It started out as a bit of fun, something to look back on and provide evidence of things that happened during the year, and became a really interesting project. Challenging at times, especially when the weather was grey and cold and the last thing I wanted to do was take photos, but always fun. Besides introducing me to lots of new people via flickr and simply getting me out and about more, it as also helped me think more about social media channels overall – which to use to share different things with different groups of friends, contacts or family, how the more specialist tools can feed into the more commonly used ones (and vice versa) with very little extra effort. It has also fed my obsession with statistics. Flickr offers rich behind the scenes information and it has been fascinating to keep an eye on these through the year – finding out how people find my photos and in some cases, where they end up. Some of the images which I thought nothing of  – just a snatched photo taken during my lunchbreak – have had the highest views.

I’ve seen people drop out of the 365 groups on flickr because they felt that the pressure to produce at least one photo every day has meant they felt unable to take the sort of photos they wanted to. A shame, but not a worry I’ve had. Looking at a wide cross section of other peoples photos has given me inspiration for different angles to approach a subject, but as I have always leaned towards recording the moment rather than creating a work of art, I haven’t felt that pressure. One area I am envious of others however, is in taking photos of people.  Only about 18 images from the whole year have contained recognisable people – and 6 or 7 of those were either performers, or ‘celebrity’ visitors who appeared at work. I enjoy looking at the sort of street photography that fellow members of the Medway Towns flickr group produce, and Paul Clarke never fails to inspire with his recording of what would at first appear to be quite mundane events.

As I mentioned, I didn’t have an aim beyond recording the year. If asked, I would have said that my preference was for photos of wildlife/nature, beautiful scenery, interesting buildings such as castles or grand palaces – but also for recording things that are in danger of disappearing. Oh yes, and it may have become obvious during the year that I love libraries and owls. However, looking back over the year, while some of these preferences have definitely featured large, I’ve also experimented a bit – and as mentioned above, its been interesting to notice which photos have captured other peoples attention – either prompting comment (134 during the year), or, the ultimate compliment of either being marked as a favourite (22) or even added to a gallery.

Some fairly random statistics follow:

Total images posted in the diary set: 365 (hurrah – mission accomplished!)

Most viewed: Explore Your library, with 133 views. Interesting to note, my second most viewed was also a library – Victoria library (another lunchbreak walk) with 102 views

Front window of St James Library - located in Westminster City Hall

Explore your library

Least viewed: tricky, as of course some have been live for a much shorter time – however there is a small batch of fairly un-noticed photos, probably just viewed by close family! which have fewer than 10 views
Number of diary images which appear in top 20 all time most viewed:2
Number of diary images wich appear in top 20 all time ‘most interesting’:6 – which includes a relatively new entry as the top ranked photo according to flickr’s definition of “interestingness” – my collection of tiny owl models, with 45 views, 8 favourites and 5 comments.

Owl collection

Owl collection

nb I have been publishing to flickr for over 4 years, and have nearly 1,500 photos live.

Total views of photo diary images during 2010: 8,680

Average views of each photo diary image: 24

Total views of all published photos during 2010: 22,577

Categories published:

local (Kent) -108
of which: Rochester and surrounding towns (scenes, events or details) -95
of which: home (garden and views) -23

Personal (souvenirs or general home photos) -11

Family related -8

Event driven (either calendar date such as Easter or saints day, or local, such as a festival) -41

London -76
Of which: work related -8
Or, only taken because they are close to work -31

Travels (includes day trips and weekends away from home)-55

Wildlife –
Flora -43
Fauna -17

Plus animals in art – either sculpture or model: 14

Produce (crops/harvest) -11

Owl related -11

Libraries -9

Unesco heritage sites -6
nb I did visit a couple through the year, but for some reason, they didn’t all make it as diary photos!

Abstract -12

Transport –
trains -8
boats -6
planes -5
other -2

Sky -15
Of which: sunset -6
sunrise -7

Weather focus (rain, snow) -26

Finally, to those of you who have looked at my photos, I hope you have enjoyed them. And yes, I am going to continue the project – maybe try out different themes, definitely try and improve my skills in photographing people. My main advice for anyone thinking about doing this sort of project:

  1. ALWAYS have your camera with you,
  2. Dont despair – recording even the most mundane things like your dinner will usually bring back a smile when you look back,
  3. Dont rush to take easy things – if they will be there tomorrow, better to capture something fleeting which relates to the day
  4. Enjoy it!

Not sure if I’ll ever come close to the amazing Jamie Livingston who I blogged about earlier this year,  but who knows!

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