As of this second, right now I have literally just finished this Project. Except you are probably reading this on a different day so this post is technically out of date.
I waited all day praying that the rain would stay away, checking my gear and sketching out my lighting diagram. The shoot itself was challenging, I changed my light setup about 4 times, tried about 3 different angles and different depth of fields. Even when I got to editing, I changed my mind every step of the way. But I got there and here it is:
How do I feel after finishing this Project 52? Well, tired/relived/happy are a few adjectives that could describe my current mood.
Would I do it again? I certainly doubt it but never say never ay?
I think in order to evaluate this Project properly I think I should go back to why I got involved in it in the first place…
I chose Project52 so I could map my progress/development and life across a year. The aim was to see how my skills and eye for photography would develop over the year. When I started, I didn’t particularly have a theme or a style that I was going to restrict myself too. I was literally going to shoot anything and everything throughout the year. It didn’t matter what time of the week I took the shot just as long as it came from that week. This meant that I had to make sure that every week I had time to get myself a photo. I didn’t want to just shoot anything so I put a fair amount of pressure on myself to hold up some level of quality.
Looking back through the photos of this project which can be found here! it is quite apparent that there is quite a lot of variance in quality. There are quite a few photos in there that I don’t like and a few that I really like. Straight away my the one photo that jumps out to me as being my favourite HAS to be this one, week 25:
Everything about this photo is on point for me. It is a sunny day in the middle of summer, I love summer. It has a car in it, I love cars. It is full of action and I love action. Seriously, this was the first time that I have ever been to an event like this and it was one of the best days of my life. I got a press pass which meant that I got to stand on the infield and get close to the cars as they came back. The noise was insane. The stench of tortured tires was thick and my adrenaline was surging! I have never taken a proper panning shot in my life and it was a rapid learning curve for me. But best of all, best of all was the people I met whilst taking part in this event. I met some of the nicest people who were all into photography and into cars too! I still shoot with them today and we have a lot on for the new year so stay tuned.
I would have to say the worst photo from the project is this one, week 37:
This photo was pretty much the only one I took all week. I hate it. I really do. The week was mad at work and I had to head back up to Birmingham to my old flat and gut it. I had no time to do anything and I should have made time which meant that I had nothing to show for myself. I was gutted. But that’s the way a project has to run, you need the lows to get the highs.
Do you want to know what I really think of this project? Do you want to know how it made me feel? Well I shall tell you. At first it was great, after stringing a few nice photos it was nice but then the pressure started to mount up. I felt like I had to equal or better my last photo. I guess this started to make me resent the last photo and made me feel like I “had to” take the next one rather than wanting to. It’s a silly way of thinking as I loved Project50 which one paper should be much much more relentless.
So that’s how I started to feel, it felt like I was having to take photos every week rather than merely taking part in a little photo project. This started to demotivate me and stopped me from taking photos for fun which I feel is the whole point of photography. I started to feel like a bit of a prat carrying my DSLR around with me constantly hunting out the next photo. I started to feel like I was becoming my own worst enemy, which in case you haven’t noticed, was one the theme of my last shot. I actually came up with the idea for that shot on the 29th of May according to the notes on my phone. That gives you some idea of how quickly I started feeling the pressure on this project.
But maybe I am view this project the wrong way, maybe it isn’t about how it made me feel. Because ultimately I feel brilliant now that I have finished it.
Maybe I should view this project on what I gained from it. In that case I have managed to secure and shoot two weddings, get some product photography which led to further CGI work. I got to do a few photoshoots with some lovely models and I got a press pass for a few Drifting Events. I also got to shoot a supercar as well as taping up my sister’s face.
I think it is safe to say I got to do a lot of great things during this project, something’s that I am lucky enough to be doing next year.
I learnt a lot about myself, I learnt that I put too much pressure on myself for the smallest of things. I learnt that I have the persistence to carry out and follow through a project like this. I like the fact that I have in some way documented my life for a year and it is quite rewarding to look back and enjoy the memories. I have also received some lovely comments and some nice awards and acknowledgements along the way which makes up for how nasty I was to myself during this journey.
I have learnt that I really am “my own worst enemy.”
Thanks for watching.