Commercial Product Photography Photographer

365 Day Challenge – Beginning

Day 2 365 Day Challenge – Motion Blur

Join The 365 Day Challenge – Beginnings

Want to join in on the challenge any work on bettering your own photography? Let me know!

As I’ve posted on my Instagram and Facebook pages, I’ve decided to do a 365 day  challenge for a year. I’ve started this challenge in an effort to continually improve my skill set and to explore new ideas and practices that I may have never even considered.

I’m doing this in the hopes that at the end of 365 days, I will see a drastic difference and improvement in my overall skill in photography. Also, the challenge is to improve upon my ability to daily commit to a goal; Step by step, picture by picture. Check out my progress on the 365 challenge portfolio collection here.

In order to complete this challenge, I’ve laid out five simple rules:

Rule One (and most important): I must shoot in Manual Mode on my DSLR camera.

This is very specific in order to improve upon my understanding of exposure and learning how to better compensate for different lighting situations. By shooting in manual mode, the camera is no longer taking guess work away. In this way, I HAVE to do the thinking and adjusting myself.

Manual mode includes: ISO, Aperture, Shutter Speed, AND White Balance.

Specifically, white balance is important to me. Today’s cameras adjust really well to white balance, but sometimes taking control of the balance is necessary. It also will help me understand differences in light, and when there are two different types of light. For instance, the lights in a wedding reception are typically fairly yellow, however, the flash needed to light those events and help get a better quality image is pretty blue. Without using a CTO gel, a viewer / client can see that difference between the yellow and blue and it will actually change the color of the faces, dresses, flowers, and more.

The other three aspects of ISO, aperture, and shutter speed will help improve upon the type of photo I’m taking. I.E. on day 2, I posted images of moving cars (see sample below) with blurry backgrounds. It was necessary to use a slow shutter speed to get this affect. I also  learned that it will take a LOT of practice to do well!

Motion Blur Street Photography

Rule Two: I Have to Post Daily

This has to do with my commitment to the task. I want to ensure, sick or not, time or not, etc, that I take a 5 minute moment to even take a simple picture and ensure I’m continuing to practice.

In all honesty, this is the easy part because I’m pretty passionate about photography.

Rule Three: Try for a different photo each time

I don’t want to take the same image of the same flower 4 times. Do something different. Find a different composition. Pick unique genres often. Try different filters and lighting set ups. Shoot at day and at night.

Rule Four:Use the Same Lens

For the first 6 months I will use my 18-55mm lens and the second 6 months my 70-300mm. This is specific to this challenge only. The end goal is to learn the lenses inside and out. What they can do and what they can’t. Where do they shine and when do I need to compensate. In landscapes, so many people think you need to use the widest lens possible to capture the whole scene, and yet focusing on a specific aspect could provide the more memorable and storytelling image.

Rule Five: Edit each image

I may not need to edit much, but I want to go through the entire process, as well as, see how images react to editing. If I wanted a moody shot, did I pick up enough detail to be able to produce that shot? Would changing my exposure provide more data? Etc.


So I’ve already started this challenge on 2/21/2019. I hope to post my thoughts and what I have learned with each image on a weekly basis in a journal like format. If you do want to join in, please do! Just post your images in the comments of the blog posts on Facebook. If you have questions about anything, please don’t hesitate to ask!


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