Smile — you'll be part of my collection | Ann Oxrieder


If you see me coming your way you might want to change direction. That is, unless you don’t mind me taking your picture.

Blame it on the iPhone app, “Photo 365,” which a friend suggested I download. “You take a picture a day for a year,” she said. Each picture loads into a calendar on the date you take it.

I like photography, but have limited time to pursue it, so the idea of taking only one photo a day sounded enticing.  It wouldn’t involve a big investment in time, but would guarantee I’d be alert for photo ops wherever I went.

“What pictures have you taken so far?” I asked my friend.

“None. I’m not sure what theme to choose.”

Theme? This project suddenly became more complicated and also more appealing.  A year’s worth of photos stitched together with one overarching thread? My first thought for a theme was "seasons," but I soon questioned whether I needed 200 pictures of rain.

I finally chose "people," a broad category, but one most likely to keep me going for a year. (Shortly after I began, I had to change the theme to ‘portraits’ to include pets of friends who weren’t willing for me to take their pictures ... yet.)

My first subject was Eleanor, who at 93 is the oldest among my writer friends. Thus far I’ve taken about 40 photos. My dentist, neighbors, travel agent, legislator, participants in my English conversation class, friends from elementary school and former work colleagues have all agreed to be the featured portrait for one date on the calendar.

I love this project. Even in this early stage, I feel warm and fuzzy as I thumb through my reminders of some of the wonderful people I’ve met over the course of my life.

The only problem I foresee in this venture is that I can’t fill 365 days with people who currently play a part in my life. This means that if I see you at the grocery store or in a restaurant and recognize you from my past, don’t be surprised if my first words are, “May I take your picture?”


Ann Oxrieder has lived in Bellevue for 35 years. She retired after 25 years as an administrator in the Bellevue School District and now blogs about retirement at http://stillalife.wordpress.com/.













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