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the one mile project

At last, the One Mile Project is off the ground. Thankfully I’ve relied on the wisdom of fellow photographer Mark Krajnak to not feel too much pressure about a one year project starting around tax time. For those who are unfamiliar with this project, let me give you a quick rundown.

Last year I took a week long workshop with Freeman Patterson and his photographic partner Andre Gallant. Their motto is that the best place to make a photograph is wherever you are. To prove their point, we were each assigned a spot and could not move from it for an hour. We were allowed to use any lens that we wanted and a 360 degree view. It’s amazing what you can find to photograph when you don’t move an inch. Later in the workshop we were privileged to visit Shamper’s Bluff where Freeman lives on the grounds that he donated to the Nature Conservancy in exchange for life tenancy. It’s an amazing place and photographing there was the highlight of our workshop. Freeman revealed that a large majority of the images he has made were created within one kilometre of his home. That’s the inspiration for my One Mile Project. Now granted I don’t live in a nature heaven like Shamper’s Bluff (more like the set from The Truman Show) and I’ve gone from metric to imperial measurements but the principles remain the same.

This weekend I set out for the first time to photograph for this project. There is a large park a stone’s throw from my home so I walked over there on Saturday afternoon. I discovered that there are some great wood sculptures in the kids playground that reminded me of the images friends have made down in Arizona. For this image I used my 17-35mm but I will return to try my macro lens as well as I did not bring it with me. It is a place where I could stand for one hour and not move at all. For images of the real thing, please head over to my friend Mark Olwick’s website. He just relaunched it last week and has some wonderful images from Arizona. Enjoy!

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17 Comments

  1. Mike Olbinski
    April 26, 2010

    Stunning image Sabrina! Amazing what you can find so close to home, what a great idea.

    I’m from AZ too, may check out Mark’s blog.

    Reply
  2. Andres Bermudez
    April 26, 2010

    After reading about your idea for the one mile project I thought about it for a little while and decided that the same could be done with one’s own home. Being of an artistic bent, photographers are bound to have beautiful things in their own homes. Not just paintings and photographs, but pottery, furniture, pets, spouses, products with great designs and so on. So I’m trying to do the same thing, take a picture or two or three a week of things in my own home and it’s immediate environment (aka the yard) that I find beautiful in their own way. I’m guessing that this will help me appreciate the space I create around myself a little more than I normally do. And if, by looking at this space, really looking at it, I find things I don’t like, I’ll be motivated to change them. To make the space that much more beautiful and my own. Thanks for the inspiration Sabrina.

    Andres

    Reply
    • Sabrina
      April 26, 2010

      That’s very insightful of you, Andres. When I decided on this idea, one of the main factors was that I could technically photograph at home. That meant I had no excuses not to create images. And if you have read some of Freeman’s books, you might recall that some of his favourite images were made in his house during the long winter months.

      Keep us posted on your project!

  3. Ray K
    April 26, 2010

    Outstanding start to this project Sabrina.

    Reply
  4. Mark Olwick
    April 26, 2010

    Thanks for the nice comment on my site, Sabrina.

    This is a great start to your project – you’ve got my gears turning too about some similar ideas. Hmmm 🙂

    Thanks,

    mark

    Reply
  5. Erin Wilson
    April 26, 2010

    An excellent project! Anything that trains the eye to notice detail is a good thing, imho. And I love the image you kicked things off with. The colour is wonderful. If I had shot this image, I would have instantly converted it to b+w, which is why I’m so glad you shot it instead of me 🙂

    Reply
    • Sabrina
      April 26, 2010

      That’s really funny Erin because I did convert it to b+w but decided on the colour version in the end.

  6. Sabrina
    April 26, 2010

    Thanks Mike, Ray and Mark!

    Reply
  7. Krista Fox
    April 27, 2010

    Love this image! The texture and colour are fantastic. As soon as I start my own 1 mile project I’ll share some images with you (after I am able to dig my camera out from all of these expense receipts and tax forms).

    Reply
    • Sabrina
      April 27, 2010

      If you’re anything like me, that camera is a perfect tool for procrastination. I can’t wait to see what you come up in your one mile so get cracking on those taxes 🙂

  8. Chris Klug
    April 27, 2010

    Okay, so I am confused. Are you saying that for one year you’ll only take photographs within one mile of your home? Or that you’ll capture so many images within one mile every week? Sorry, it’s the frequency and volume that have me confused.

    Lovely image, one that I don’t think would work as well in b&w.

    Reply
    • Sabrina
      April 27, 2010

      Sorry about that Chris; I should have explained it a bit better.

      There are no frequency or volume restrictions with this project. It is just limited to the next 12 months. Last year my project was to shoot once a month at the Van Dusen Gardens and I shared one image at the end of each month.

      This year I wanted to do another project but something that was more flexible and yet doable for me. All the photographs for this project will be taken within one mile from my home. I will make other photographs in addition to these so I’m not limiting myself to just this project. That would just be too difficult for me .

      Hope that makes more sense now.

  9. Veggie Belly
    April 28, 2010

    Beautiful photo and a great project!

    Reply
  10. Craig Roberts
    April 28, 2010

    Fantastic idea Sabrina! Wondering if you’ve considered expanding the concept to a community site (ie. Flickr) to encourage other participants?

    (BTW, I’ve heard that Freeman Patterson may be presenting in the Lower Mainland in early January 2011).

    Reply
    • Sabrina
      April 28, 2010

      Hi Craig, nice to see you here.

      I hadn’t thought about opening up this to others but that’s a great idea. Let me think more about it and see what I can come up as I don’t usually use Flickr.

      And yes I had heard that Freeman would be here in January. I hope you’ve signed up for it!

  11. 10 Ways to Break Out of a Creative Slump « Mark Olwick Photography
    May 16, 2010

    […] friend Sabrina Henry has started a One Mile Project that’s very cool. It’s based on the teaching of Freeman Patterson (the great Canadian […]

    Reply
  12. Korwel Photography Blog » Blog Archive » Branch of autumn leaves
    October 20, 2010

    […] trying different angles and distances. Overall, this walk reminded me of Sabrina’s Henry “One mile” project. There seem to be indeed a lot of stuff to photograph in your neighborhood, and you can […]

    Reply

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