200 / by Zack Wussow

On my birthday this January, I decided to do a photo-a-day project. It's not my first (I actually completed one in 2011) but it seemed like a good way to make some work through the winter doldrums and to experiment with some new things. On August 2nd, I hit 200 days!

Our cat doesn't look sinister at all... I don't know what you mean...

Our cat doesn't look sinister at all... I don't know what you mean...

Some, like the above, have been taken while experimenting with my primary work camera, but not many - the 5D is big, heavy, and most importantly, expensive. So I like to leave it where it's safe most of the time.

Instead, I took the approach that the best camera is the one that is always with you, and bought a Canon S110. I've previously owned two S90s (and broke both of them), and love this one as much as I loved those. They're small, light, and extremely capable. Best of all, with a little reshuffling and a wallet downsizing, the S110 fits in my pants pocket. I literally carry it everywhere.

I'm so glad I do, because there are so many photo opportunities that I would miss out on if I had to rely on my cell phone. (It tries, admirably, but it can only do so much...) 

It's been so much fun. I love breaking it out to catch sudden moments (so many sunsets, as well), and it's cheap enough that I am willing to take it places it might get damaged.

Like in a kayak.

Like in a kayak.

It's also been a great motivator to experiment with new things, try out new angles or new techniques that have subsequently made it into my professional work. The project (and the surprisingly good macro system on the S110) prompted me to add a macro tube for my professional gear, which in turn provided a few days worth on photos as I systematically photographed every tiny thing in our apartment. Now I'll be adding shots like the one below to all my future weddings.

But the best part, by far, has been all the photos I love, photos of loved ones or special occasions, that I probably wouldn't have bothered to take if not for the looming daily deadline motivating me to get my camera out and just try it. See what... happens.

You can see all 200 (and counting) in my Flickr gallery. At this point, I doubt it will be a year-long project. Rather, I'm planning just to make it a part of daily life indefinitely.

I recommend it, even if you just use your cell phone. Even if you aren't the best photographer. It's like a quick, daily journal entry that will make you look more carefully at your world.