Are Photography Projects and Challenges Useful?

As we bring in the new year, a lot of casual photographers make a New Year’s Resolution to get out there and take more photos. Some ways that photographers do this is by selecting a ‘photography project’ to focus and motivate them while giving them new ideas on subjects and techniques. This can be quite a good idea, but with so many out there, it can be quite a challenge to find the one that is the best fit.

Project 365

Project 365 is probably the photography project that you have heard and seen most about, with the hashtag #project365. There is no other prerequisite, to take a new image every day. Sounds easy? I tried it a couple of years ago (start of 2016) and man was it tough! I think to get the content fresh; I work in the same office each day, I take the same train, the same walk etc… (I am a creature of habit!), so trying to stay interesting was a big challenge. It was just too much of a commitment for me. So if you do fancy this challenge, be prepared!

Project 52

This weekly challenge is a bit more user-friendly, especially if you are someone like me who can only get out in the world on the weekend for photography. There are such great ideas out there, including sub-genres of photography, with a 52-week landscape photography challenge, 52 weeks walk photography challenge etc. It’s a good challenge to start with, as it is less commitment but still giving you lots of ideas to try

100 Strangers

This challenge is one of the most daunting and difficult for me. My street photography skills are quite basic, as I don’t quite feel comfortable with photographing strangers and do not have the self-confidence to speak to these people. The challenge is exactly what it says, take 100 portraits of 100 strangers. This would push me WELL outside of my comfort zone, filling me with dread and anxiety. So if you are looking for a challenge, this one is for you! I am hoping to start this soon, as I want to start to on my portraiture. Watch this space!

Typography / A-Z Photo Challenge

The A-Z challenge has no time constraints, but it can be quite challenging. The idea is to find the shape of letters in nature, whether it is a letter B in the arches above a window, a letter S in a swing chain, a letter I as a daisy. The possibilities are endless and require quite a low level of commitment, all the while looking deeper into the daily world around you.

Photo A Day / 30 Day Challenges

You can find many 30 day challenges on Pinterest, where every day the subject or technique of the image is listed and you are challenged to capture. This can help if you are stuck in a bit of a rut or end up photographing the same thing. If you are dedicated on completing this every day, it does require quite a bit of dedication, but you can always be a bit flexible if you wish.

Lay Flat Challenge

I am sure that you have seen loads of stunning Instagram posts where everything has been laid flat and correctly positioning. If you are trying to boost your Instagram following or for blogging, it can be quite a useful technique to have. Again, 30 straight days can be quite labour intensive, but you could amend it for your next 30 Instagram posts or future 30 blog posts.

Photography Bucket List

The big one! This is your photography wish list, all those skills you want to master, the scenes you want to capture, the goals you want to achieve. This means writing down your dream list and starting to achieve these. There is no time limit on these. However, they can be quite expensive (Photographing the northern lights for example). This is an ongoing project and evolves with you as a photographer and something to work and strive towards.



Any photography project can be a bit time commitment, chose your plan on your terms, set your expectations, set your own time and don’t be too hard on yourself if your circumstances change. Check out our Pinterest boards (here) with some ideas and follow the board for more updates

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