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Shuttercal.com – My 365 Daily Photo Project – Month One

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Ever since I got my first iPhone back in ‘07 I’ve tried to take a regular picture of what I was up to. Really this was just for my own personal record and the photos weren’t really all that great. Over the past year or so since I got my DLSR and I started to take a real interest in photography. I have noticed that I was taking more photos with greater consideration. With the new iPhone 4 picture quality is actually very impressive and in the right conditions it can produce some very nice photos. Because I now have a camera with me all the time I thought I would experiment by taking one photo daily. I roughly started this in September ‘10. I kept doing this for about 3 months during this time I was trying to think of ways I could keep an organised record of it. I wanted to have it online somewhere so it would be backed up and I could show other people what I’ve been up to.

More after the break…

It was on Jan 10th ‘11 that I came across shuttercal.com. I had decided I was going to try and make my own simple blogging site where I could upload a photo and add a small amount of text. Before I started trying to achieve this I thought I would have a quick look on Apples app store to see if there is an app that allows you to upload a photo from your phone to a blog in some way.. this is when I came across shuttercal’s app. I read the description and immediately signed up!

Shuttercal is pretty much the ideal site I was looking for/going to try and make. There is a small profile about your self and the equipment you use down the left. In the middle they have used a calendar based system for displaying the photos.

Uploading photos to the site is dead simple. You can either click on the day where you want to add the pic and it gives you the option to choose a file and add a description. Another way is via the iPhone app. The app is very basic, It allows you to choose a photo from your camera roll, select a date and add a description. I have spoken to Scott (DefaultArtist) who runs the site and he says they’re working on the next version which will include more features.

(above images taken from shuttercal.com)

After looking at the site some more I noticed they offer a printing service too. At first I wasn’t bothered by this and thought it would probably be a waste of money. But the more I looked and thought about it I eventually decided I would go for it! What they have done is create what they call a “shoebox” which is a custom box with 12 slots in where you can place your photos from each month. At the end of every month you can use their online print manager to select the style of print you want then get it shipped directly to you.

I decided to work out how much all this was going to cost me.. basically its quite a lot.. But I haven’t really got many of my photos printed. It’s so easy to take a million digital photos nowadays and just leave them un-touched and forgotten on a hard drive somewhere. I really liked the idea of having a physical collection of 365 photos from every day of a year.

So enough of my justification here’s a little break down of the costs to have these pics printed and shipped from California to the UK.

Starting cost is $43.98  which includes one month of photos, shoe box and shipping.

Monthly cost including shipping is $16.99

11 months at $16.99 per month.

11 * 16.99 = 186.89

 $186.89 plus the $43.98 starting cost (inc one months worth of prints).

186.89 + 43.98 = 230.87

Total cost for the year is $230.87 divided by the current conversion rate of 1.5 $ to the £.

230.87 / 1.5 = 153.91

£154 for the year divided by 12 for monthly cost.

154 / 12 = 12

£12 a month divided by 30 for cost per photo.

12 / 30 = .40

So it costs roughly 40p per print, £12 a month and £154 for the year.

Again this might seem a lot and I know there’re plenty of other online printing services that print cheaper but the thing is I would never go to the bother of manually organizing and ordering a monthly batch of photos. Plus these are printed on high quality thick paper on both sides and with the description, date and photo number.

So over all I think its a worth while investment… well, we will see.

I would highly recommend giving this a shot if you have an interest in photography! It all most forces you to be aware most of the day, looking out for the perfect photo opportunity. This can be quite exciting but also slightly annoying especially when its getting to the end of the day and you still haven’t taken a photo. I’m not trying to take an amazing photo everyday I’m simply using the process as a means of practice and a way to document what I get up to.

I will add another post once I receive the shoebox and first batch of photos.

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