Project 365 week 9 — or something like that

by DaniGirl on March 27, 2009 · 10 comments

in Photo of the Day

The best thing and the worst thing about taking a picture every single day is that your glory and your defeat are only locked in for 24 hours; after that, the slate is clean and you start all over again. That seems to be the theme of this week, where I took a couple of great pictures and a couple of “meh” pictures, and now I foist them all upon you.

I loved my four-part series of these paintbrushes and the palette. (All bought by our wonderful nanny at the dollar store of all places, to keep the boys busy during March Break. I just loved how the colours of the brushes reflect the colours in the palette, though.)

61:365 Paintbrushes

This experiment was less successful. The idea is that you put a shaped filter over your lens so that the out-of-focus areas (called bokeh) take on the shape of the filter. The points of light are just ordinary Christmas LEDs, and I made the filter with a craft punch. It didn’t turn out great, but I think I at least understand why now.

60:365  Happy Spring!

Some opportunities presented themselves to me on the way to or from work:

57:365 Chucks up

59:365 Bike shadow

64:365 Bongo dude

63:365 Please play again

(This was for a theme on “secrets”. A bit of a stretch, I know.)

66:365 vanishing point

I really liked this old abadoned barn. I found it on Sunday morning, driving around with Lucas sleeping in the back seat of the van.

62:365 Deserted barn

It’s within plain sight of the grocery store I’ve been shopping at for six years, and yet somehow I never noticed it before. I spent quite a while poking around here, and will likely return. That’s one thing I truly love about this photo-a-day project — the things you find when you simply open your eyes!

And this is my other favourite from the week. The other day, a friend lamented on Twitter that she was facing a Sisyphean day, and I had one of those “Aha!” moments. Not the first adjective I’d go to, but one that *perfectly* describes this low-level ennui that has been plaguing me for a week or so. Poor old Sisyphus, who pushed a boulder up a hill every single day only to have to start over again the next day. Sigh.

65:365 Sisyphus

(Don’t you love the expression? And yes, that’s Princess Leia’s hair. It’s the only girl hair we have in our surprisingly extensive Lego mini-fig collection. As I noted in the caption to this photo, didn’t every little girl who grew up in the 70s and 80s want to be Princess Leia at some point? And no that’s not a mustache, it’s a shadow!)

When I look at these and compare them objectively to the photos I was taking and posting just a couple of months ago, I know there is an appreciable improvement. But Flickr has opened my eyes to a world of photographers who are creating some stunning images, and my confidence in my own work falters as a result. I have to keep reminding myself to compare myself to me, and not to them. It’s hard!

{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

1 colleen March 27, 2009 at 4:26 pm

I love your photos. I didn’t realize that one could pose photos for this project. I will see if I can find my creative hat. Love the Sisyphean analogy. Always thought that Mother was spelled Sisyphus what with the endlessly repetitive chores we all do as Mothers.

2 Lee March 27, 2009 at 6:25 pm
3 Batman March 27, 2009 at 11:11 pm

Wow! You’re getting good at this.

4 Mac and Cheese March 28, 2009 at 7:10 am

I really enjoyed these!

5 kate March 28, 2009 at 8:29 am

That’s so funny. I saw that last picture, and thought Hey, Dani must have had a week like me!

So here’s my take on inspiration and self-doubt and all that stuff. I think every photographer experiences doubt and dips and self-confidence, even the good ones. In fact, I think especially the good ones. If you don’t, it’s probably because you’re playing it safe and sticking with what’s comfortable. If you push yourself beyond that and experiment then you’ve stepped off into the unknown, and of course that’s scary as hell. For the past month-ish, pretty much every other day, I decide all my photos suck and I’m stupid to even try. Then the next day, I decide maybe they’re ok, and I should keep going. Then that night something will set me off and all my work is crap again. I’ve been meaning to blog about this, but just haven’t gotten to it. I think the solution is to consciously separate the creative acts from the critical acts. The critical act is just as essential to photography as the creative, but you screw yourself if you mix them together. So quiet the judgy voices while you’re shooting and be willing to make mistakes, then let the judgers rip once you’ve got them on your computer. If they get too loud, walk away from the computer and just shoot again. Or at least that’s what I’m trying to do…

6 Pam March 28, 2009 at 8:39 am

There will ALWAYS be people out there who are better at your talents than you are, but is the point really to be the best? what then? Seriously – I love that Tim Hortons cup shot. Hilarious. Did you borrow from Stef’s “Tower of Futility”? I loved that…

7 XUP March 28, 2009 at 5:29 pm

I love, love, love the Tim’s cup. It’s so dominant. Such a good perspective. It speaks volumes about the whole Tim’s culture and the roll-up culture in particular

8 Rebecca March 29, 2009 at 7:23 am

What great pictures. I felt an emotional connection to the Tim Horton’s cup! Well done…

9 Amy @ Muddy Boots March 29, 2009 at 12:51 pm

Princess Leia’s is the only girl hair we have too… I think our boys would have fun together.

I constantly doubt myself and my talents too. I’m too much of a perfectionist. I’ve failed terribly at the 365 project though. Good for you to keep it up. I have been taking loads of pictures, but haven’t uploaded them in about a month. (sigh) Add it to the list…

10 Mad Hatter March 31, 2009 at 12:45 pm

Wow. Your photos have come a long way since you started this project AND they were great to start. I like the paint brushes and the J-Pod-y Sisyphus.

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