December is the first month since March when I haven’t HAD to get my camera out. Entering that stretch of the year where there are no family sessions and no weddings on the horizon. And, as a lot of you fellow photographers know, after months spent constantly wielding it at every opportunity, it’s nice for you and your camera to have a short-term separation, isn’t it? In the words of Ross Gellar, for the past few weeks, my camera and I? WE WERE ON A BREAK. But Saturday came and, Saturday here in much of Indiana meant the first significant snowfall of the season. It was GORGEOUS out and I found myself wanting to get outside and document it for my own sake.
I will join most other Hoosiers in acknowledging that, come March, I hate the snow and cold. With a passion. But during the month of December, it’s a love affair. I love having no place I HAVE to be. Being able to curl up under a blanket with a cup of coffee on a Saturday morning and just watch it come down. It’s peaceful and beautiful and it reminds me of what I find magical about this time of year.
With this being my December self-portrait, I thought it was a good time to reflect on the other 11 self-portraits I captured in 2010. When I first set out to do this project, I felt a bit foolish. Like, HELLO NARCISSISM. And I know some of you may still feel that way. But a few months in, I found myself looking forward to how I was going to visually tell the story of that coming month. It was an opportunity for me to flex my creative muscle (even if it meant turning the camera on myself), and it was kind of fun to stage these shots–trying to lock a focus (harder said than done when you’re not IN the photo first), getting that self-timer going, being ready before it fired.
And as I was compiling these images, I realized they tell a story. They make me happy to look at them all because, with each one, I remember exactly what I was doing and thinking and feeling in that moment I created the image. I’ve decided I’m going to keep this project up. Indefinitely, if at all possible. And along the way, I want to capture them permanently, perhaps (in a few more years), in a book of some form. I want to do this so that some day, my children have a sneak peek at the life I lead before they hopefully come along. And I want them to know that I got in front of the camera every now and then too. That I’m not always behind it … which, a lot of the time, is how I feel. But looking at these photos helps me remember that doesn’t always have to be true.
If you’ve missed any of these by the month, I compiled a list for you to peek at! And if you’re thinking about embarking on your own self-portrait project in 2011, let me know in the comments and feel free to link to them in the coming year. I’d LOVE to know someone else is doing this with me too!
(From left to right, top to bottom):
01.10 JANUARY: Where It All Starts / 02.10 FEBRUARY: Reflections on a Birthday/ 03.10 MARCH: How Cooking Calms Me Down/ 04.10 APRIL: Visiting Times Square (101 in 1001 goal)/ 05.10 MAY: P90(e)X(hausted)/ 06.10 JUNE: Hanging the Hammock (101 in 1001 goal)/ 07.10 JULY: Our Balcony in Paris/ 08.10 AUGUST: The Summer of the Bun/ 09.10 SEPTEMBER: “If Life Were a Sweater, I Would Wear It Everyday”/ 10.10 OCTOBER: Roadtrippin’ It/ 11.10 NOVEMBER: Notes from the Tub/ 12.10 DECEMBER: Let’s End It With Snow!