So many days have gone by since starting school and it’s all a blur to me. I think this is what happens when something–in this case, studying–is so consuming as to nullify any awareness of the world around you. On one level, this perception of the passage of time is a good thing, as I want nothing more than to be out of the classroom and in my clinical rotations, learning how to do the stuff I actually want to do; but on another, every day that goes by without so much as registering in my consciousness feels like a waste of a day. And days aren’t exactly an infinite commodity.
There were ways to slow things down that I used to do a lot of. Write. Take pictures. Only nowadays it seems like I don’t have time for that because of school. Well, that’s not entirely accurate. I could make the time, but I need to improve my studying discipline: it presently sucks.
I think I’m going to try to write more in addition to this (and I’m definitely going to have to make sure I’m on the ball with my studies), but because my earlier Project 365 seemed to work brilliantly, here goes one for 2012. And because 2012 is a leap year, it’s actually a Project 366. The aim is the same, though.
So. Let’s begin.
On my last day of being a twentysomething, I thought perhaps I should try to make the 365th photograph somehow meaningful. I drove through the neighborhoods in which I spent my childhood, thinking the familiar might spur my imagination, trying to picture in my mind that last image…eventually coming to the conclusion that I was trying too hard. This wasn’t what I had set out to do one year ago. A photograph I took on that day of an El station seemed to connect nicely with the first photograph I took for the project; but after some thought I figured that I already had enough images of public transportation. In the end, this is what I chose to represent this day, ordinary on one level but with some serendipitous significance, hints of a tangential nature to an as-yet unwritten future. That this project concluded in the same city where it began is no accident; it is the city of my birth, the city I think will always be home.
In between, it was not altogether uninteresting; though there were times where the decidedly uninspired photographs reflected the ordinary, mundane days underlying them, quite a bit happened on both ends of the emotional spectrum. 29 was not without its moments of sorrow and grief, losing an old friend to cancer and having another friend go through a tragedy of his own, but in the realm of things I can control, I can say that 29 was the year I finally, successfully, made my ultimate career move. I think that this year, straddling two chapters of my life as it were, catalyzed a fair amount of introspection that no doubt informed many of the photographs that made it into the project.
On a personal level, I like to think I’ve managed to improve my skills a little along the way and also inject some narrative into the imagery. Having a decent camera on the iPhone helped immensely in keeping up with the demand of generating a photograph each day; using something with considerably fewer controls than what I’m used to certainly forced a different dimension of creativity.
When I began, I said that if I could say I lived and experienced each moment of every day, then I will have been successful. I dare say this to be true. To those who followed this project to its end and offered your comments and support, you have my thanks.
A certain milepost of my life having been reached, I have kicked off my Project 365 [local | flickr | facebook], in which I hope to, as a side effect of the actual goal of the project, make the most of my last days as a twentysomething. Though the project itself is rooted in the present, some days’ images will be more introspective, springboards for reflecting on where I’ve been, how far I’ve come, or how far I have yet to go.
I invite you to join me in finding out where this project takes me.