365 Project – Week 1

2016-09-04

monika-jia-rui-001

Last Sunday, I started a new project. You might have come across it already – it’s called ‘365 Project’ and it’s about taking a photo every single day for a year. You can do the project about whatever you like; I chose to take self-portraits.

I’ve been uploading the images daily on Facebook, Instagram and Flickr and it’s become some kind of visual diary. Feel free to follow me there, I’d appreciate your support :) I’m planning to post my photos and text here every Sunday as a weekly summary. Hope you enjoy it :)

monika-jia-rui-001
1/365 • new beginnings

One year ago, I had my first portrait shoot. It was just for fun, I had no intentions of becoming a portrait photographer.

I asked an old friend from Singapore whether she’d model for me, warning her that I had no experience and that she’d have to help me out.

The days before the shoot, I spent hours in Singapore’s National Library. A pile of books about portrait photography was on my desk. I tried to remember as much as I could about posing and took breaks savoring the beautiful view of Singapore’s coast from the eleventh floor.

Fast forward one year and I’ve already had some paid shoots as a portrait photographer. This journey has taken me to places I never imagined and I’m incredibly grateful that photography has found me.

Now I’m on the other side of the world, in Uruguay, and I decided to start a 365 project on this special day. I know it’s going to be really challenging, but I’m determined to pull it through.
Can’t wait to see where it will lead me.

monika-jia-rui-002
2/365 • simplicity

Yesterday I went to Montevideo’s most famous market with my love and bought some flowers for my photography – you can expect more flowery photos in the next few days :)

I love to explore how much you can create with just natural light and a simple white wall as a backdrop. There are so many possibilities!

Actually I’d love to create some composite images these days. However, my six years old laptop has been VERY slow lately, making editing a real pain. So I guess more complex photos have to wait till I’ve replaced my loyal companion when I’m back in Switzerland.

monika-jia-rui-003
3/365 • fortunate coincidence

Big news – coincidentally I found a relatively cheap room in a dorm so I don’t have to commute 4hrs every day. I can move in before my classes start (in less than three weeks)!

So happy about the fortunate coincidence. I didn’t expect to find anything while I’m in Uruguay (so I wasn’t really looking) and thought I wouldn’t move until the end of the year.

monika-jia-rui-004
4/365 • love at first sight

Exactly five years ago, crammed in a little school observatory in Uruguay, I set my eyes on his beautiful face for the first time. I still remember it clearly. It was quite dark, but he left me mesmerized.

If love at first sight exists, it happened to me back then. Even though I hardly saw him in the following months and it was mid-November when we first spoke, he never really left my mind (16 years old me crushing hard).

Fast forward two and a half years, the impossible happened and we finally found each other, even with the ocean between us.

Less than two weeks left before I have to leave him again and it’s already breaking my heart.
Click here to read about our beginnings.

(This is my first “double exposure”.)

monika-jia-rui-005
5/365 • hide

On some days all I wanna do is hide and wait till the day is over. My laptop doesn’t work properly, I have technical problems with my blog, suddenly I look hideous or fat on 90% of my photos.. you get the idea.

Luckily the day ended on a positive note. I went shopping with my boyfriend (poor him) to buy some clothes for my photography. Then we shared a pizza while watching Uruguay vs Argentina, had some ice cream and now we’re going to watch an episode of Homeland (do you know this series?) before going to bed. I’m so grateful for those moments together <3

monika-jia-rui-006
6/365 • letting go

Not even a week into this 365 photo project and I realise I can’t continue like that, so today I decided to let go.

I’m a control freak when it comes to portraits. Whether it’s taking a ton of photos till I get the perfect shot or editing a photo for hours – colours, skin, hair, body parts.. I try to make it look as perfect as possible without overdoing it.

So here’s my first rather lightly edited photo. And from tomorrow on, I’ll spend less time hunting for the perfect photo and start embracing the imperfect ones as well.

I have to keep in mind that this is not about creating perfect photos that receive many likes every day, but about challenging myself and do something consequently for a year.

monika-jia-rui-007
7/365 • a little light in the dark

This weekend I was on a little trip with my love and his parents. The destination was a small seaside resort an hour’s ride from Montevideo. I loved it. After staying in the big capital for two months, it was great to be in a small place full of trees for a change.

We stayed in a cozy house with a wonderful garden. A paradise for a photographer. Unfortunately we arrived pretty late, so I decided to shoot my first night photo with a lantern :) not my usual style, but I promised myself to experiment more. Who can spot the remote? ;)

41 Comments
    1. You are very beautiful. I especially love the one with the lantern! Good luck with this! And yes, embrace the ones with “flaws” as well.

      1. Thank you so much for your feedback! I’m surprised you like the one with the lantern most; for me, it’s the one that needs most improvement. Have a lovely week :)

    1. You write so beautifully! And these photos are utterly gorgeous! :))

    1. You look absolutely beautiful and I love seeing how far you’ve come with your photography! :)

      1. Thank you so much, Jana! <3 I'm so sorry I haven't answered your email; I've been so focused on my photography the last couple of months that I've neglected many other things.. anyways, I hope you've had a great summer! Take care x

    1. Breathtaking and the double exposure was mesmerizing. The lantern photo was so beautiful anywhere else it would have been my favourite, but the double exposure; wow.

      1. I’m so happy you like the double exposure! I love it as well :)) it’s really easy to do; if you have a family photo with a simple (white) background and want me to make a double exposure with a forest/a coast out of it, feel free to contact me :) have a lovely week!

      1. Thank you! My photographs generally don’t show it, but I actually laugh and smile a lot :D have a wonderful week <3

          1. “liebster” is German and means something like dearest, beloved, etc.. thank you so much for the nomination! Unfortunately I chose not to participate at the award-thingy but I appreciate it a lot that you thought of me :))

    1. Die Fotos sehen klasse aus. Vor
      allem das mit der Laterne gefällt mir sehr. Ich freue mich schon auf das Jahr voller toller Fotos von dir :)

      1. Danke, liebe Mara! <3 Ich find's echt interessant, dass das so gut ankommt - ich mag das am wenigsten von den sieben :D ich wünsche dir eine wunderschöne letzte Woche in Tunesien! <3

    1. I know nothing about photography, so all I’ll say is that I love your portraits. The first three are gentle, the lighting feels pure, and they’re really pretty. The last two are interesting and unique while capturing a different kind of beauty. Love!

      1. Thank you very much for your kind feedback, Victoria! I’m happy to hear that :) Hope you’ll like my future photos as well :)

    1. Love your writing and photos. The portraits are so pure and pretty, they ha e this thing about them where they make you feel something and that something is beautiful.

      1. I’m glad you like both my writing and photography, thank you! And it means a lot to me that you say that they make you feel something, that’s amazing! Have a lovely weekend and take care x

    1. Your photography is beautiful. I share your love of portraiture, though my medium is drawing and painting rather than photography. I think there is nothing more fascinating than a human face, especially the eyes.

      1. Thank you very much, Gloria! Wow, painting and drawing sounds awesome. I wish I had that talent :D I totally agree – I think the human face and body are very fascinating :)

    1. You are beautiful and you don’t need an editing tool or a new laptop. LOL
      You really capture the emotions in your self portraits, I can’t wait to see all 365.
      Such talent. :-)

      1. Thank you very much! haha, I definitely need a new laptop since I need editing programs for my studies. I’m already known as the one with the super old and slow laptop :P enjoy your weekend! <3

      1. haha thank you, but if you knew how I looked without editing.. ;) also, I really need a new laptop for my studies because my current one is close to breaking down. I’m glad you see emotions in my self-portraits and I hope you’ll like my project :) take care! x

    1. I’m looking forward to following your 365 project! Your photos have such a lovely peacefulness to them, and I like the captions :)

      1. I’m glad to hear that, thank you for your kind feedback! Please don’t expect super awesome photos haha sometimes I’m totally stressed or tired :o

    1. I have been reading your blog for the last thirty minutes and completely loving all your amazing photos!! How I wish I could take photos like that! well I guess, it’s really up to me if I want to learn though. Haha! And you’re so beautiful! Wishing you (an advance) happy new year and more stunning photos in the future. :)

      1. oh wow, thank you so much for your lovely comment! <3 it's really not that hard - I still have A LOT to improve, but the most important thing is to get started with a simple camera and try try try :) happy new year to you too! xx

        1. Thanks! You’re right. :) My uncle lets me use his Nikon D5000. But I am not really paying much attention to learn its “magic”. Thank you for the advice!

Let me know what you think!

%d bloggers like this: