11 Tips to Succeed with a Photo365 Project

11 Tips to Succeed with a Photo365 Project

Whether you call it a Photo 365 or a Photo A Day (PAD) project the net result is the same, a photo for every day of the year. These types of photo projects are menacing at first thought, but provide a fantastic opportunity to explore and learn not just photography, but creative seeing and post-productions skills. Here are 11 tips to get the most out of any future Photo365 / Photo A Day project you undertake this year.

1. Maintain A Heightened Awareness

At every moment of the day keep your eye open with a photo in mind. Look for the obscure moments or observations that you might otherwise let go by with out a second glance. Training your eye and brain in this way is where a Photo365 / Photo A Day project can help you improve as a photographer the most. Taking great photography can’t happen if you never see or never know when to react.

Featured are photos of a Photo365 project now on its 3rd consecutive year
taken by Noel Kleinman of his son from birth to today

Happy Feet – Day 1/365 Year 1
© Noel Kleinman, All Rights Reserved – Used With Permission

2. Always Have Your Camera With You

Always have your camera with you through out the day. Don’t feel self conscious. Don’t get lazy. Don’t ever take a break. The one time you don’t have your camera with you is the one time you’ll wish you never left it behind. While Murphy’s Law is something you normally encounter from time to time, the frequency of taking photos every day means you’ll have many more opportunities to experience it. With a little discipline you can easily avoid Murphy’s Law moments.

3. There Is No Time Like the Present

Never say, ‘I’ll take a photo of that later.” or “I’ll take a photo of that on my way back.” Take the photo while the idea is in your head and the light is right. Moments of inspiration seldom come at convenient times and light conditions are seldom ever exactly the same twice in a day.

4. Train Your Eye To See Light

Learn how to get the most out of the light whether sunny, overcast, or any thing in between. Learning how to get the most out of high contrast and low contrast lighting situations is a great way to broaden your photographic opportunities. In addition experiment and make use of off camera lighting to supplement the available light to you. I learned a lot forcing myself to take photos in all different lighting environments during my Photo365 / Photo A Day project several years ago and it helped make me a stronger photographer.

5. Experiment! Don’t Stay In Your Comfort Zone

Break out and risk the bad shot to learn something new. Taking the same photos over and over again because you’re comfortable taking them will not improve your photography and it won’t increase interest in your work. Step out of your comfort zone to try new things. Doing this is not dependent on buying new equipment rather opening your eyes to new styles and new subjects.

Jack & Barack 08 – Day 81/365 Year 1
© Noel Kleinman, All Rights Reserved – Used With Permission

6. Make Use of Weekly Themes

365 unique photos is a sizable goal. If you’re running thin on ideas think in terms of weekly themes. Take photos of a particular location, a color, portraits of family & friends, pet photos, macros, hidden letters, etc. Sometimes an infinite number of subjects are more easily pared down when thought of in terms of themes. Themes offer a sense of order and predictability providing incremental steps bringing you closer to your end goal.

7. Plan Ahead & Write Down Ideas

Rather than wait for inspiration to find you plan ahead and write down ideas for future photos in a notebook. This is great practice for normal photo shoots and will reinforce creative thinking. Reviewing previously documented photo ideas will prove to be a great resource when spontaneous ideas are few and far between.

8. Edit & Post-Process Every Week

In order to avoid backlogs edit & post-process you photos weekly if not daily. Getting into a rhythm on editing & post-processing is key to completing your Photo365 / Photo A Day project. For many taking photos is the easy part, but editing & processing the photos is the challenge. For every photo you publish you’re likely to have many others that don’t make the cut. Getting into a rhythm to select your final photos and processing them in a timely fashion will make the difference between success and failure.

9. Add Notes to Your Photos

When posting daily photos online add notes as to what you thought worked or didn’t from your days photos. Post general photo shoot and camera setting info from your EXIF data, you’ll look back on this later to refresh your memory or to see how far you’ve come. Anecdotal stories are also great information to look back on. Understanding how, why and when you photographed your subject provides insight to your creative thinking that you can’t get from EXIF data.

10. Get Into A Rhythm & Have Fun

Make sure to have fun during your year long photo project. The moment it becomes work the more challenging completing a Photo365 / Photo A Day project becomes. Getting into a rhythm can help a great deal in lowering the perceived level of effort to get your daily photos in. Whether you’re heading out to explore during your lunch break, taking a 10 minute detour in your commute or even taking 365 self-portraits, knowing that you have time dedicated to get your photo(s) in takes a lot of stress out of the process. If you’re the more spontaneous type then build in an extra 10-20 minutes into your appointment schedule to stop and explore with your camera. As with life ones destination is often far less interesting than the journey.

Jack in the Box – Day 236/365 Year 3
© Noel Kleinman, All Rights Reserved – Used With Permission

11. Start Today

Here is the best thing about a Photo365 / Photo A Day project, you can start ANY day of the year. Most frequently people associate these projects with New Years, but there is no rule as to when you have to start a project such as this. While it may seem overwhelming take the plunge and start your Photo365 / Photo A Day project today.

Read more from our Tips & Tutorials category

Jim Goldstein is a San Francisco based professional photographer. An author as well as a photographer Jim has been published in numerous publications including Outdoor Photographer, Digital Photo Pro, Popular Photography and has self-published a PDF eBook Photographing the 4th Dimension - Time covering numerous slow shutter techniques. His latest work and writing can be found on his JMG-Galleries blog and on 500px

Some Older Comments

  • Chris March 15, 2013 01:53 pm

    I linked to this page on my website: http://photographybychrishoward.com/project-365/

  • nonamegirl May 27, 2012 11:34 am

    Great suggestions! I'm trying to do a self-portraiture 365 with amateur materials like a camera phone (terribly missing my DSLR, but this is definitely challenging and fun) and hopefully I won't run out of ideas >.< Would love people to visit and comment, react, whatever.

  • Carl March 9, 2012 03:34 am

    I have just started my photo a day project. Your tips are helpful and will apply them on my project. Thanks!

  • Daniel February 1, 2012 08:06 pm

    Excellent article on one of the fastest growing types of personal photography. I especially like the tip on weekly themes. I think if you can include something about what is going on in your life or the world, we would be a great way to remind you and others later. For example if you're having a wedding and shopping for items, take a photo of you and each item you like most on a particular day. It would be great to see everything at the end and how your tastes or "themes" progress.

  • mark January 1, 2012 10:42 pm

    Thank you for this wonderful article! LOL. It may sound cliche to start this comment that way but really I find this helpful for my 365 project this year! Hell, yes I'm going to join the bandwagon.. :D

  • Crousticro August 18, 2011 06:32 am

    Just started 3 days ago :) EXCITING!

  • saurabh mittal April 25, 2011 05:40 am

    thx so much. loved your inputs. i am starting on my project365 and these were some good advices.
    do provide your inputs on my blog


  • Sarah March 30, 2011 04:17 am

    Also - I have followed all the blogspot links on here. (:

  • Sarah March 30, 2011 04:11 am

    I decided to take up this challenge and used this page for tips. So I have taken the idea of using a different theme every week. THANKS! If anyone wants to follow me and give me tips and such, here's my site.


    I'm on day 9.

  • Shlomo March 25, 2011 10:14 pm

    im in the middle of my project i cant bealive that by the end of this weekend iwill be at 50% in and so far i didnt reuse or anything like that everyday is a new photo taken that day i do feel that there are days that im stuck or had no ideas what to take so i took any old simple picture that came to my eye

    two weeks ago i went to Lapland which made it to open my eyes to diffrent stuff and i would like to share the trip album, as well as my 365 project(link is by my name)


  • Ruben February 24, 2011 08:24 pm

    I must say it has not been an easy task to get into pace and rythm..but it's been allready 2 months and it is still going. I am enjoing it every day.

    Thaks for the tips.


  • Allan February 16, 2011 08:22 am

    Thanks for the tips! I'd also like to add, to network with other 365ers. We all support each other. Day 45 so far....wish me luck!


  • Laura January 8, 2011 02:08 am

    Thank you for posting the 365 day calendar, this will definatley help me make my Photography better and expand my Imagination.

  • Shlomo January 4, 2011 12:31 pm

    theses ideas are very helpful im at day 101 and so far i can say about myself that i have started to take pictures of people alot better then i did before (ok the family is my gini pigs) but i also found that when i started to write a list of things to try and take a picture of i sometime go and try to do one of the things on that list and sometimes while taking another one from the list i come up with another idea and i add it to my list
    in my opion the list is a very very good and helpful idea

    heres my link to my project at day 101

  • C&L January 3, 2011 08:17 pm

    We've done it, 365 photos completed on 31th Dec. 2010. Was a unique and rewarding experience.

  • Terra Rathai January 3, 2011 08:01 pm

    I successfully completed my 365 project on New Year's Eve. I became a photographer through this journey (and a writer). It's a huge commitment but sometimes that's what it takes to get serious about making art.

    Check it out, if you'd like at avantgarden365.wordpress.com

    If you're starting your own 365 project, best of luck to you. The heightened awareness is essential and an incredible benefit of this type of project.

  • EdTechDiva January 2, 2011 07:23 pm

    Thanks for the Excel file on Theme ideas. I put it into my Google calendar -- just what I need -- a gentle reminder!

  • Jonas July 3, 2010 10:12 pm

    This article will be very helpful while I attempt to maintain taking a photo a day.

    Hopefully, I'll learn a thing or two about using my DSLR.

  • mark June 3, 2010 03:57 am

    Wow - Thats a beautiful photo book. I confess my shots arent nearly as artistic. I intended my project to remind me of things I did over the year. So I can pick up the book ten years from now and say - "wow, I forgot about that". Simple things like flowers blooming in the garden, the child playing in the sprinkler, or even a new car. Some pictures I try and compose, but some are just me playing with the camera. I took one with the remote, easter weekend, of a bunch of candy on the table. I was playing with the remote and fired the camera by accident. I didn't think about it until I downloaded the shots. Its a macro shot of a tootsie pop, but I liked it.
    Sometimes I'm driving home and realize, "oh crap I didn't take my picture today" - and Im frantically searching for something. I have lots of trees, flowers, and a few moon pictures. If I take a thirty second shot of the moon from 11:59:45 on saturday, until 12:00:15 on sunday, does that count for both days?
    I have the blurb software, its okay, and about the most versatile I have found, if a bit user-unfriendly. I still havent seen anything to match the eckerd software. Im going to try albumworks, because they made the eckerd stuff...

  • ProphecyBlur June 3, 2010 02:32 am

    @mark - personally I can reconmend Blurb, i have bought two books from them so far and have been very pleased with the results. I've just created this book for the first half of my Project 365


    The only challenge i have found recently has been a dip in enthusiasm to complete the project. For some reason i am just not seeing things arround me the same as i have been, and it has become more forced than a pleasure.

    Have recently looked into the idea of weekly themes to ease the process...but open to advice :-)

  • mark May 29, 2010 12:36 am

    I've been doing "Project 365" since January 1. I thought it was the best time to start, since I got a canon t1i for x-ma$$. I have really enjoyed the challenges so far. The project is teaching me a lot about my camera, and about how to take better pictures. My old digital camera was an a620, but before that I used a canon FTB from the 70s. Fully manual, with a 50mm prime lens.
    My ultimate goal is to put all 365 pictures from this year into a photo book. I have tried several different photo book programs, but none of them really allow me full creative control over the process. Eckerd Drugs had a GREAT software suite "brooks eckerd photobook", but since they sold out to rite-aid, the software works but there's no where to send the finished work. Most photobooks (like the one snapfish offers) seem to be for technically challenged people - they offer only simple pre-arranged layouts and little flexibility. "book smart" is the closest ive come to being happy, but even then, I layed out january, and the file was 150megabytes. I can't imagine trying to upload a complete project to them at 12 times that size (1.8GB!)
    Anyone have any photobook hints? Is there an off-the-shelf software I can just purchase and take the finished book to a local printing company?

  • Ian Stevenson February 10, 2010 10:19 pm

    I started my 365 project on http://blipfoto.com/cyclops a couple of years back and got totally addicted - it's a great site. I've now posted photos for 787 consecutive days - I kind of overshot the original goal.

    Check out http://blipfoto.com/ if you're thinking about a 365 project and want to do it in a great community!

  • sensor-eyezed February 9, 2010 02:46 pm

    Like many others here I was also inspired to try a 365 project. I 'tested' the waters for a couple of weeks before 2010 and then made the commitment. Like the song says - "some days a diamond, some days a stone". But very few dull moments. It's a great way to force the camera into your hands each day. There are days when inspiration overflows and I take 100+ photos; on other days it's a struggle to get 10 and make a choice.

    I like some of the suggestions provided here, esp. choosing a theme. So far I've tried harder at 'seeing' vs just looking and I think that I'm starting to 'see' better. Composition, colour, light, contrast etc are flooding the consciousness and 'eye' much more so than in the past. The idea of getting one's spouse onside at the outset is a worthy idea, although the urge to shoot during dinnertime when the light is just right is still not completely understood (nor always tolerated). But I have noticed better understanding when I announce that I need to go out on a photo shoot.

    Feel free to have a look and/or comment at www.millemots-365.blogspot.com

  • Ross Cataldo February 8, 2010 03:39 pm

    For those who are intrested I am about to allow a few other people on my server so if you have not started your project and want a simple way to post your pictures and do your project then drop me an email on info@project365.com.au,

    You will get username and password to log in and post your pictures and thoughts and how you took the shot ect up to you.

    As i develop the site will let more and more people on,

    The only thing I ask is that you paticipate each day and that you stick to the rules (TBA)

    Regards Ross

  • Charity February 7, 2010 02:38 pm

    I picked up some great tips from this article although I have not had a chance to lose focus on the 365 project. My Projects follow my life which stay incredibly lively. This article made me think about focusing my work each week and organizing my thoughts within my project. Thank you for sharing.

  • pictureperfect February 3, 2010 08:28 pm

    I started the Project 365 assignment on New Year's Day. When I'm not out and about, finding interesting things to photograph can be a challenge. However, it is making me "see" more things in my day-to-day life, and oftentimes photo opportunities seem to just pop up out of the blue. I believe that before this project is done, it will make me a better photographer without a doubt.

    Also, I have found interesting things around the house to photograph. Lately, I have taken photos that relate to what activity I have participated in for each day, or the places I've been. The pics aren't always the greatest, but it forces me to look beyond what is obvious and think outside the box. I do look forward, however, to traveling to a new place that has some more new and exciting things to photograph.

  • Alessandra February 2, 2010 11:27 am

    I started my photo 365 project (http://myshutterspeed.com) on New Years because I wanted it to be a goal of mine to just get out there and shoot everyday. I live in a small town in Thailand teaching English and I would reserve taking pictures for the weekends when I was on an island or a mini vacation. With this project I have taken the most interesting photos right outside my doorstep! It has allowed me to have a better collection of photographs from my life living in this little town and I know I will appreciate it later that I took these photos! It has also painted a better picture of where I am and what I'm doing to my family and friends and they have appreciated it so much!

    This tips are so great! I always find myself saying I'll get that shot on my way back. I ride a bicycle and i always have to motivate myself to stop that bike, balance it, take my lens cap off, and then get the shot. Its hard to do that thirty times on one bike ride, but I need to take your advice and just do it!

    Thank you for your suggestions, I'll really take them to heart!

  • Cameta Camera February 2, 2010 09:38 am

    The photo 365 project is a great idea, and these are some fantastic tips. Number 3 is the most important; all too often we hesitate in the face of opportunity or, more likely, we are just too damn lazy to do anything about it at all. Besides with an undertaking like this you need every opportunity you can get. Good post!

  • Bull Rhino January 30, 2010 12:00 pm

    Thanks for the great tips. I keep thinking I want to do this but have a million excuses. "I work 8 hours a day in a job where I really can't be taking photos." "Should I do the 'self portrait' style or just a photo a day?" "Do I have to take the photo they day I post it or can I take several in one day and post them over a period of days?" . . . . I don't want to commit and then not finish the job. Right now I post a photo to my blog almost every day, but the photo may have been taken yesterday or in one or two cases many years ago. I will keep percolating this in my brain for a while - I retire in about 6 months - and see where it goes.

  • Liz January 30, 2010 05:29 am

    I am so glad this was posted!! It has come at JUST the right time for me! I have been doing a project 365 since Jan 1, 2010, and I have just reached the point of sitting back and saying "can I really do this?!" It is more challenging than I thought to come up with ideas for shots. I am absolutely an amateur photographer, but would LOVE to improve... thus the reason for doing the 365 challenge.. :)

    I am definitely going to try to start the "themes" idea at some point. I've pretty much just been doing whatever comes to mind at the moment.. Any other suggestions and ideas are MORE than welcome!! I have been looking through some of the other project365 sites that ya'll have posted, and it is also very helpful! I'm going to try to become a "follower" of some of them and keep up to continue learning from you guys! Thanks! :)

    Please become a "follower" of my blog if you'd like and comment please... I could REALLY use some help!!


  • Paul January 30, 2010 03:40 am

    just what i needed! Thanks! I'll start TODAY!

  • Eveline January 29, 2010 10:46 pm

    I finished my Project 365 at midnight on New Year's Eve and I have to say I was relieved. Taking a picture every day, and uploading them in a timely fashion, is hard work!

    My tips:

    * Take your camera everywhere! But that's a given, right? And if for some reason you can't , take pictures on your phone. Most have decent quality nowadays anyway.

    * Not every picture has to be a Masterpiece. I have taken pictures of sweets and worried about which of them would be my picture of the day. It's nice if you take brilliant pictures every day, but don't worry if a few of those 365 isn't that great.

    * I've driven my bfr mad on days when I had no inspiration at all. 'I don't know what to take a picture of' has been the most heard sentence of 2009. In November I decided to take pictures of the letters of the alphabet, giving me 26 days I did not have to worry about what to take a picture of, just to find a certain letter that day. I wish I had thought of that sooner. Think of series of pictures you can take. Take pictures of your dinner for a week, take pictures of the sky every day when you go out, set one day of the week aside for a certain theme such as a self portrait or even what's on tv that night.

    * Take pictures as early as possible. I've had some very close calls, thinking of something to take a picture of at 22.00 or 23.00. Even if you take a 'mehh'-shot early on, you can still take another one later that day, but at least you'll have yourself covered if for some reason you can't.

    * Try and upload once a day, or once a week. I got two weeks behind once and it really messed things up. Oh, and try to make sure your Flickr-settings are right. I was notified by one of the Project 365 - group moderators that all the pictures I had posted that day had the same date on them. Oops! Instead of 'date taken' it was putting the day of posting next to my picture. Not good!

    * Make sure the date and time on your camera are right, too! When you go on holiday in a different timezone, make sure you reset your time and date accordingly.

    * Can't decide on what picture to post for that day? Make a Flickr set for 'Pictures that did not make Project 365'. That way you can still show off those great pictures you took and not feel like you've wasted them.

    * Have FUN! When you're feeling like you're about to give up, remember that you decided to do this project, and no-one is holding a gun to your head.

    (and one more: if you see a man walking around in a shopping centre Chelmsford, UK, with a cat on his shoulders, do NOT take a picture. He will go mad and yell at you for half an hour demanding you delete the picture because you have 'no right' to take a picture of his cat. I'm just saying....)

  • Emily January 29, 2010 01:43 pm

    Every one here has inspired me! I printed up these tips and pasted them to my journal. I have just started my A Photo A day this past week. I am really jazzed about doing this.

    Here's my website http://myonephotoaday.blogspot.com/
    Check it out. C/Cs are welcomed!!!

    Everyone here is so awesome!!! Thanks!!!

  • Bethwex January 29, 2010 01:13 pm

    I'm on day 28 and I have a lot of photos of my dinner...

    Still enjoying the project though!

  • Jeff January 29, 2010 12:21 pm

    I forget to leave the link for my Project 365. Here it is:

    Thanks for viewing and/or subscribing.


  • Jeff January 29, 2010 12:19 pm

    Really good suggestions/reminders. Thank you.

    I started my Project 365 in mid-December; was too pumped up to wait until Jan 1st. Have had a few H.S. moments when it's late and no shots that day. But generally it's going well with lots of variety. Having subscribers definitely is motivating as folks really do look forward to each day's shoot.

    I'm always carrying a point & shoot and will usually break out the dSLR + lenses over the weekend. Some of the coolest shots have been with the P&S however.

  • Stacey Malleck January 29, 2010 12:08 pm

    Something I definitely need to start doing!

  • Valerie January 29, 2010 10:48 am

    great tips. i'm on photo 129 and i think it's important to have fun and remember that every photo will not be great. i always have my gear with me, i'm always looking and if i see a photo in a book or on the web that i like, i try to copy it or do something similar.

  • vicki January 29, 2010 07:20 am

    I'm having a lot of fun with my 365 project which I started on Jan 1. It's truly amazing what you can find around the house to photograph at 10:00pm when you're getting ready for bed and realize that you forgot to take your pic of the day!! LOL! I took a picture of a carton of eggs yesterday that had 10 whole eggs and 2 spots filled with the shells of the eggs I cooked for dinner. It really turned out fun!

    My daughter (in KS) and I (i'm in CO) are doing this together and it's a lot fo fun to see what we each come up with for the day! So, if you don't think you can't do it on your own.......do a buddy system! It makes it even more fun!

  • kellypea January 29, 2010 06:45 am

    I began my 365 project on Jan. 1 this year and have had some fun. A lack of time poses a problem on most days, but I enjoy it all so it's a good way to unwind. I also enjoy seeing what everyone else is learning -- I get so much from their perspective. Although I do have a page on my foodblog where I post my photos, I'm more devoted to uploading them at flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/kellementology/sets/72157623119017742/ and the 365 Project http://365project.org/kellypea/365. It has already made for an interesting start to the year!

  • Obsessive compulsive photographer January 29, 2010 06:43 am

    Here's a tip that is imparitive for a successful project: sit down with your family and talk through the commitment you are about to make. They will sacrifice time for your project. Shooting, editing and posting every day consumes more time than you might think. Make sure they are behind you 100% or you may have a unhappy spouse.

  • Jeff January 29, 2010 06:40 am

    Tip #2 seems crucial. Almost every day I see something and wonder why the heck I did't have my camera with me. Great Article!

  • Ross Cataldo January 29, 2010 06:34 am

    Its been 29 days since i started www.project365.com.au, I must say some good tips above as its not as easy as it sounds. Most days my time is limited to when i can take shots but lately i have been keeping my camera with me so this has made a big diffrence.

    I also got a few other also doing this with me and we keep each other on track, this is also another tip, if a group of you do it togeather it does help alot even though we all shot very diffrent things we inspire each other to do better.

    I must say i have leant alot in the past 29 days and am learning something new every day which is what i wanted. 29 days down 336 togo

    Good luck to you all

    Ross Cataldo


  • Lauren January 29, 2010 05:53 am

    Great timing!! My 1st child will be born "hopefully" a month from now and I was thinking of starting small and doing 100 Days of Delia (her name). This just inspired me to just go for it and do 365 days. I really hope it will strengthen my abilities as a photographer and get me to think outside the box. I don't want to take the typical cute baby shots. I want to be creative and get shots of things we did that day or things that inspired me that Delia did. I'm super stoked about the whole thing!!!

  • Dov Harrinhyon January 29, 2010 05:39 am

    I completely agree with every item on the list. I started this project February 1, 2009 after reading the idea on photojojo.com. There were a few times out of the year that it felt like more of a chore than a creative project and I wish I had some of the points in this list available to me then. Namely, there will be days where you will have 5 or 6 great ideas for photos but you only use one. Other, you will be scrambling for anything to shoot. Write those ideas down and save them for the latter.

    I have a few days left of my project. You can view it at http://www.flickr.com/photos/idovermani/sets/72157613329246226/.

    Good luck all.

  • Naidu January 29, 2010 05:20 am

    Excellent write-up. Very helpful....!! Thanks.

  • Noel January 29, 2010 04:50 am

    Jim, great article! Thanks for featuring pictures of my son Jack to accompany your excellent tips! As most of the comments state, taking a picture a day is not easy. If I were starting out, i would definitely take into consideration these tips!

    My advice is, don't be discouraged if you miss a day, hit a creative rut, or are starting out in the middle of a year. I must admit, I miss a day or two here or there, but will compensate on another day where I capture multiple photos. There are times I hit a creative rut, but find that stepping outside of my comfort zone helps fill the void while learning something new. Lastly, don't be afraid to start on any given day. You don't have to start on January 1st...heck, I started in March 2007 after my son was born, and I have not stopped![eimg link='http://www.flickr.com/photos/noeltykay/4234166958/' title='JFK - Day 250/365 Year 3' url='http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4019/4234166958_8550f403dc.jpg']

  • Caroline January 29, 2010 04:05 am

    forgot to say - my 365 address is www.365inpictures.blogspot.com - come see me :D

  • Caroline January 29, 2010 04:04 am

    I've been doing a sort-of 365 since March last year. It's not actually a picture a day, more like 'a year in pictures'. I have TRIED to shoot every day, but my life is not that variable and it's been difficult at times ~ especially in the winter months, when we are inside so much and all I have is my not-so-fantastic on-camera flash! I'm hoping to start again next year and maybe do more of a 'proper' 365. I may even have a 'proper' camera by then! :D Great tips to bear in mind though :D - Thanx!

  • Lorraine January 29, 2010 03:46 am

    I am totally inspired to try this! it is the perfect day; it has just snowed; the snow is thick and wet and hanging on the branches of the trees. It definitely looks like a winter wonderland!

  • Terra Rathai January 29, 2010 03:41 am

    Thanks for the great tips. I am 28 days into my project 365 and I can't believe how much my eye and awareness have improved already. Some days it's a bit of a stress coming up with an image I'm willing to put out in the world but most of the time I'm amazed by the things I see when I have my camera in hand!

    Check out my project at: http://avantgarden365.wordpress.com and let me know what you think!

  • Hussain Shafei January 29, 2010 03:33 am

    Day 28 for my 365 Project, Great article. It was very helpfull.

    feel free to check out my DAY 28 http://www.flickr.com/photos/hussainshafei/4311749370/in/set-72157622987739591/

    The 365 Project really helped me to improve me photographic mind.. I highly suggest anyone to start!

  • rayswrld January 29, 2010 03:25 am

    I am a real beginner in photography but decided to start a 365 project to see if it helps in learning more about my camera and basic photography. So far I have managed to not miss a day, but have resorted to some pictures taken with my point and shoot and my cell phone. Going forward I am going to try to concentrate on using my Rebel XT, but can't make any promises. These tips should help me with the project, but I have something to offer. My project is on a blog site and if you miss a day uploading, but took the picture you can change the date so it reflects the proper day. I have done this on two occasions.

  • SFDenverLV January 29, 2010 03:13 am

    I'd been using Flickr to upload my 365 project but came across ShutterCal.com to track my daily progress. Wonderful, supportive community and intuitive interface.

  • mssphotos January 28, 2010 02:56 pm

    Thanks for such a wonderful article that motivates new and amateur to take up more challenges. I am motivated and as I was also thinking of committing myself to do something like this. This article came in time. I am glad I read this.

    I started my Project365 from today at my blog at http://mssphotos.wordpress.com. If you would care to follow this blog, I’d love any comments, criticisms and advice all along the way. I hope you will enjoy

  • Kevin O'Rourke January 28, 2010 02:02 pm

    I am a member of a website, http://www.blipfoto.com which is a wonderful community of people who have the opportunity to post only one picture every day. One of the great things about the site is that there is lots of encouragement for you to complete your 365 (and beyond) day project.

  • bryan January 28, 2010 09:28 am

    RE: 8. Edit & Post-Process Every Week

    I just started my 365 this year, automation is key to cut down processing and posting time! Plugins used for Adobe Lightroom 2:

    OnOne Lightroom presets (FREE)

    LR2/Mogrify (limited use, donation)

    Jeffrey’s "Export to Flickr" Lightroom Plugin (limited use, donation)

  • Printing Companies January 28, 2010 05:59 am

    Oh this list was very helpful. I am going to use these tips when i start my amateur photograph!

  • Robin Ryan January 28, 2010 03:51 am

    I've started one this year using only my iPhone's camera. Incidentally, it's my first month home after 9 months away from Canada, so it's also a story of my re-learning my home. You can see the first month here: http://mylostwords.blogspot.com/2010/01/month-at-home.html

    I'm posting them as Polaroids because it feels more like a collection of memories and experiences.

  • Zack Jones January 27, 2010 10:19 pm

    If you belong to one of the 365 groups on flickr upload your photos in a timely manner. I'm working my way through Project365 (day 225) and fell behind in uploading my photos. There's a 40 photo per month limit so even though I have photos ready to upload to the group I can't because I've already maxed out for the month.

    - In my experience 365 projects are hard. More than once I've taken a picture of some random thing (such as the clock showing 11:57 PM just so I wouldn't miss a day).

    - Odds are you will miss a day. If it happens don't worry about it. What I do is upload a place holder image for that day saying that I forgot.

    - Not ready to commit to 365 - check out the 52 week projects. There you'll upload a photo per week instead of one per day.

    If you're bored head over to http://www.flickr.com/photos/zackojones/sets/72157619706517362/ and check out my Project365 Set.

  • Dennyboy January 27, 2010 09:18 pm

    I did a 365/2009 last year, what did i learn??

    Its tougher than you think if you dont want to take any old image a day, plan ahead, if you see a shot take it, take your camera everywhere. The main thing i learnt was everything there is to know about my camera and its settings and i shoot manual now. Also my composition and use of light is very much improved and i see more things to photograph from different perspectives now.

  • Daniel Antunes January 27, 2010 07:28 pm

    I started my 365 project this year too (http://daniel365days.blogspot.com) and I'm on day 26 right now. The tips on this article are really helpful. Even thought I'm just at the beginning of this project I've already learned a lot! I fell I've improved my skills, not only handling my camera and all it's options and settings but specially on the way I look to every day objects. Another skill where I think I'm really improving is composition. For those of you who have the time and interest I really recommend trying this project! It's amazing how much I've learned in such a shot period! Go for it!

  • Sime January 27, 2010 05:00 pm

    We've just changed part of our forum and as a result, I've slipped in a specific 365 section where people can share their journey.


    See you in the forums!


  • oliverignacio January 27, 2010 03:14 pm

    365 project looks exhausting... try photo a week

  • barbara January 27, 2010 02:19 pm

    Timely advice. I am doing my Project 365 for the first time. As a very amateur photographer who is, shall we say, of slightly mature vintage, I feel I have missed out on many years of photography and have so many ideas running around in my head, but could still see taking a photo a day as a daunting project. I have been on holiday so far so it has been quite easy, but when I go back to work I feel I may struggle for ideas. Thank you - I now have many many more ideas.
    My blog;

  • darrah January 27, 2010 01:10 pm

    These are great tips! I just hit a lull in my 365 project and am feeling a little more inspired after reading all of these ideas. In addition to putting together my own list of suggestions for those days when I'm "just not feelin' it," I am also active on Flickr and am a big fan of weekly challenges.

  • risdania January 27, 2010 12:09 pm

    hmm...i'll try it,,sometimes i'll need new idea,,

  • Mei Teng January 27, 2010 10:46 am

    I like the idea of experimenting and trying out new things. Great photo illustrations. I like the one with President Obama.

  • Trina January 27, 2010 09:34 am

    Great ideas! I joined the Project 365 group on flickr for my first 365. There are some great theme ideas in the discussions. http://www.flickr.com/groups/project_365/

  • Alison January 27, 2010 09:24 am

    Excellent ideas, in the other comments too. I also started my 365 project on 1st January and am slightly surprised I've made it this far, but these tips will all help. There have been days when opportunities have leapt out at me and days when I've been scratching my head for inspriation (like today!) For me it's been great to have to think more creatively, to find something worth capturing. Weird thing the other day, I was watching the tv and realised I was noticing the colour of the light, never done that before. Coincidence....?

    One thing I started at the weekend was to put together a photobook with all my pictures so far, if I get to the end of the year I'm going to get it printed so I've got something to look back on and show off! It'll be a record of what I've been up to as well as, hopefully, a way of being able to see my progress.

  • christine January 27, 2010 08:42 am

    I only have a few weeks left to go on my first 365 project (http://crapmanagement.com). It really has been a great experience, not only for the growth of my photography skills, but also for the renewed perspective it has given me on our day-to-day lives. Having this photo record of the year is invaluable.

    All good tips, too. I upload just about every day, which helps keep me in the routine. I would add that one way to keep yourself on task is to make sure you let friends & family know about your project! Put your photos on your blog or flickr stream & your fans will keep you accountable!

  • abbp January 27, 2010 07:48 am

    Nice tips, I'm thinking also to keep the unpublished photos for a later review and maybe re-shoot the scene. This analyzing work I think it helps to improve the composition/aesthetic skills. We'll see...

  • Trudy January 27, 2010 05:43 am

    Great tips! This is my first year doing a 365 project and it has been a blast. I find more people asking me what the picture of the day will be versus what client/project shoot am I working with next. LOL. Lots of fun.

  • Jesse January 27, 2010 05:28 am

    All excellent advice, of which I've made use of for the first 25 days of my project. A few I think are particularly important would be:

    1. Have a routine - Day 1 was probably the hardest. I feel like I have momentum now and ideas are all around me. I set up a daily reminder in iCal that syncs to my iPhone just in case I'm really busy and need to be reminded. Very helpful.

    2. Use a notebook - I picked up a small Moleskine (I've wanted an excuse to buy one) that when ideas pop into my head I jot them down. I prefer writing rather than typing the ideas in because they stick in my head better. I have a list of things I'd like to shoot, places I'd like to shoot, functions I'd like to explore with my camera, etc.

    3. Try hard to upload a photo a day. Taking 1 a day is the real goal of the project, but when you share this with friends/family, they begin to look forward to what you come up with. I went away this weekend with no access to the internet and had people asking where the 3 days were. I had no idea people were looking forward to my daily upload!

  • Garry January 27, 2010 05:09 am

    I did this in 2008 and although it was worthwhile and I learned loads, it was hard work...
    one tip I'd add is to try and start taking the days pics as early in the morning as you can.. invariably there were many nights when I suddenly realised I hadn't managed to take a shot and then rushed around the house 'making do'.

  • Eric M January 27, 2010 04:26 am

    I'm nearing the home stretch of a PAD, but one where I just publish a Photo-A-Day, because I had so many pics I had taken and were just sitting on my computer.

    On my birthday, when one year will be up, I think I'm switching to a 'take a photo-a-day' project.

  • Nick@Subject2.com January 27, 2010 04:10 am

    The pic of the president is awesome!

    Regardless if you like or don't like him, that will be one pic that kid grows up to be proud of having. Cheers to the parents and photographer for that.

  • Alan Nielsen January 27, 2010 04:05 am

    I agree with having a camera with you all the time. Last year I gave up on my project because it became too much work to lug out the camera and lights every day. Now that I have an iPhone, I can capture a cool image anywhere/anytime. I have not missed a day yet. I may have posted a day late, but the picture was still taken each day.

  • Jennifer January 27, 2010 03:59 am

    wonderful tips, on my blog I am uploading the pics twice a week but felt that today I had no idea whatsoever what to shoot, so your entry came at the right time. Thanks :-)

  • Larry J. Rutledge January 27, 2010 03:53 am

    Someone sent me an article about this Project 365 concept back in December, I thought it was a great idea and decided to start one on January 1st. I told some friends about it and they all excitedly jumped in as well. So this comes at a very good time, because already less than a month into it I find myself at the end of the day realizing I didn't get a photo and then scrambling to find something that works.

    Some good ideas in here, especially about planning ahead. Thanks for this.

    If you care, you can follow my project at: www.myphoto365.com and if you want to see all my friends click on the "Links" link in the menu.

    Hope to see others join this ... it's a fun project for sure

  • Greg Taylor January 27, 2010 03:45 am

    This is the first year I am committed to a Photo 365. I wrote a blog post about it and made my commitment public as well as spoke to other photographers about what inspired their Photo 365 (http://bit.ly/abp5mR) . This year my project is self portraits. I have a tripod set up in my studio just for this project and I plan on making a time lapse video to document my changes over 2010.

    I edit and post process every week and it has been a lot of fun. The best advice is leveraged (stolen) from Nike - "Just Do It!" - start any day and commit to it!

  • Cynnes Gwyn January 27, 2010 03:34 am

    What great timing! I've already slowed down on my first 365 and just last night thought I might try something like a word or theme. You explained it perfectly. Thanks!

  • Tom January 27, 2010 03:04 am

    thanks for the suggestions, I'll put in practice on mine!

  • sioux falls cars January 27, 2010 02:43 am

    Why would you want to do a 365 project?

  • Erin January 27, 2010 02:23 am

    the hardest part for me is coming up with ideas. I found a Twitter feed that has daily topics for daily photos. http://twitter.com/dailyshoot website: http://dailyshoot.com/ it's challenging to come up with a photo for each idea they present.

  • Prosens January 27, 2010 02:13 am

    My project takes only 2 weeks but I'm happy that it started, I would recommend this project to each

  • TheKingInYellow January 27, 2010 01:16 am

    All great tips! My Project365 is on Day 25, and it's been forcing me to look for photographs everywhere. I end up doing a lot of object shots in a lightbox, but I've learned so much already!

    I'd love comment, criticism and advice if anyone wants to follow along: http://photorook.blogspot.com

    I've only started shooting since late August, but I think I am growing as a photographer by leaps and bounds!

  • Timo January 27, 2010 12:42 am

    (For some reason my comment did not show up, so I am trying again - if you will get a duplicate comment, feel free to delete this comment here)

    I have been doing a Project 365 myself (http://fotografzahl.wordpress.com) and I agree with all these tips - they are really the essentials. I am at Day 150 today.
    The main reasons for doing such a project is that you will get better as a photographer, try out new ideas/cameras/lenses/concepts and at the end you will be able to look back at a year - above all, it's fun!

    I can only recommend doing such a project or someting similar.

  • dcclark January 27, 2010 12:24 am

    Boy did this article show up at a perfect time for me! After (not even) a month of my 365, I've been stretching for ideas. Thanks! I especially like the idea of going with a weekly theme -- it has (already) helped me focus a lot more. Sometimes even weekly themes aren't necessary, just a theme from one day to the next -- earlier this week I did a couple on old mining locations (which are nearby). Just having two or three helps from day to day.