Instagram #365photochallenge: The first 183 days

As I mentioned in my last post, I’m doing a challenge where I post a photo for every day of 2018. As of yesterday, I have done that for every day so far. Okay, technically, some days I skipped a few days and posted the missing photos later, but the end result is 183 days of photos.

I thought I would share some of my favorite photos that I have taken for the challenge and my thoughts on the challenge itself.

Day 1:

Day 1.jpg

This was the very first photo I took of the year. This is me and The Fiancé posing underneath the Michigan blanket that kept us warm while I watched my Carolina Gamecocks beat the Wolverines.

At this point, I hadn’t even had the idea to do the #365photochallenge. This was just an excuse to tease my favorite person about a football loss. The next day, while scrolling through Facebook, I saw a friend’s post about her own 365 day photo challenge. I decided that it looked like fun, so I hopped on the bandwagon the that day and every day since.

Day 12:

Day 12.jpg

This was an opportunistic photo I took while watching The Fiancé playing with a friend’s baby. It was just too cute not to share, even though I got my thumb in the shot. This is still probably the cutest picture I have of The Fiancé.

Day 13:

Day 13

Technically, this wasn’t my official #365photochallenge photo of the day. But the other one kinda stunk. So this is the one I’m counting. I wish I had the eye device a little bit farther up my face in the photo, but it’s still cool as is.

On a funny note, I actually used this photo months later to pinpoint the exact day I’d had my last eye appointment. Who knew Instagram could be so useful?

Day 29:

Day 29.jpg

This sunset photo was taken from the top of the new tower that houses the divinity school at Liberty University. The Tower of Bible, as some cheekily call it. If there’s one thing I miss about Liberty and Lynchburg in general, it’s the sunsets.

Day 56:

Day 56

A LOT of my daily photos ended up being picture of The Fiancé’s cats being adorable. Their names are Ratchet and Clank. I have no clue which this is because they are virtually identical. I’m thinking this is Ratchet, because he’s a tad darker, but in this light, it’s tricky to tell.

They hated both of us when the The Fiancé first brought them home, but they are much more cuddly now. They tend to back and forth in terms of power dynamics. We’ve noticed that whoever seems to be the alpha at a given moment will be the more friendly and cuddly of the two, and the beta will usually hide and run away.

Day 74:

Day 74.jpg

This was the first pretty good photo I posted during this challenge. I was starting to get back into photography and playing around with my old camera (pre-DSLR). I went out on a wet, snowy day and photographed some birds. From this point on, there are a lot more really good photos on my Instagram.

Day 81

Day 81

If you read my post about what I learned doing nature photography, you’ve already seen this photo. But it’s still worth putting on here because of the impact it had on me. This photo and other cool ones I got on this trip were important because they showed me that I was pretty good at this. This could be a fun hobby that I could turn into something else. If it weren’t for this trip and this photo, I wouldn’t be working on starting a photography business right now.

I also got engaged on this trip. So that was cool.

Day 102:

Day 102

I got really into hiking the last few weeks of my time at Liberty. This picture comes from a solo hike up on Liberty Mountain on a sunny day in early April. I was looking for birds, but instead I came across this eastern fence lizard. He let me get really close to him, and I got a cool photo out of the encounter.

Day 119:

Day 119.jpg

finally got my DSLR (a Nikon D3400), and after messing around with it for a few days, my friend here hired me to take her senior photos. This one was my favorite from the bunch. I had several friends ask me to do their senior photos in the next few weeks, and I used this pose for all of them because I liked it that much.

Day 131:

Day 131

It’s always nice to have friends that share your hobbies. I went on a hike with my friend here, and we both decided to take a version of this photo. She was fun to hike with because she understood my need to stop every few feet and take pictures. If you’re a photographer, I highly recommend going on photography hikes with other photographers.

If you want to follow my friend here, her handle is @eclecticrosephotography.

Day 133:

Day 133

I actually took this photo while waiting for a friend to show up for her senior photo session. This doggy’s name was Ajax and he was blind, as you can probably tell. He was soooo friendly! It was hard to get him to stay far enough away from me so I could take his picture. He really makes me want to do more pet photography.

Day 137:

Day 137.jpg

Another one of my favorite photos. I took it on a trek up a mountain with one of my best friends. He was such a cute little lizard, and I couldn’t help but take his photo.

Day 139:

Day 139

This is the only daily photo I didn’t personally take so far. Both my sister and The Fiancé both claim credit for this one, but I wasn’t there, so I can’t tell you who actually took it. A friend texted me afterward and said that my phone quote was his favorite from that day. It still makes me smile whenever I see it.

Day 149:

Day 149

Not all of my photos are so happy. This was the front of my car after I got clipped trying to get around a totally unrelated accident. I couldn’t see the guy coming because he was hidden in a tunnel behind me.

I was fine, though. And my car is fine now. Not looking forward to my insurance skyrocketing, though.

Day 179:

Day 179

This was a cute little toad which was just about as big as my thumbnail. I liked that I could see the little pads on the bottom of his feet. I took its picture while on a hike in First Landing State Park with The Fiancé. I got chewed alive by mosquitoes and biting yellow flies. I still have the welts and bumps from it, but thankfully, they aren’t as ungodly itchy as they have been in the last few days.

Day 183:

Day 183


And here we are at the end of the first half of the year. This was an assassin bug (I think…). I took its picture at Kiptopeke State Park out on the Eastern Shore of Virginia. One of these little guys hitched a ride on me and scared the tar out of me when I tried to get out of the car at the place we stopped at for lunch.


It’s been a good year so far, and I love that I’ll have these photos to look back on at the end of the year. Who knows? I might even do it again next year.

If you want to keep up with my #365photochallenge journey, you can follow me on Instagram at @ratherbewriting2018.