Project 1 - 39 Self Portraits
Once the idea of the Year of 39 project came into my mind, I had to reconcile what the project would become.
What was I going to accomplish?
What did I want to create?
What new things did I want to try?
I quickly had a list that was gigantic. But, was it feasible?
My ultimate goal? Lay down a road map that I was capable of finishing. Lord knows, there is nothing more depressing for creatives than starting a project and never finishing.
Where to begin?
Since the beginning of the year I have been in bi-weekly sessions with a Career Coach. She reminds me often that when I find myself in paralyzation and self-doubt, the theme that I need to return to is:
"What is the obvious answer?"
In my past, I had countless internal debates with myself over the merit of my ideas because I had this notion that my contributions had to be unique. "Well everyone has already thought of that", I would say to myself. Her extremely important question back at me was, "But what if they haven't thought of the obvious?"
Therefore, on my first day of being 39, I am starting my first project: 39 self portraits.
Why? Because I'm a photographer, and what do photographers do? They take self portraits.
How will this project progress?
Over the next year, you can return to this post and I will post my self-portraits as I take them. With each I will post a supplemental paragraph with commentary of what was going through my creative mind that day because I have come to discover that no one knows what is running through my head, except me.
Portrait #1 - "Let's Begin" - April 16, 2021
I have feared this project - for so many reasons. Lifelong issues of body dysmorphia and a lack of confidence kept me from trying. I have hundreds of thousands of photos of so many people. But, I have very few of me that weren't heavily altered to morph into a perfect perception. It has been easier for me to see everyone but myself. Thus, with a heavy amount of apprehension, I knew I had to begin. I worked to simply find a place of comfort and to force my brain not to worry about the background or my look. I didn't try, I kept it obvious, and took a photo of who I was on this day: My first day of 39.