52: A Prime Number (That Isn’t A Prime)

A couple of years ago I started participating in the already-popular Project 365, an online and ongoing project wherein photography enthusiasts aim to take at least one photo each day for a full year. I kept at it as best I could but, sadly, the combination of work overload, a depression and lack of inspiration caused me to miss a couple of days throughout the year.

Ever since then I realized that doing something as immensely disciplined as a daily project requires a much more structured lifestyle where such disciplined activities can be fitted into. That structured lifestyle was not one I was familiar with, as the past nine years of my life have been more whirlwind-like than anything resembling the life built on a foundation of education that so pervasively depicts most people in the Western world. My decade of the Aughts (that would be 2000–2009) was also my first decade spent being a working man on the world wide web, kickstarting a career that saw both a sudden rise to (very moderate) stardom as well as a quickly-followed disappearance into obscurity.

Put another way, “structured” was not a word commonly associated with my lifestyle.

Since 2009 was not a grand year for me, I decided to make sure I wouldn’t be saying the same thing about 2010 one year from now. Fortunately, there are much better things than New Years resolutions to help me out with that.

Getting into a more structured—and thus, more disciplined—lifestyle takes either one or both of two things: a strong sense of self-disciplinary motivation, or the encouragement of friends. The former is obvious, but if one possesses that already they’re not likely to have this kind of problem in the first place. The latter can come in many forms, peer pressure being a perfectly valid one at that. Enter from the left: Project 52. Enter from the right: 52 Weeks Thing.

To say that I am blessed with the friendships of so many, many, very many fantastic, creative and inspiring people would be akin to saying that the universe is “kinda big”. Epic complementary chit-chat aside, thanks to a couple of well-placed friendships I am now participating in not one, but two weekly projects that challenge me to be creative. One of them (P52) is decidedly focused on writing—an activity I aim to do a lot more this year—whilst the other (52WT) is much more ambiguous about the execution of your creative endeavor each week. Want to take a photograph of the theme of the week? Go for it. Draw something? Go for it. Write, film, sing, play—go for it.

I’ve set myself a large number of goals this year, but most of them will be kept under wraps for as much as possible (because announcing your plans is bad). One I’m happily sharing with the world is my participation in these two weekly projects, as they will help bring more structure to my life—not to mention the great output they’ll encourage.

So herewith I start my 2010 Project 52, wherein I’ll write a post for this blog at least once a week, every week for the rest of this year—and perhaps, hopefully, for much longer after that. Tomorrow the 52 Weeks Thing will see its first week’s theme posted, but I’ll be using my Tumblr to participate in that one.

If all of this has sounded interesting to you, why not participate? Both projects are open to all; Project 52 is pretty serious about your committing to it whereas 52 Weeks Thing is very much non-committal. The most important thing to remember, however, is those three simple words that made a shoe company world famous:

Just do it.

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