Image shot with Minolta MC W.Rokkor-HG 35mm f2.8 and processed with Vintage Film Lightroom presets
Welcome to the 6th update of the #leesixtyfive project.
It’s great that you’re here. Great for a couple of reasons. The first is simply that you’re here, reading what I’m writing.
If you’re reading, it means I must still be writing. And if I’m still writing, it means the project isn’t dead, which is the second reason I think it’s great that you’re here.
Not for the first time, though, this update is overdue. In more ways than one. However, that’s actually good news.
Come see why as I present photographs 151 – 180 of the #leesixtyfive project.
What gets measured gets improved
In the 121 – 150 update, I talked about how I was behind schedule with this whole thing.
I didn’t know at the time exactly how far behind I was, which is obviously not a good situation to be in. When you’re making 365 photographs in 365 days, reaching day 364 and finding you have a tonne still to do would be a disaster.
Especially if it’s raining.
So, with a nod to the Peter Drucker quote ‘what gets measured gets improved’, I decided to find out exactly where we stand.
The figures made me feel both good and bad.
I was surprised at how far behind I was. In the beginning, this was supposed to be a genuine one-photograph-a-day project rather than just having an average of one per day over the year. I’ll admit there was a touch of disappointment with how far I’ve fallen behind that original idea.
However, there’s absolutely no point focusing on the number of days that have passed.
So I looked forward instead, at how many days are left, and how many photographs I have to make in them. And those numbers didn’t seem so bad. Obviously the average is more than one a day, but it’s not insurmountable.
At the time of writing, I’m on day 285 and have shot 208 photographs. Looked at from the other direction, that means I have 80 days left to make 157 photographs. Two a day. Again, not insurmountable.
It also means I’m two photographs away from being able to write the 181 – 210 update.
That’s why when I said this one is overdue in more ways than one, it’s not necessarily a bad thing. Because you can get the next update sooner than usual, and I’m not as far behind with this as it may appear. 😀
My new favourite lens?
In update 91 – 120, I talked about using a new (to me) vintage lens in this project – the Konica Hexanon 50mm f1.7.
Since then, I’ve been using another new (to me) vintage lens – the Minolta Rokkor 35mm f2.8. I’ve had it for a few months now and I’m pretty sure it’s becoming my new favourite.
Previous to that, if pushed, I’d probably have said the F.Zuiko 38mm f1.8 was my first choice. But actions speak louder, and the vast majority of photographs made for this project recently have been done so with the Minolta.
The 38mm F.Zuiko has the advantage of being smaller on the camera, but I think I prefer the 35mm Minolta for everything else.
Some things, like image quality, are there for all to see. However, it’s hard to really make you understand the satisfaction I get when shooting it.
This satisfaction might be because of that image quality, and seeing it on the screen as I shoot. It might be because of the build quality making the focus and aperture rings effortless to use.
It might even be because of the size, which I just mentioned as a disadvantage, being a good thing as it feels nice and meaty in your hands.
It’s most likely a combination of all of the above. All I know for sure is shooting with it is very fulfilling.
I had thought the majority of the photographs in the #leesixtyfive project would be made with the F.Zuiko. Now I think the Minolta will be at least alongside it in terms of number of images in the project.
Follow one course until successful
Earlier in this update I spoke about how, despite falling behind the original one-per-day schedule, completing this project is still physically highly possible.
However, that doesn’t take into account desire, behaviour, and the danger of getting distracted.
If you’re working on a project of any worth, a year isn’t really that long in the grand scheme of things; especially if you look at it in the context of your whole life.
However, when you’re living that year, it can – and probably will – feel like a long time to be concentrating on one thing.
Of course, concentrating on one thing is better than concentrating on nothing, or too many things, but it can still be tough.
Shiny object syndrome is real.
I bought a Yashica Electro 35mm film camera recently (an actual shiny object) and have been itching to get some rolls shot, developed, and published on here. So much so that I wondered whether I should stop this project – even briefly – and do that instead.
And of course I shouldn’t. Any time spent out shooting has to be for this until it’s finished.
At the time of writing, I’m over 200 photographs into this. If I quit now, I’m not sure I’d ever try to do it again. Knowing I was starting over having thrown away 200 photographs would probably be too much for me to deal with.
The film photography can wait. Until the 365 days are over, this project has to be the priority. I have to focus on it.
Focus, according to Rich Dad Poor Dad author Robert Kiyosaki, stands for ‘follow one course until successful’.
Having come so far already, that has to be the mantra until the end.
The next chapter of the #leesixtyfive project
As I mentioned earlier, at the time of writing this #leesixtyfiveproject chapter, I’ve pretty much shot all the photographs needed for the next one too.
I do still need to upload them to Instagram, though.
What I also need to do is continue shooting for the chapter after that, and every one after that too.
I now have a calendar on my wall counting the days to the end of this thing. I write the number of every photograph next to the number of the day they get uploaded to Instagram.
Right now, of course, they don’t match.
The goal is to ensure that, by the final day, they do.