Sunday, February 10, 2008

Photo Challenges

Last year, I gave myself a challenge: to take at least one photograph a day for 365 days, and to post one photograph per day to a Flickr group dedicated to that purpose. I was in this with a number of other people, and knowing that there was a community to whom I was, in at least a loose sense, accountable, helped me keep to my challenge. I finished that challenge in early January, and you can view my 365 photographs, if you wish.

Doing the challenge got me more involved in the process of photography than I had been for years. I started to read photoblogs (see the sidebar for some links), and found more participatory projects. On finishing my 365, I decided to cut back from one photo a day to a photo a week in the "2008 photo challenge." The goal of this challenge is to "document your community," where "community" is left purposely indeterminate.

The first photo I took in 2008 for this challenge documents an Ann Arbor icon.

snow bears - #357 - January 3, 2007

Cuddling snow bears in front of Blimpyburger have become an Ann Arbor icon. The owner rebuilds the snow bears frequently, so we like to keep an eye on them to see what's changed. We had 10 inches of snow on New Year's morning, and here is the result.

Although we are supposed to plan out our photos for the challenge, I have to admit that this one was not planned. I was walking by, saw the snow bears, and took a few shots by the light of the setting sun. I got double duty from this photo, entering it as number 357 in my 365 challenge, and for week 1 in the 2008 challenge.

I've taken a couple other photos of the snow bears. One is another angle on these bears, and the other was taken last winter.

Interestingly, doing this challenge is both easier and harder than the 365 challenge. Because I don't have to take a photo every day, I'm not always carrying my camera, and I tend wait until late in the week to get my weekly shot. I'm also not planning ahead as much as I "should be." That makes this challenge a good opportunity to work on reducing my tendency to leave things to the last minute.

I've also started a separate "February challenge", about which I'll write in my next entry.

1 comment:

Trevor Carpenter said...

I understand the dillema of shooting only one a week. I did a daily shoot challenge this last December, and I have failed transitioning to a weekly shot as well.

I'm also putting it off to the end of the week. It's hard.

Thanks for sharing in this challenge. It's a lot of fun to see how diverse we all are.