idiot.with.camera began with a black eye, accidentally received from the elbow of media personality Andrew Günsberg during an Amazing Race-style competition being hosted by Canon. While Andrew is better known for his work on television, he is also an avid photographer; and in return for his presence, Canon promoted Andrew’s photo gallery display. The subject: one self portrait a day for a year.
The project was not an act of narcissism or gross self-indulgence. Run-of-the-mill 365-day photo projects are difficult enough to pull off as they are, but coming up with a different self-portrait every day is incredibly challenging. And there was a certain truth and creativity behind it that I admired – like the portrait he took of himself mere hours after losing the Australian Idol gig.
My team ended up winning the competition and the prize was a Canon 60D with a nice 15-85 USM lens, but I like to think that I came away with more. I’ve now been taking a self portrait a day every day since January 1, 2011. I’d like to show something different every day, although that’s not my specific aim. This is part diary, part social commentary, part photographic trickery; and I’m doing it all purely for fun.
As for that black eye, Andrew stopped several times in the day to ask if I was okay. He mentioned that he wasn’t insured, and that he didn’t want to be sued.
May 2015: After doing the daily self portrait thing for more than four years, I’ve decided that a change of pace is in order. In addition to self-portraits, I’ll be posting photos of everything else in my photographic world – the people I encounter, the things I get to see and do – on a much less demanding schedule. Right now I’m aiming for one or two posts a week. Maybe it’ll be more. Who knows? All I know is that a post a day, every day, 365 days a year just isn’t really feasible for me anymore.
January 2016: Well, I’ve decided to restart my daily self-portraits afresh. I realised I was doing things for all the wrong reasons, fretting over stupid things; tying my brain into a pretzel over nothing. So I’m going to take a page from my Wing Chun training and not overthink things. Just do it. If what I end up publishing sucks? Then I’ll learn from it and move on.