52 Project – What I learned

A few weeks ago, I’ve taken the last photograph for my self portrait project. I did the 52 Project, which basically means that I had to take a self portrait every single week for a year.

I thought it was a fun challenge, something which would make me take photographs regulary and stretch my imagination. I decided to do selfportraits as I wanted the project to have some consistency (eg. no random snaps of objects in my room). I love shooting people but finding someone willing to pose for me every week could be more difficult so I resorted to myself as a model out of necesity, not narcisissm (although there might be a bit of that too)

But on to more interesting things – so what have I actually learned from the 52 Project?

  •  Consistency – I got used to take a picture every week, although yes, sometimes I posted late, but I didn’t beat myself up about it – life happens. I was also happy to discover that I can finish a long project like this, which I wasn´t entirely sure I can do before.
  • Getting to know myself – as I was unused to taking self portraits I had to experiment with techniques and concepts and trying to discover what types of it appeal to me.
  • Bravery –  Having people staring at you while you´re taking a self portait in front of a tripod in a park, might make you seem like a bit of a twat, but as my body refused to wake up at the crack of dawn to go and take pictures (needless to mention that I´d look like a zombie anyway, which might be a problem if you intend to take a picture with your face in it). The point is I had to get comfortable with taking pictures of myself in public, and get better at finding super cool and hidden locations (even though I might have trespassed once or twice)
  •  Stretching my imagination and doing some crazy stuff:
Going Crazy

– yes those are my feet sticking out of a rubbish bin. I dont think this one needs a comment really.

  • Getting better at photography – this is something Im not entirely sure about, Im not sure whether I´ve improved in any visible way, but I definately learned a thing or two.

Some other thoughts:

I believe that doing the 52, was very beneficial for me. I’ve taken a lot of photographs I probably wouldn’t have taken otherwise. And having these photographs have enabled me to host my first exhibition, which was both exciting and nerve wrecking.

I’ve also really enjoyed the whole process, from taking pictures to uploading them although it wasn´t always easy. However – Im glad it´s over as towards the end I was suffering from a bit of a creative paralysis as I couldn´t always take the pictue I wanted to.

Nevertheless I can´t say im not thinking of doing something similar in the future, and I still thinking about what I´ll do for my photo a week. But it was a great experience and I´d advise everyone who´s interested in photography to try it out, you only need relatively little time each week to do something this fun and rewarding. What do you think?

More pictures of my 52 Project are on flickr!

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Author: reverine

Writer & Photographer currently based in Edinburgh, UK. http://reverinephotography.com/

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