‘Today is all about’ photo project…10 years on

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10 years ago, I set myself a goal to take a picture every day for a year, Little did I know, a decade later the ‘Today is all about’ project would still be going strong.

Why I started the project

I started the project a decade ago to give me a break from the trials and tribulations of life. I had just started my degree, and was about to go on a new career path. And with that, a lot of my other goals were related to reducing stress and achieving good grades.

I wanted to do a photo project, which had some meaning to the photos. Well at least to me…even if it was just a small moment of time that day.

And after reflecting at the end of the year, I didn’t actually realise how much of a challenge that it was really going to be. Additionally, in the process I had created a photo diary of my life.

While I wasn’t sure I wanted to continue the project, after a small break the ‘Today is all about’ was restarted…and here we are 10 years on!

Key Moments

To mark the 10 year anniversary, I’ve gone through the years and picked out some of the key photos. And why that picture stood out for me.

2011

Newspaper stand
Today is all about…having to deal with some bad news

Sometimes in life, when something happens but you’re just not ready to talk about it, or it isn’t in your place to make it public. However, it’s so important that it has to be documented as a key moment. Not just for the day, but your life.

This is one of those pictures. This photo represents the day I found out that my mum had cancer. When I speak about the project to people, this is the example that I talk about, because of the hidden meaning.

2012

Smashed disco ball
Today is all about…ball dropping

The flat was in the process of getting a well-needed refurb, so I was packing stuff up and dropped one of the disco balls in the bathroom, and it smashed.

This was just a happy accident, but created a beautiful photo, and wished I still had the originals.

2013

Me graduating from university
Today is all about…graduation day

After 4 years of blood, sweat, and tears, 2013 saw me leave university with a 1st class honours degree. Something as a mature student I didn’t think I could achieve.

2014

Husband and I in our kilts for our wedding
Today is all about…a chilled day

The majority of 2014 ‘Today is all about’ photos were in relation to the wedding organising. So only fitting that the key moment from the year would be our wedding day.

2015

A full rainbow over the Manchester skyline
Today is all about…a chilled day

While 2015 had a few key moments, it was this picture that stood out for me. This is one thing that I miss about the flat…is the view. I have took many pictures of the Manchester skyline.

I love this photos, because I can see the growth and change that has happened to the city. I love Manchester, and the pride that I get from the city and the friends I have made through the years.

2016

Gondola and the driver in Venice
Today is all about…gondola ride

Our delayed honeymoon saw us go somewhere we had never travelled to before; Venice. We had such an amazing time, taking in this picturesque place.

2017

Memorial flowers and ballons in St Ann's Square for the victims of the Manchester Arena bombing
Today is all about…a revisit to St Ann’s shows the love in Manchester continues to grow

The Manchester Arena bombing had such a huge impact on myself and the city. Living close by, to hear the bomb detonate, and not know what was going on. The confusion. The shock. The disbelief.

The weeks after, showed how we as a city came together to be there. To help each other to grieve and heal. #BeMoreMartyn

2018

The Husband and I holding hands looking at the Sleeping Beauty castle at Disneyland Paris
Today is all about…Disney adventures continue

I am a huge Disney fan, but I had never been to a Disneyland, until this year. We did hope that we could go Disneyland Orlando for our honeymoon, but it was just too expensive.

So we went to Magical Pride @ Disneyland Paris…and I absolutely love it. While Magical Pride is cancelled for 2021 (Damn you ‘rona), it’s worth giving it a look. Here was my review of the weekend, when Manchester Pride use to run it. Now Disney have taking it over.

2019

Friends in shorts around the pool
Today is all about…a day around the pool with my besties

Friends were integral to 2019, and there are many moments throughout 2019 that I could have selected. This stood out, purely because it was a great holiday.

2020

Baby's hand in an adults hand
Today is all about…family time of the week 🧡

I absolutely adore this pic of my little great-nephew’s hand and mine. To me it just shows love and fragility. Which kind of sums up 2020 to a tee.

Hidden Messages

After 10 years there are many ways that I’ve tried to express things that I don’t always want to talk about, or just to add some fun.

In the past, I have highlighted via the images that I wasn’t emotionally ‘with it’, by having the images appear in black and white.

I’ve also done a series of the images, that used Kylie’s latest album track names as the title of the photo.

A lot of times, you may not notice pics, if you see them as individual items, but together you may see them different. For example, ‘see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil’ that appeared in last month‘s photos.

2020 Hidden Message

As I see the ‘Today is all about’ project part photo diary, I wanted to add an additional layer to 2020’s photos, to capture a level of emotion…so I added coloured hearts to reflect my mood.

A mental health check in chart

I didn’t expect anyone to ‘get it’. It was more of a reflection tool for me in the future. However, because Flickr doesn’t fully support emoticons, a lot of the images are missing the orange heart.

Blog updates

As well as posting the photos daily, I collated the pictures and posted a monthly ‘Today is all about‘ blog.

Originally, the blogs started as just a gallery, but then I started to add a little ditty to introduce the month. These ditties became more structure and detailed.

As time went one, I started to add thoughts that I came across that month. Again, these became more detailed and not always about what the photos captured. Sometimes it was about something personally or what was happening publically.

As these thoughts became more detailed, it was clear that the deserved to have their own blog and referenced into the monthly blog.

I am enjoying writing these blogs because I feel that people are getting a better understanding of who I am personally.

Last year I decided to create a monthly music playlist, again to show a little of my personality.

While I enjoyed making them, I did struggle at times. It took a lot of time to collate, and think of themes.

So the playlists will not be appearing permanently for future blogs. Although, I may add the odd one or two depending on if I have an idea.

The future?

After 10 years, it would be a great time to hang up the towel, but I am still enjoying the project.

I have noticed that the previous years were more selfies, and felt that it lost some of the character a little.

If I’m honest, it became more about the likes, instead of the content. And taking into account last year, where we could do much, what else could you expect.

So for 2021, I want to make sure that the photos are just pictures of me with some non-related title. And I feel that I have started off following that plan.

Don’t get me wrong, my face will appear on photos, but it will be related to the actual photo. So I am trying to get away of posting a selfie, just for the sake of it.

The way that I have posted the daily photo has changed. Currently, I post to Instagram (and share to Twitter), and I shall continue to do so. However, I have now created a new Instagram account for my ‘Today is all about‘ project photos.

I feel that separating it from personal account will rid me of the pressure that I need to post it as a selfie. Occasionally, I shall publicise the post by sharing it as a story.

Going into 2021, I feel like I have gave the project a new lease of life, and I hope you enjoy that too. And continue to follow me on my journey.

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