My Year With a GoPro : 365 Timelapse to Sum Up 2013
At the beginning of 2012, I bought a GoPro Hero 2. I was very excited but a year went by and my GoPro Hero2 spent most of the time turned off because I somehow associated it with amazing footage of athletes doing extreme sports, which I enjoy watching but don’t practice myself. So, on December 31st, 2012, I took the decision to take a timelapse a day with my GoPro, from January 1st 2013 until December 31st, 2013.
I chose to use timelapses because I feel very strong about Time as a theme, and I liked the idea of making a video about time passing that was made of ‘compressed’ sequences.
What I Learned…
To put it plain and simple I learned:
- TO LET GO
I never considered myself a perfectionist, I don’t even believe in perfectionism, but there is always a standard you set for yourself, even though this standard might not be motivated by the right reasons and you shouldn’t reach it. Pretty early on I had to accept that this side-project will have flaws, that it was ok, and that what I needed from it to come out of it wasn’t necessarily what I hoped when I started.
- TO LOOK
Even though I traveled a lot this year, there were entire weeks where I would just work, take public transportation and go to yoga, and if sometimes I felt like I was doing the same timelapse over and over again, I also learned to find new ways to place my GoPro and to become excited by situations I would have overlooked at before. I learned to scan and assess quickly if I could place my GoPro in an interesting place long enough to take pictures, and I also became kind of a cloud specialist. I stopped watching movies in plane and just stared by the window.
- TO STOP
It is one thing to film few seconds of video and to edit them, it is an entire other thing to shoot pictures and stay still for a long time. People have thrown me some weird looks this year (try to stay still in the middle of Grand Bazaar in Istanbul, Turkey, and you will get what I mean). This project taught me to stop, literally, and made me realized how little I stopped and stayed still before, and how important it is.
- TO GO FOR IT
I have a thing with intrusive people so I am always self-conscious about that, and I hate being in front of a camera as much as I love being behind it. I honestly thought I could make 365 timelapses without being a single-time in one of them. By the third week in the project, I had to review my opinion. I also learned to just place my camera, staying respectful and not showing people in compromising situation, and do what I needed to do to have an interesting angle or a different take. I’ve been told you can see the evolution in the video as angles varies more often.
- TO OVERCOME FEAR
I have plenty of fears and one of them is exposing myself. And yet, I made a video that is pretty much about exposing my life. Part of me wants everybody to ignore this video and part of me wants people to watch it. Putting the video online and writing an article about it proved to be difficult but I did it and consider it a win on fear.
To Sum It Up…
- 1 GoPro Hero 2: this little machine was turned on every day for 365 days, sometimes for hours, it travelled thousands of kilometers in a purse and I was not always kind to it. Despite my nightmares in the project’s last 15 days that it will die or be stolen, it delivered.
- 20 Planes: I knew I was going to travel a lot during 2013, but I cranked even more travels than anticipated because of this project. Shots in the sky were some of my favorites moments.
- 504 timelapses: some days were filled with possibilities. Unfortunately, since I could only have one timelapse a day, I ended up with 10 timelapse in Manhattan, where I stayed less than 48h, and 1 timelapse of me working on my computer any other day. *shrugs*
- 140,769 pictures: I purchased a hard drive to handle the amount of data collected during this project. A tiny fraction of the 140,769 pictures made the cut but I still have them all in a drawer.
I believe this project taught me exactly what I needed to learn while doing it. I still need to progress in the fields mentioned above, but I mutated in what I think is a better version of myself and as much as I was able to within this exercise. I also have no doubt that everything I learned doing this particular project will come handy in unexpected ways in 2014 and later on.
I want to thank every single person that is on this video. I received a lot of love and support doing it, and during the (dark) days where I really didn’t feel like doing it and thought it would bore the hell out of the Universe, this love and support proved to be key for me to continue.
Last But Not Least:
If you enjoyed the music in the video, consider buying them:
SONG 1: TRUTH by Alexander
As Brainpicking says so well, donating = loving.
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