Seven Days of Self

If you look through my Flickr stream, you will see that since 2009 only a handful of the photos I’ve taken have been self portraits. Generally I avoid being in front of the camera (unless it’s Instagram, but those filters seemingly make anything forgiving). I find self portraits too finicky, and they usually result in me hating my face or body. Basically, self portraits are not my favourite form of photography to explore.

Occasionally, though, Rick and I talk about the need for a project that coerces us to pick up our cameras. Enter Seven Days of Self, a mini project that involved us taking a self portrait for 7 days. Simple. But this time we had people vote on themes, which were decided on the day. This generally left little time to plan and get the shot out there. By the way, I never have worked well under pressure.

Here are some facts:

  • One photo shot with the 45mm
  • Two photos shot with the 28mm
  • Four photos shot with the 50mm (my favourite lens)
  • ‘Apocalypse’ was my least favourite shot, despite how much the theme excited me
  • ‘Trust’ was my most well received photo
  • This is how Trust was shot
  • I got a cold after shooting ‘Wet’, so shut the fuck up when you say I wasn’t wet enough
  • Only two of my preferred themes were chosen out of the entire seven days
  • I got to learn some new Photoshop stuff
  • Photos were shot in the city centre, Merchant City, west end and the south side of Glasgow
  • Three pretty dresses were worn; one red, one green and one floral, and this was probably my favourite part of the whole project (getting to wear dresses)
  • The gun in the Apocalypse shot was for the original PlayStation
  • I did conceptual photography for the first time ever, and I’ll probably do it again
  • This has put me off doing a Project 50

Rick and I didn’t discuss the concepts in any detail, so we didn’t have much of an idea what each other were shooting. This made the big reveal quite interesting, and they always turned out so differently.

Here are the themes from all seven days. If you click on them it will take you to my Flickr, where there is a more in-depth description of each photo.

  1. My Other Life
  2. Apocalypse
  3. Trust
  4. Wet
  5. Illusion
  6. Desire
  7. Motion

Thank you to everyone who voted! Despite not loving some of my shots, I think the project was a success based on the reactions of other people and how involved some of you got, not to mention that it encouraged me to attempt something a little different.

I’ve also included Rick’s photos from the project here. It is pretty obvious which ones are his ‘cos he has a beard.



  1. Murray says:

    All fantastic stuff. Well done to both of you!

  2. This series of shots are great Ashley, I particularly like #3, 6 and 7. I’d like to give it a go myself.

    Are the shots timed, or have you set up the shot then then got someone else to hit the shutter?

    • Ashley says:

      You should give it a bash, I learned a thing or two and I guess that’s what it’s about. I use a remote for self portraits, but a few of the photos I had help with. It’s always easier with someone else around.

  3. Lorenzo says:

    Amazing work Ash/Rick, all these are impressive shots, really. And you look very at ease in front of the camera – despite you keep saying you are not comfortable 😉

    BTW, Ash it seems like you were not so wet in the pic… ok, I’ll stop it! 🙂

  4. Greg says:

    Yay. I think Rick has a better Other Life and Illusion, you have better everything else 🙂 Screw the “not so wet” thing, the focus on Wet is amazing! Also, your Apocalypse is great!

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