What is the 365 Project?

My Equine Bud

I’ve had several people ask me about the 365 Project, so, I thought I would blog about it and explain what it is and why I’ve decided to participate.  This is something relatively new that I’ve started participating in, I’m about 20 days into it now (I know, I’m a bit behind on posting this).  However, there are a lot of people that have been participating in it for a while and have already started their second round and maybe more of the 365 project.  The concept isn’t new, it is meant to help an artist grow both in technical abilities as well as creativity.  There are other sites or groups out there doing a photo a day, painting a day, etc.  As a matter of fact, I’ve participated in the painting a day concept before….actually, I did that for the month of February 2010 and painted a little 6” by 6” canvas each day along with several members of the Mid-Missouri Fine Arts Society (MMFAS).  Anyway, I met a new friend at one of the MMFAS meetings and while discussing photography, she suggested I check the 365 project out (Thank you Slava J ).  Well, several months down the road, I’ve finally done that!  The idea of the project is to take a photo a day and post it at the 365 website.  Sounds simple enough, right?  Well….. I will admit, I was still just a bit worried and thought this would just be something else in my life to cause stress, not help relieve it.  I was worried I would stress about not having enough time, 365 days is a long time, I would run out of ideas, you get the picture and I’m sure you can come up with the rest of the excuses I had.  Finally, in aggravation over some other things in my life and in an effort to fuel my constant need for a creative outlet, I decided to sign up.  It’s no charge and can hopefully only better my skillz (that spelling is for my children…they’ll appreciate that), so, what did I have to lose? 

The website is meant to be used to store, display, and share your photos as you learn to improve your skills, track your progress, share tips and tricks, and just continue to learn.  After posting a few images, I’ve also learned that it is an excellent source for affirmation.  It is nice to hear not only that someone likes or appreciates your creativity but also what they like about it or what you’ve gotten right.  This definitely helps you to grow!  The project also has a way of helping to improve your “artistic” eye….and for some of us…..learning how to use your camera to the fullest potential….actually taking out the manual and figuring some of this out. (I won’t mention any names but, I do need to dig out my manual…again…LOL).   One interesting byproduct of this project has been that I’m not only learning more about my equipment but I’m also learning more about some of my subjects as well.  One case in point, I took a few shots of an odd little, duck-like bird at the city lake.  This prompted me to do a little research and figure out exactly what it was since I’d never noticed it at the lake before and I’ve had some personal introductions with other  lake inhabitants (remind me to tell you about the time I was walking the track with a goose attached to my pant leg).  Anyway, the new “critter” was small and black, had a white, pointed bill and had individually webbed toes.  Did I mention it also had blood-red eyes!  Creepy but looked harmless enough….at least to me…now, if you ask my friend Theresa, I’m sure she’ll tell you otherwise!  I started telling a few people about it and it became evident that we had to know what had inhabited the city lake.  After a very brief bit of searching…turns out if you Google images of “black red-eyed duck” you can find this thing pretty quickly.  Who knew?  It turned out to be an American Coot (and no, I still can’t call it a Coot without cracking at least a smile and a chuckle)….what can I say, the oddest things amuse me and unfortunately, I think my daughter has inherited this trait.  As of this morning, my latest research involved trying to find out the incubation period of a Killdeer.  Which is 24 to 28 days, I might add.  Check out Day 19 or the April 12th post to see why….

So, if I haven’t lost you through all of this rambling, pop on over to www.365project.org to follow my progress, view the project or even sign up for yourself.  You can also see my daily posts on Facebook as the project does integrate with the social media quite well.  Hopefully by the end of the 365 days, we’ll all see a positive progression in my work or at the very least, see a few cool pictures, and maybe hear a an interesting story or two!  I look forward to everyone’s feedback, good and bad…..I need both in order to continue improving and believe, me, I can take it…..I have my big-girl panties on! J

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