Erica’s 365 Project – 2011

While this is a travel photography blog, today’s post leans more heavily on the photography aspect.

On January 1st, 2011, I began a 365 Project.

The idea was to take a photo of myself every day for a year.


The rules for 365 projects vary — some suggest photographing anything you want to during the day; the sky is the limit. If something catches your eye, take a picture, and that counts for that particular day. But I’d seen other 365 projects where the photographer only shoots himself / herself, which seemed like a bigger challenge. How could I photograph the same thing everyday (me) and still make it interesting? Plus, as any photographer will tell you, it’s hard to get photos of yourself when you’re always behind the camera. To further complicate things, I usually don’t like how I look in pictures. This was not a vanity project! But the challenges appealed to me.





I kept it up for six months but by summertime I was too far behind to catch up. That said, I’m proud I stuck with the 365 project for as long as I did. As the weeks went on, I was forced to be more creative and come up with new angles or ways of looking at the subject. I wish I’d completed it for the sole purpose of seeing how wacky and inventive my shots would have been by the end of the year.



My favorite images are of me in my daily environment; photos that establish a strong sense of space. Looking at them now transports me back to my old condo, the balcony at work, and my near-nightly walks in Toluca Lake.



As I noted, all of these photos were taken in 2011. I’m somewhat embarrassed to share them now because I’ve grown as a photographer and cringe at some of my choices. If I were shooting these today, I would remember to white balance my camera and I’d properly expose the images! But they show how my style has evolved so on that level I appreciate these photos.





I compiled the images into a short video below. It’s set to the song “Freedom” by Kerrigan-Lowdermilk, a composer-lyricist team who write for musical theater. I picked this song for the simple reasons that I can’t get it out of my head and it roughly fit the length of the video.




Check out the images and let me know what you think. Would you ever start a 365 project of your own?

8 thoughts on “Erica’s 365 Project – 2011

  1. So thoroughly enjoyed your presentation and perseverance (even if it was half a year). You inspire me to take the same challenge. I just returned from traveling for a year and can definitely cull from my tens of thousands of photos, but I think that misses the point. While it’s still a lot of work to diligently post every day (did you post every day’s shots, or just compile the video after six months and unveil your masterpiece then?)

    Anyway, are you planning on meeting Pamela on your adventure? I’ve now got the bug again and I’ve only been home a couple of months. Would be great to be able to make some money photographing to finance a trip :)

    Looking forward to following your journey.


    • Thanks Phil! When I did this project two years ago, I started a Tumblr blog to post each day’s photo. I didn’t tell many people about it at the time so once I started this travel photography blog I was excited to finally have a good platform to share it. The video was just the fastest way to show that number of images in a digestible span of time, and then I just picked a handful of my other favorites for the post. Glad you liked it!! It was a challenging experiment and, as I wrote, I wish I’d continued just to see how far it would have pushed me creatively the second half of the year. Maybe I’ll complete the 365 challenge in a future year, who knows!

      I don’t think my travel plans will overlap with Pamela’s, although I’d love to meet up with her!!

  2. Wow. You have really made so many aspects of everyday life very interesting using such creative perspectives. I am genuinely very impressed and I have to also say that you have a great deal of talent in getting well exposed shots in what I know to be very tricky situations. Its a subtle skill but also a very difficult one to master and its almost just a side note in your pictures because the picture itself is so engaging.

    Anyways, enough gushing by me. Well done. I really liked this post.

    • Thank you so much, Philip! I just clicked through and saw your photo project; the images are beautiful. I especially like your long exposure shots. Thank you for your kind words!

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