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The Everyday Project: An Interview with Mary Beth Johnson

June 18, 2014

Today I’m so excited to share an interview I did with Mary Beth from Annapolis & Company. The internet is a funny place—a source of distraction at times, but in many cases for me, a source of friendship. Through our blogs, we’ve become fast friends and soul sisters and I am so thankful for that. Whether you’ve heard of The Everyday Project or not, be sure to scroll down to hear more from Mary Beth about the heart behind her fabulous iPhone photo series and learn how you can share a bit of everyday beauty from your world with the rest of us…

The Everyday Project: An Interview with Mary Beth Johnson | Thoughts By Natalie

Could you start by sharing what The Everyday Project is?

The Everyday Project is a phone photography series for anyone who likes taking pictures. It’s also for anyone who wants to stop making excuses, finding the beauty in life right where they’re standing.

When did you start it and what’s the motivation behind it?

I got my iPhone late in the world of technology (April, 2013) and began the project later that summer. As a professional photographer, I knew the basics of composition, lighting, and perspective, but working with a phone and editing apps was brand new territory for me. My motivation for the project began simply as a desire to learn. I opened the project up for anyone who wanted to learn too and the response was overwhelming. My desire was for people (including myself!) to use what they had, with where they were, to make beautiful images.

The Everyday Project: An Interview with Mary Beth Johnson | Thoughts By Natalie

The Everyday Project: An Interview with Mary Beth Johnson | Thoughts By Natalie

How do you decide what the prompt is for the week—do you plan ahead on a calendar, or sort of go with what you’re feeling inspired by lately?

As with all good things, the project has evolved over time. We began with tutorials, introduced up-and-coming apps, moved on to sticky social media issues, interviewed popular and talented IGers, and now we’re doing weekly photo prompts. I started the prompt challenge in the spring to keep things fresh and with the intent to carry it through the summer. I created a list (found HERE) so that people can see ahead. The prompts include words like “family”, “carefree”, and “unexpected”. I love the diversity you can find in images when you leave room for the imagination.

The Everyday Project: An Interview with Mary Beth Johnson | Thoughts By Natalie

The Everyday Project: An Interview with Mary Beth Johnson | Thoughts By Natalie

How has the response been?

Overwhelming! I began the series thinking there was a select group of moms out there interested in growing their phone photography and finding beauty in the midst of diaper changes and meal planning. In contrast, I found that people from all walks of life and from places all around the world were drawn to this idea of not making excuses, looking for “the good” in life, and celebrating it with images.

Your Instagram profile says you “see beauty in unexpected places” (something I totally relate to!)—how has this Instagram project impacted your ability and desire to seek beauty everywhere?

I think Ansel Adams, iconic black-and-white photographer, says it best…

“You don’t make a photograph just with a camera. You bring to the act of photography all the pictures you have seen, the books you have read, the music you have heard, the people you have loved.”

Photography trains our eyes to look and see the everyday beauty, and anyone, no matter where you are in life, has the ability to do just that.

The Everyday Project: An Interview with Mary Beth Johnson | Thoughts By Natalie

What do people need to do to participate?

Simply tag your photos #theeverydayproject on Instagram! Clicking around on the hashtag will lead you to fellow everyday-beauty-seekers. I promise you will be inspired and maybe discover a few more IG friends to follow. You can also read along on Annapolis & Company where I blog about the project and curate fresh new content to keep you inspired in your phone photography.

Photos by Annapolis & Company

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2 Comments

  • Reply mary beth June 19, 2014 at 5:19 am

    Awww…thank you for interviewing me, Natalie! I hope someday to meet up in real life, but I am so so grateful for the internet and how it can create community.

    You’re the best. ;)

    • Reply Natalie Lynn Borton June 19, 2014 at 8:08 am

      Agreed!! Loved having the chance to share about your awesome project here on TBN. Love what you do! Xo

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