day 365: the narcissistic dog
Today my 365 project is coming to an end with this picture taken at the Mauerpark flea market yesterday. If you have been following my blog regularly over the last year, then you probably know that I am interested in a wide range of subjects. Photography, art, tango argentino, technology, literature, music, movies, marine conservation, heck, I even wrote about historical buildings here in Berlin from time to time. Sometimes it’s hard to choose among the many things I could be doing and I get overwhelmed by the many possibilities. At other times I get inevitably pushed into a certain direction and stumble into the next step by pure chance. I am still figuring out where all this might lead, but I do believe that I am moving somewhere, as vague as that may sound. What I am talking about is probably something like a vague inkling on where I want to move “artistically”.
Whenever things come to an end, when goals are achieved or at the end of clearly marked periods of time we automatically think back, evaluate, judge, and possibly also ponder the logical next step. Today marks one of these moments for me.
Many times when I’ve achieved goals I have drawn a clear line underneath them and turned my back on whatever it was that I was doing, at least for a while. After finishing my bachelor degree I switched fields and after getting my Masters degree I shifted my focus again. I have too many interests to stay put, too many goals not to keep shifting my attention, or that’s what I have always told myself. However, when it comes to skills and their development I know from experience in other fields that a year is hardly enough to scratch the surface, especially in an area like photography that has such a vast number of techniques and subjects to explore.
The goal of this project was to get back into photography after not pursuing it for a few years. Before I started the project I didn’t know my camera very well. I didn’t know anything about correct exposure, about aperture or shutter speed and therefore I was shooting in automatic mode. I didn’t know anything about focal lengths or different lenses and I had only the kit lens to play with. During this year I have learned a lot about my camera, I have learnt about exposure settings and measuring light, about lenses and about post-processing. I moved to shooting manually, I got a fast prime lens and ultimately I even got an old soviet rangefinder camera for shooting film. I moved away from shooting urban spaces and towards street photography.
To be honest, I’ve actually come much further than I would have expected. Yes, I think I have achieved a lot in this year and fulfilled the goal of this project, but I still want more.
For the next year my goal is to really get into analog photography, to properly get the hang of shooting with my Zorki and to be able to develop my own film at home. I want to learn also from reading about photography, looking at the work of great photographers and from actually learning about art and art history. After a year of taking pictures daily I feel that there is still so much to explore, so much to learn and so much to try. I’m only at the beginning, and I hope you will join me here also in the next year of my journey.