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5 ways photo-a-day will change your life for the better

Fat Mum Slim /

There’s something about this photo a day thing, isn’t there? I have people asking me all the time, “Do you understand how big this is?” I don’t really. I get dozens of emails every day about it, how it’s changing people’s lives and how much they love it. I get comments on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and here too, saying thank you and that people love it. There’s something about it that people love, that I love. It’s hard to fathom just how big it is, when it’s not physically right in front of me. I can see the sharing, but to make it real I try and imagine if I’d invited everyone that’s participating over to my house for brunch. That’d be one full house. Then it seems real.

It’s changed my life for the better, over these past 6 months. Here’s how it can change yours too:

1. It makes your stop and smell the roses. Or take photos of them
Photo a day makes you take a moment each day to stop, think and shoot. There were a few days earlier this year that I was doing it tough. Work was really stressful, things were happening with my health, we weren’t sure where we were going to live, it was just general stressful ‘stuff’. To stop each day and take a moment to be explore and take a photo was a real blessing. It’s great to give yourself even just that small amount of time each day to play.

2. It makes you explore your creative side
I’m a creative person, so much that it sometimes drives me a bit batty – I flit from one project to another and my brain never stops being inspired. I’ll try anything creative; painting, drawing but photo a day is simple. It doesn’t cost anything {other than the cost of the camera and your internet connection} and doesn’t make a mess. For some it might be the first time they’ve paid attention to their creative needs since painting in school. It’s a good thing!

3. It makes people come together as a community
I see friendships forming everywhere around photo a day. They’re blossoming on my Facebook page, people are forming their own private groups for sharing and others are connecting on Instagram. Last night I saw that a virtual party was being organised to celebrate the end of #photoadayjune by some lovely bloggers. I’ve made friends too. It’s a great way to connect with other people from all around the glove, around something positive and fun.

4. It makes you see beauty in the everyday
I’ve started to see photo opportunities in things that I use to walk by everyday and not really take any notice of. Things like the perfect brick wall, a garden, signs, shops, etc. It’s made me realise just how beautiful the every day can be. Once you start shooting away, you’ll soon do the same!

5. It makes the world a smaller place

Last night I took a photo of the floor at a local ice cream shop. The comments came in after I shared it on Instagram. A few people lived near it, others had visited previously and one girl even worked there. It’s a small, small world. Earlier this month I flew to North Queensland for a holiday, and on my flight back home I sat next to Pip. It changed my life that moment and I wrote about it here. The next day the pilot from my flight commented on my photo on Facebook to say sorry for the turbulence, that she was flying my plane and that she took a similar photo a day too, from up in the air. Isn’t that crazy? My pilot on that flight plays photo a day? I love those moments.

The photo above is from that trip back with Pip and is my favourite photo of the month. If you played along in June and have a favourite picture, I’d love to see it. Either leave a link to it in the comments below, or share it on my Facebook page’s wall or go back to it in Instagram and tag it with #favephotojune in the comments. Alternatively, blog it, tweet it, pin it or whatever you want to do with it!

Do you play photo-a-day? Does it make your days a little bit better too?

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  • I’m SO glad that I started doing photo-a-day this past June. It really has made each day a little better 🙂

  • It’s a lot of fun! Thanks. 🙂

  • Bre

    I started in April and LOVE it. I even got my boyfriend to do it for this month and it’s funny when we wake up and discuss what the topic of the day is. I like to search for the hashtag and see what other people are doing for the day. And I love when I get random likes from other Photo A Dayers.

  • I stumbled upon photo a day this month and have loved it! My kids are even excited about it and give me suggestions on what to photograph. I also got two of my friends participating who are amazing photographers (I just wanted to see what they would come up with). I plan to continue for as long as you post a list. 🙂 Thank you for inspiring us.

  • Yes, I just started doing photo a day this month and though I’ve been having a hard time remembering to take photos everyday when I actually do it’s really amazing and great! Thanks for making this challenge! 🙂

  • Love love the photoaday challenge. It does make you stop and think. Thank you for creating something so unique and special.
    Vicki xx

  • Alicia

    I started in February and it was hard to remember to take a picture. But now its just part of me!! . i have always loved taking pictures but this makes me look at my surroundings more creatively! Thank you so much!!

  • Bec R

    I have only just started last month but the one thing I have liked the most is that I have my camera out and about every day so I am finding I am taking more photos of everything – including the kids 🙂

  • I really want to start A Photo A Day July! I’m pumping myself up for it! I’ve tried before but I was never able to keep up with it all. Now that Instagram is on Android it makes my life a whole lot easier! 😀

  • I’ve been doing this awesome challenge since April. In mid-March, my 1 year old son was gravely ill and in hospital, having just endured a week of chemotherapy and about to receive a bone marrow transplant when I came across this challenge. To keep my mind off things, I made a promise to myself to try the challenge. I have loved every day of this challenge so far, and my little man has been such a willing model for so many of my photos. It’s been great not only to take a new photo every day, but also to see my brave little man recover from his life saving treatment and continue to go from strength to strength. Thank you, Chantelle, for giving me one more fun thing to do every day.

  • Dee

    I love photoaday my friend introduced me to it halfway through last month so June has been my first full month and it has been so much fun and your right it really does make you stop and think and explore a little bit of the creative part of you that sometimes gets forgotten in the everyday dramas that are life. Thank you for your inspiration and allowing us a glimpse into your life through your blog

  • Caitlin

    I LOVE PHOTO A DAY!!!!  i was wondering what gave you the idea to start/create it?


  • Hi
    I joined photoaday as a new blogger and it’s been a really great way for me to focus on the many positive and beautiful everyday things that I might not normally stop and notice. My favourite was ‘Time’ which I was really struggling with until my daughter arrived home that afternoon from school with a slightly shell-shocked lorrikeet on her shoulder and it became ‘time to get a new pet?’
    Thank you!

  • Leesa

    Thanks Chantelle for starting the photo a day. I love it and so do many of my friends. I have connected with so many wonderful people on Instagram because of photo a day! It is a wonderful thing you have done. Thank you!!

  • Vikki

    Ummmm i’m a little concerned that YOUR PILOT was taking PHOTO’S……please just PRETEND to be holding the steering wheel!
    I have seen soooo many beautiful photo’s that others have taken, it really inspires me and have formed some new friendships with others that i would never have had the opportunity to meet, this is SUCH a huge thing (i’ve noticed ALOT of American’s participate, but it takes a Aussie invention, YOUR INVENTION to bring everyone together)
    Congratulations, i’m so glad to be a part of it. xxx

  • I love it!! I’ve started in June, now going on .. July is almost here!!!Thank you for the inspiration!!!!!

  • I work with numbers all day ( not very creative) , when a friend introduced me I was hooked . Love the concept, Enjoy trying to be creative & love the different apps in photography!

  • Fionna Marshall

    My fav photo was Day 16 – Out and about. I looked up at the sunset and a heart looked back at me.

  • I saw Januarys list on a friends FB page, and been doing it everyday since. Thanks Chantelle. I liked the stranger one, that was challenging in a secret squirrel kinda way! I blogged my favourite photos from the past 6 months 🙂

  • Snooky

    Hi. I’ve been doing this for two months. And I enjoy every moment of it. What better way to explore and improve my creative side. Since its summer (I live in the UK) I’ve also been doing “my days of summer” on shuttercal.
    My favourite photo for June is this one
    I took a photo of this flower from our garden and the idea just came together. (Although I forgot to put the hour/minute hands)…
    Great job. Reading the comments above, you have let the creative juice flowing in all of us.

  • Tasha

    What a wonderful idea… Now the end of June so I will be joining in for July.
    I suffer from ‘head full of creative stuff but don’t know where to start” so this my be my 1st step to achieving a small goal a day.
    Once I start who knows where I will end….

  • Suz

    I love it! I usually abandon photo-a-day projects about three days in, but I find the prompts really help me keep on track. I post all my photos at the end, and I love looking back and seeing the whole month laid out on one page. I also love seeing other people’s interpretations & having a little peek into different worlds. So, thank you! 🙂

    p.s. the new blog looks great!

    • fatmumslim

      Thanks Suz! x

  • Photographer Mum

    I did it for a month earlier in the year and haven’t really done it since (you’d think I would, given that I am a photographer…). I loved taking photos of random things and finding the beauty in them. I think I’ll join in again for July. I also love looking at other people’s photos too. Very inspirational 🙂

  • bonjour
    i am just finishing my first photo month and i’ve loved it! i think it will be such a lovely thing to look back on in 40 years…to see where i lived and what i did (especially as i’m a bit faddy with diaries/journals.) i put them up on my blog every few days and even though nobody looks at it, i love having my little record of ME out there and immortalised. so THANK YOU very much :o)
    and here is the photo i’m proudest of this month:
    love love
    x H x

  • Melissa

    Guess what I am going to give it a try! Thankyou, you have given me something to look foreward to, when life gets a bit hard:-)

  • Michelle D

    Still haven’t missed a day since January. LOVE it. So addicted my husband now calls me. Tourist when I start snapping.

  • You may have answered this before, but what prompted you to start photo a day?

  • I got an iPhone in December, started doing your challenges in January & haven’t missed a day since. Thank you so much for helping me put a bit of creativity into everyday things.

  • Karen Paolini

    Starting July 1st!!

  • I am loving photo-a-day! I think my fave of June has to be Close Up:
    Hope that long ass link works!

  • Karen

    I am going to try this! It sounds like fun!

  • This is my favorite picture I have ever taken. It is at the baseball field in the movie, Field of Dreams in Iowa. I also do a monthly roundup of #photoaday pictures. #photoadayJune is here on my other blog: Thank you for taking a look if you have a chance! I have really enjoyed participating in #photoaday!

  • My Boyfriend & I have become closer because of Photo A Day!! he helps me with some of the subjects and gives me ideas and stuff, its great, every day he asks me “whats your photo a day, today??” hehe i love it… and i LOVE this photo a day challenges… ever since i started i have noticed more things, and also started taking photos of more random things… like for instance, i was at work (im a pizza delivery driver) and i took a photo of a railway crossing sign, as i was sitting there waiting for the train to go past and let me through the gates, just so i could post it on instagram.. haha… i will admit i havent made any new friends over this photo a day challenge thing tho, but ya never know, it could happen 😉 and i hope it does… 🙂 coz im defo a people person!!! 🙂 love ur work Chantelle <3

    this is my page if anyone wants to follow my photoaday photos –
    and this is my instagram name if u wanna follow it on there – Rockstar_Tash (Tash Horn)

  • I started the photo-a-day challenge since January 2012 for another site. Then in April I started doing your challenge. I stopped in May & June because work is so hectic I end up completely drained. Now that can breathe again, I hope to start clicking once more.
    1) The lists give me a guide of what to shoot daily and it really helps me to improve my skills, technique and creativity.
    2) Yes, I learn to see things around me from a different perspective everyday. At one time I took pics of the sky for 4 days straight and everyday is different.
    3) My daughter sometimes help me with ideas and in a way, we help one another and become very close.
    4) Now, I have more photos to scrap and I have also learnt to focus on the subject that will work best around my layouts. Thus, minimize on wasted photos that are not scrappable.
    Finally, I have lots of fun looking back at all the photos I’ve taken. At the moment i have not made any new friends; as my work progresses, so too will the friendship.
    Thank you Chantelle.


  • Thanks for your lists every month! July is going to be my third month to play along and I love having a list of prompts for the whole month to do something with. I love having something random that I need to turn into a photo, it does really make you think about the world around you. My favorite photo of July is this one:

  • June was my first month doing Photo a Day and I had so much fun that I’m doing it again. My favorite photo is June 8, my friend Zoe at our Friday Knitting Night. Here’s my Pinterest board with all my June photos. Thanks, Chantelle, for a great idea.

  • i do photo a day everyday. I’m so glad i found the first photo list back in the end of last year. I cannot wait to look back on a whole years worth of photos and memories. I’m quite creative and tend to flit form one thing to the next but i have managed to stick to doing the photo a day challenges pretty well. I love seeing other peoples interpretations of the prompts. It’s good to see the lists through lots of different people’s eyes. Very inspiring too. Thank you again for this awesome project. And great new blog design. Like it!

  • Well, i agree with you that we have to photo every moments in our life so we keep on remember that all the time..

    Can you give us tutorial how to take a nice photo?