365/365 – The final stop

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Date: 1st January 2012

Time: 18:29

Post: 001

“If you look at this project as just taking a picture every day for the next year, it doesn’t sound quite as daunting as saying “this is going to take me a year to complete!””
– Ben Lowe, 001/365 – Merry New Year

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Almost twelve months ago to the day I started Project 365, and here we are on the final post of the series. Re-reading my first blog Merry New Year brings it all back. I could never have imagined that I’d make it to the end because part of me didn’t think I would! When I decided that I wanted to take on a project as big as this, I’ll be the first to admit that I was a little daunted at the thought of what lay ahead of me. A year of taking pictures is not as easy as it first sounds!

It’s been an exciting year; plenty has happened. There have been some notable big events which will always be remembered, some of which I’m going to reflect on now.

It was lovely to be part of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations earlier in the year despite our day in London being rather damp to say the least. We spent the majority of our time fighting through crowds trying to find the best vantage point to see the river pageant. Finally, our endless walking paid off and I managed to capture a few images at the end of procession. Well worth getting soaked to the bone for.

Another event you may have heard me mention once or twice throughout the year was a little sporting competition called the Olympics. London 2012 has to have been one of the things I’m most proud of this year; as the host city “we delivered” and it was a privilege to be British. You might remember reading about my struggle to get tickets, as well as my rather unhealthy addiction to Olympic Memorabilia (I think I may have mentioned it a few times!) Well, August saw me finally get hold of some tickets for the Paralympics – to say I was ecstatic would have been an understatement. All the hours spent staring at “no tickets” messages on the London 2012 website was worth it when I got tickets to see the Archery and have a nose around the Olympic Park. September 4th 2012 will be a day that lives long in my memory.

2012 has also been witness to my continual struggle (for want of a better word) to find a new job. You’ve heard about my countless interviews at recruitment agencies, teaching myself percentages again for the nPower assessment and of course my many rants when agencies weren’t doing what they’re meant to! Still, the search will continue and 2013 has to be it. There’s so many things I want to do, moving out being the main one and sadly you need money for that!

I’ve been lucky enough to have two fantastic holidays this year, one with friends during the summer and then a week with the family in October, incidentally both at the same place. I really enjoy visiting new seaside destinations, they all hold special memories. Of course, none of them will be able to replace the childhood memories from Barmouth and Llandudno, but these new resorts will be special for different reasons.

What else has 2012 held? Who could forget my Eurovision party back in May, that was a fantastic night. I’ve often wanted to host one of these but the actual contest has always crept up on me and it’s been too late to organise one. After spending a week making all the different flags, searching eBay for any exciting Eurovision games and buying way too much food, the party went ahead without a hitch. I have to say it was a very enjoyable night; one that will surely be repeated every year from now on!

Looking back at all the images I’ve taken this year will always remind of the exciting things that have happened, as well as some of the not so exciting! It’s been one mega journey and now we’ve arrived at the finale, I find myself met with mixed feelings. On the one hand I shall miss having a daily outlet to share my images, rants and successes, but the other side of the coin is that I won’t be met with the task of having to write a post late at night after just coming in from work. If you look back I’m sure you would be able to tell which ones I’m half asleep on! It’ll be strange waking up tomorrow knowing that I haven’t ‘got to’ write a post and take a photo. Saying that, this last post isn’t where the project ends. There’s more to come in the shape of the eagerly awaited and long talked about Project 365 book which can now be given my full attention. Looking back, compiling it as I went along may have been the more sensible idea, but as with everything time runs away with you and something always seems to come up. Keep your eyes peeled for its arrival, you’ll be the first to know when it’s completed!

I hope my daily diary posts have kept you entertained over the last 365 days, they’ve certainly kept me busy! Surprisingly I think I’ve only missed posting on the actual day about 7/8 times which I think is quite impressive.

I did contemplate writing a series of retrospectives similar to those I did half way through the project when I was away on my holidays, but I’ve since decided against that – I didn’t want to bore the socks off you all! Feel free to re-acquaint yourselves with posts past though should you find yourself at a loose end!

I wanted the final image of the project to be a little quirky; an image that summarised the whole year in one go, one that would be a fitting end to an exciting journey. I had a number of ideas, one being printing all the images and photographing myself throwing them into the air. Whilst it sounded good in my head, the practicality of it was wasn’t so – the weather played a big part in this decision! I also knew that I wanted to be in the last image, and after much deliberation, and a rather long amount of time spent on Google finding out how to install a Photoshop plug-in to make this work, the final image was completed. I think it sums up the project rather well.

And that’s it! I’ve nothing left to say. Just before I sign off, I’d just like to extend my greatest thanks to everyone who’s been part of this project, I couldn’t have done it without you. Whether you’ve been part of an image, waited for me endless times when we’ve been out and about whilst I stop to take a photo, promoted my page, blog and/or website through the wonderful means of social networks, or for just being there and listening to my ideas, plans and rants; I thank you from the bottom of my heart, it means a lot!

And of course, I wouldn’t be anywhere without my readers. To those who have been here since the very beginning, and those who have joined us along the way, I thank each and every one of you for taking the time to come on this journey with me. Without you, I’d be just another unread page on the web.

That really is it I think. I’m sure our paths will cross again in 2013, but until they do let me take this opportunity to wish you all a very Happy New Year. May 2013 be the best year of all our lives!

I’ll leave you now with the final image; a 6×4 retrospective of my year in pictures. Thanks for coming along for the ride, this is where our journey ends…

365/365 - Thanks for coming along for the journey!

“Photography is a way of feeling, of touching, of loving. What you have captured on film is captured forever, it remembers little things long after you have forgotten everything.”
– Aaron Siskind

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