This was a super fun, relatively low key, and very meaningful project. Many thanks to the good folks at 1 Second Everyday both for the inspiration and also the app. I highly encourage folks give it a shot. Try it for a week or a month, and see how you like it.
I also highly encourage folks to take on a making-everyday project, whether it’s for a week, a month, a year, or even longer. This was my second 365 project — I did a photo a day project in 2015. Once again, I learned a lot, I got to exercise some new creative storytelling muscles, and I had a lot of fun (I took this one much less seriously than my photography project). Most importantly, it helped me deepen many of my relationships, and it reminded me of the beauty that surrounds me every day. It was a great way to end the decade. Happy New Year!
I’m a private person. Over the years, I’ve found a nice balance between living and working openly while maintaining personal boundaries. I’m consistently surprised by the benefits of being selectively open and vulnerable in public.
My Photo-A-Day project has pushed these boundaries. On the one hand, I’m not that excited by how much I’ve shared about my life, even when they’ve only been tiny windows. On the other hand, what I have shared has resulted in deeper relationships with many people I care about. All in all, it’s been net positive.
Still, I feel discomfort, especially when I’m not feeling great. 2015 has been a stellar year overall, but I’m human, and I have my ups and downs. I’m going through one of those down periods now. It’s nothing serious — no one is dying, thank goodness. I’m going to get through it just fine, and I most definitely don’t want any sympathy. But forcing myself to continue publishing photos that tell an authentic story while also maintaining personal boundaries has been tough. I’ll be glad when this project is over.
I’ve found over the years that you mostly just have to wait out times like these. Sure, I have my coping mechanisms: basketball, music, food, family, friends, etc. They all work to some extent. But there’s really only one thing that consistently helps: Making things.
Make a picture. Make a tool. Write something down. Doodle. Make change. Make music. Make trouble. Make love. Just make something. Express yourself through making. And whatever you do, don’t be nice. Be you. Feel what you feel, and be okay with it.
Though human ingenuity may make various inventions… it will never devise any inventions more beautiful, nor more simple, nor more to the purpose than Nature does; because in her inventions nothing is wanting, and nothing is superfluous, and she needs no counterpoise when she makes limbs proper for motion in the bodies of animals.
Power sometimes comes down to knowing the vocabulary, figuring out how the system works and how to work within it. You need to believe that you deserve to be in the room once you get there.
On functional collaboration:
I met a lot of the people I collaborate with now doing improv, and I’ve had the experience of being in functional creative environments. I don’t think creativity has to come from a place of dysfunction. It can come from nice people with good parents.
On caring and risk-taking:
To some people, not caring is supposed to be cool, commenting is more interesting than doing, and everything is judged and then disposed of in, like, five minutes. I’m not interested in those kinds of people. I like the person who commits and goes all in and takes big swings and then maybe fails or looks stupid; who jumps and falls down, rather than the person who points at the person who fell, and laughs. But I do sometimes laugh when people fall down.