The four things that I have learned from #my18in18 experience

The four things that I have learned from #my18in18 experience

Roll back twelve months and so the 3×3 grids started to appear across social media. Sharing a persons best nine photos of the year is commonplace. As the helpful Mum and Oldham photographer for families who want to preserve memories before they fade, there’s nothing more satisfying than seeing photos illustrate the finest stories of a person’s year. However last year, it struck me.  Most grids created by females, on the whole, had one type of photo missing. Photos of themselves. Just them. No one else, just them.   Time for #my18in18.

Inspired By Joseph photographer inspires Mum's to get in more photos

Last year, I blogged about my Mum Story. I talked about how I want to empower Mums to take personal responsibility for realising the benefits of being in more photos . It bugs me that most Mum’s don’t get in enough photos and I am on a mission to stop this for the sake of our children. And it shouldn’t be up to the Dads either, don’t get me started!  That’s why I decided to take 18 photos of me just being me, so that I could pick the best 50% to go in my won grid!

Reflectively, as I sit and wrote this blog, I wonder, as usual, where the year has gone?  Yes the early 2018 photos do feel like ages ago but three quarters of the year feel like yesterday.  Importantly, I wanted to share my learning’s from this experience so here goes….

1.  In some ways, it was easier than I imagined

Having publically committed to the challenge meant that I would have half an eye on #my18in18.  I didn’t let the side down.  However, there were times in the year when I seemed to over index on photos and then go a month without taking one.

2.  I wasn’t as creative as I would have liked

Ironically, given that I am a photographer, I don’t like photos of myself!  At times, I imagine that I was more focused on reaching the target than the creativity surrounding it.  The majority of photos are selfies that I just managed to catch on the fly.  Coupled with a lack of time though, I shouldn’t complain!  The two things that I will take from this learning are:

  • I can find the time to be more creative. Bringing out the selfie stick more is a must.  I want to get into the habit of using a timer and a tripod on my ‘proper’ camera too.  Whilst this feels time consuming, I need to push out of my comfort zone and get creative!
  • It’s about quality not quantity. On reflection, if I would have set myself a target of nine, I may have been able to be more creative by giving myself more time.  You have to try these things though heh?

3.  How can I work to make this easier for other Mums to do?

I had some fantastic response from Mum’s, with a super large shout out to Jenny , Bert and Natalie in particular for their efforts!  I REALLY want to see more Mum’s increase confidence in front of the camera instead of being behind!  My enthusiasm and passion for this is at the heartbeat of my business – I feel it is part of my job to make this happen.  However, I also have to remember that all I can do is try to educate and  inspire.  It is up to us all as individuals to take action on the things that matter to us so I have to remember that this isn’t for everyone.  Reflecting, I wonder if I could have done things differently.  Was 18 photos too many?  Is it that Mum’s don’t want to post online?  I’d love your feedback so please do get in contact if you can help.

4.  It’s been an amazing year and it’s important to look back and celebrate!

Personally, photos are the backbone of my diary.   Photos are the quickest and easiest way to reflect on life, the good, the bad and the ugly!  Yes, my glass is always overflowing (it’s never half full and empty isn’t in my vocabulary!) so my photos will always reflect this and that is what makes me happy!  This year my business reached new heights, I got to travel to some amazing places and I continue to live the life that I want to lead, however tough that can sometimes be.  Given that, it’s probably time to share my grid, don’t you agree?


If I can help you update your family photos, get in touch.

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