This past month, I participated in a challenge issued by an Australian blogger, Chantelle at fatmumslim. She provided a list of prompts – one for each day of the month — and asked all participants to share a photo each day based on the prompts. The idea of taking a photo every day isn’t new, but Chantelle’s colorful, lovely list caught on like wildfire. Over 800,000 images were shared during the month of February as part of #FebPhotoADay.
I loved doing this, and I didn’t miss a day. You can see all 29 of my photos on this Pinterest board. Today the March challenge begins, and once again the list of prompts is filled with possibilities.
Here are five reasons why you should get on board for March. Whether you’re a great photographer or you just snap occasional images on your phone’s camera, it doesn’t matter. The point isn’t really the quality of the images. It’s about stopping for a few minutes every day to do something creative.
1. You’ll look at the world differently.
Most of the prompts are not very specific, which means you’ll walk around all day looking for something that fits. You notice things you would’ve overlooked otherwise, and you see familiar things in a whole new light.
2. You’ll become a better photographer.
I’ve always liked taking pictures, but I really learned a lot from the challenge in February. Whenever possible, I tried to use a real camera. I experimented with a number of new techniques and dared myself to try manual settings. But I even got much more comfortable using the camera on my iPhone.
3. You’ll see some amazing images.
There are thousands of pictures shared every day, but even if you just look at a couple of them, it’s really fun to see how other people interpreted the prompt. I saw images from all over the world, as well as pictures posted by people closer to home — my mom did the challenge with me, and I loved seeing her photos every day too.
4. You’ll have a really unique photo journal of your month.
I tried as often as possible for my images to reflect something about that day – where I was, what I was doing, who I was with. Most days, I took many more pictures than the one I shared for the challenge. I engaged my kids in the process too. I often used them as subjects or used their ideas for interpreting the prompts. It became a family project. And my 7-year-old is planning to do March.
5. You’ll get really whizzy with Instagram, if you have an iPhone.
For better or for worse, Instagram is the app of choice for sharing pictures via iPhone. There are a lot of nice things about it (though I wish all the functionality weren’t limited exclusively to iPhones). Chantelle just did a post with some great tips for using Instagram - that’s a good place to start if you’re new to this app. If you don’t have an iPhone, don’t let that stop you. Share via Twitter, Facebook, or Pinterest or just keep the images to yourself and enjoy them.
Even if you don’t want to share your photos out to the world, or if you don’t want to do it every day, bookmark the list and try — just try — to take a few pictures in March. I think you’ll thank me at the end of the month. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go take a picture of something that’s “up.”
About Sheri Gurock
Sheri is an entrepreneur and mother of three living in Brookline, MA. Together with her husband, Eli, she owns Magic Beans, a toy and baby gear retail business with five stores in the Boston area. Sheri is the editor of Surprises, a Magic Beans publication about parenting, kids, gear and toys, and she’s been blogging for Magic Beans since 2005.
Sheri discovered Mothering Magazine almost 10 years ago on the recommendation of her Bradley Method teacher, and is thrilled to be a contributor to this site.