June was kind of a tough month for the photo a day project; there was a lot of soul searching in what I was doing, why was I doing it and if it was still fun. In June month missed 2 weeks of photos being taken every day because I was really busy with the end of term? To be honest once I had missed the first few days I just placed the whole project on the back burner, instead of pushing myself to take the pictures. This was partly due to what one of the reviewers said at the portfolio review I went to at the beginning of the month;
“Why are you doing this, There is no message or narrative here, It just looks like a boy playing with toys, Just finish the project if it is just a routine.”
These comments hit me kind of hard; all the other reviewers had loved the project and gave constructive criticisms of the work, which I agreed with. Yet the last reviewer hit me for six. Of course he might not have liked the pictures, the idea and whole thing. Yet his words were not pointing at the craft but at what the point of the project was. Previously when I had missed a day I just took two pictures the next day in the morning early enough to be within the 24 hours and one in the afternoon. Yet this time when my work got on top of me I just went “ok then”.
I don’t disagree with the idea that the project has no narrative, which is kind of the point, each picture in itself being an isolated creation. If I wanted a narrative I would have planned the months out in advance. “Just a boy playing with toys”, yes I am, I am having fun with my camera (MY TOY).
I could agree with, “Finish the project if it has become a routine” because it had become more of a chore than a fun thing to do each day. I was and am getting bored with the creation aspect, so many of the prompts are becoming repetitive or just plain boring.
This apathy to the project has seeped through again to July, I went on holiday had no figures with me and so I missed a week of pictures. Instead of playing catch up I have decided that in July I will take a break. Yes, this means it is no longer a real 365 project, but then again it didn’t start out as one in the first place; it evolved into one. I want this project to finish on a high not me burnt out and sick of seeing the photos. I want them to go somewhere afterwards not just be on the digital scrap heap. Taking a break means I can come back fresh in August and finish the project one month late in October.
When the reviewer made his criticism I took it quite personally and it has taken a few weeks to really understand what his last point was. If it is no longer fun and just something you have to do instead of what you look forward to doing, then why bother. Maybe it was the tough words I needed to hear, but not what I wanted to listen to.
The Awesomeness of the Lego Project Will Return in August.
All were photographed with a Canon G10 using a combination of on camera flash, natural light and lamps. 90% of editing took place in Lightroom, if Photoshop was used it was usually for combining exposures. If you wish to follow the daily posts of this self imposed challenge you can on Instagram and you can see previous months here. Let me know your thoughts of June’s pictures in the comment box below.
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