365 Project, Epilogue

Cleveland Photography
Cleveland Photographer, Photo Al Bell and Ohio State Buckeye fan

After one year, three hundred sixty-five days of posting a different self-shot image everyday, this project has come to its conclusion. To be transparent, I have many mixed feelings about coming to the end. In one sense, there is the relief of one less hard deadline to meet every single day. On the other hand I loved the challenge of finding something new to share every single day. Without a doubt, I’ve embraced and have established the daily practice of shooting a variety of subjects to challenge myself.

I think in the deep recesses of my brain that I originally imagined this daily shooting regiment like practicing to be a sharpshooter, similar to Clint Eastwood in the movie ‘Unforgiven’, spending hours perfecting the second nature ability to get the shot. The reality is that while there is much to that, being able to read the light and adjust the camera controls quickly to achieve the look that I imagined is a product of that practice. The additional byproduct of that daily practice that I wasn’t expecting was, over time the different creative options that I’d come up with for each shot, sometimes like a creative blizzard, each thought like a snowflake different from the others. For those of us in the business of Creativity On Demand one of those fears is reaching down to meet a client’s needs only to find that the creative well is dry, even if it’s only temporary. For me, that fear has been greatly reduced because now I know that I can… I’ve done it, everyday for a year, and if necessary, I know I can do it again without the fear of a dry well.

Of course, my style continues to evolve, and I’ve had wonderful opportunities to meet people that I otherwise would have simply passed by. Intellectually, I always knew that meeting new people would enrich me, but when you actually introduce yourself to a total stranger and ask them to make their portrait, the conversations that develop are unlike any other meeting that you can ever have.

Lastly, I know that I’ve exposed myself quite a bit throughout the past year. I don’t believe it’s as obvious to others as it is to me, however we reveal a little about our inner-selves in the images that we make and the images that we like. Half way through the project, I posted the ‘Ten Things You Might Not Have Known About Al‘; maybe years from now some student will study this project and come up with at least 10 more that weren’t written.

Thanks to everyone that looked at this project, either as a passing observer or a dedicated study. A few of you have shared that you appreciated, enjoyed and were even inspired by this project.  To all of you I encourage you to pay if forward. Yesterday was to conclusion of the project, but not the end to my photography. I will continue to shoot for my clients and for myself, with many images shared here for all to enjoy.

I’m wishing everyone a wonderful 2015, take care, be well, and I’ll see you around…. so smile!



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