52 Week Smartphone Challenge

Posted on Tuesday, 10th December 2019 3:38 PM EST

I recently purchased an iPhone 11 Pro, and I am impressed by the images produced by the tiny cameras and the imaging software in these devices. The 1.54mm wide-angle lens in my iPhone 11 Pro has a field-of-view that is wider than my Fujinon 16-55mmF2.8 R LM WR and is excellent for landscape and cityscape photography while the “portrait” lens combined with imaging software makes the iPhone 11 Pro an excellent “everyday camera”. I don't want anyone to get hung up on the specs but for photo geeks, the three rear cameras on the iPhone 11 Pro have the full-frame equivalent of 13mm, 26mm, and 51mm prime lenses.

To explore and help me learn to use this new tool, I am doing an iPhone Photography 365 Day Project for the first time in several years. From experience, I know that finding inspiration in every day can make a 365-day project challenging. Somedays, I may not have the discipline or time to capture new images. Some days, I capture several images choosing one picture only, to represent the day. I want to do something else with those images.

I am borrowing an idea from the Carroll County Camera Club which got the idea from Photography 52 Week Challenge and inspired by my long-running participation in Frank Jansen’s Tuesday Photo Challenge, I want to create a “52 Week Smartphone Photography Challenge” and do it along with whoever will join me. My preference was to limit the challenge to the iPhone, but after some thought, I realised that Samsung and other manufacturers make smartphones with excellent mobile cameras. So please, use any smartphone you want. You don't have to use the same one every week.

A theme/keyword will be provided for each week of the year. The full rules of this challenge are:

  • The week starts on Monday and ends the following Sunday.
  • You may capture as many images as you like but please select and post only one picture to the challenge.
  • Capture an image on any smartphone you own.
  • Write a post with an image for the week’s topic/theme/keyword.
  • Tag your post with 52WeekSmartphoneChallenge. Please review this WordPress article about how tagging works.
  • Create a pingback link to the weekly post (note: pingbacks may not appear immediately, as my site is set up to require approval for linking to it.)
  • At the end of the week, I hope to compile a list of the submissions so that you can find and comment on each others' posts.
  • Participation is voluntary.

If you don't capture anything at all in a particular week, don’t beat yourself up. Sometimes there may have an unforeseen circumstance that pulls us away from committing to the challenge. Just proceed to focus on the next posting, or you can choose to post two photos next week to fill in the gap.

Let's have some fun! The challenge list below is from the Dogwood 52 Week Photography Challenge by photographer Dale Foshe of Dogwood Photography.

One more thing, the year 2020 has 53 weeks, with week 53 ending on January 3, 2021. For week 53 we’ll take a break to relax and ring in the new year with friends and family.

Week #Topic/ThemeDescription
WEEK 1 ends 5 JanuarySelf-PortraitTake a picture that tells us who you are, without actually showing your face.
WEEK 2 ends 12 JanuaryRule of ThirdsYou already know what the rule of thirds is, now is the time to use it.
WEEK 3 ends 19 JanuaryBlack and WhiteYour inspiration this week is to simply take an amazing Black and White photograph of any subject you want.
WEEK 4 ends 26 JanuaryWarmthTell a story that makes us feel warm inside.
WEEK 5 ends 2 FebruarySymmetryLandscape is one of the most practised types of photography. Use Symmetry in a Landscape to create a new viewpoint for this week's image.
WEEK 6 ends 9 February#NoFilterNo limit on what you shoot this week, as long as the image is pure. No filters, presets or other edits. Basic exposure corrections only this week.
WEEK 7 ends 16 FebruaryLove StoryMake us feel the love in this week's photo. Tell a love story in one image.
WEEK 8 ends 23 FebruaryLeading LinesIt is easy to use Leading Lines to show depth in an image or guide the eye to a specific spot in the image. Instead, this week use leading lines to show the concept of infinity.
WEEK 9 ends 1 MarchMoodYour Artistic Inspiration this week is the mood you are feeling today. Take that mood and use it to create art.
WEEK 10 ends 8 MarchHometownTell us the story of your hometown. It could be a famous landmark, something the town is known for, or even just your favourite place to relax.
WEEK 11 ends 15 MarchFill the FrameUsing Fill the Frame is a great way to isolate your subject and create interest in your photo. Can you do it with only one colour in the frame? Fill the Frame with one colour.
WEEK 12 ends 22 MarchTrashTrash is your inspiration. Tell a story or create something beautiful.
WEEK 13 ends 29 MarchNew BeginningsOur world is full of circular patterns; as some things end, others begin. Tell us a story of a New Beginning.
WEEK 14 ends 5 AprilCenter FrameCenter Framed composition is a great way to isolate your subject. Use this Portrait knowledge to create a portrait that exhibits loneliness.
WEEK 15 ends 12 AprilAnonymousThis week's inspiration is Anonymous. Interpret this how you wish.
WEEK 16 ends 19 AprilShadowTell a story. Make it compelling while only using shadow.
WEEK 17 ends 26 AprilBalanceBalanced composition is pretty straightforward unless you are trying to shoot in the "Accidental Renaissance" style. So shoot a balanced image in the Accidental Renaissance style.
WEEK 18 ends 3 MayWeight or MassHeavy as a stone, light as a feather. Find inspiration and shoot an amazing photograph.
WEEK 19 ends 10 MayAgingLove it or hate it, ageing is something we all experience. So tell us the story of Aging in a single photograph.
WEEK 20 ends 17 MayNegative SpaceCreate a powerful landscape using Negative Space.
WEEK 21 ends 24 MaySerenityWhat does Serenity mean to you?
WEEK 22 ends 31 MayStrangerIt is easy to tell the story of someone you know. So for this week's challenge, I want you to tell the story of a stranger.
WEEK 23 ends 7 JuneLeading LinesYou have already used leading lines to show Infinity. Now try to use strong leading lines in food photography.
WEEK 24 ends 14 JuneWho inspires youInspiration comes from many places. Tell us about who inspires you.
WEEK 25 ends 21 JuneFreedomFreedom means many things to many people. Tell us a story about what Freedom means to you.
WEEK 26 ends 28 JuneGeometryWe live in a world surrounded by geometry. Use Geometry in your photo this week.
WEEK 27 ends 5 JulyGratitudeWhat are you grateful for? Show us.
WEEK 28 ends 12 JulyYour CulturePhotographers participating in the challenge come from nearly every country and culture. Tell us the story of your culture.
WEEK 29 ends 19 JulyDepth of FieldDepth of Field is a great way to isolate your subject. Instead, for the challenge though I want you to use DoF to make a subject appear part of something larger.
WEEK 30 ends 26 JulyExit"Every exit is an entry to somewhere else". Be inspired by the Exit this week.
WEEK 31 ends 2 AugustFriends and FamilyTelling the story of someone you know well is sometimes the hardest story to tell.
WEEK 32 ends 9 AugustFrame within theUsing only natural elements frame your subject. No actual picture frames allowed.
WEEK 33 ends 16 AugustTell a LieIt is said that the "Camera Never Lies". Prove it wrong.
WEEK 34 ends 23 AugustColor without ColorTell a colourful story, but do it in black and white.
WEEK 35 ends 30 AugustSymmetry PortraitSymmetry is a strong compositional technique most often used in landscapes and architecture. So break the mold by using Symmetry in a portrait.
WEEK 36 ends 6 SeptemberYour HabitsSome habits are good, and some are bad. Your inspiration this week is either.
WEEK 37 ends 13 SeptemberSeasonsThe weather is changing! Find inspiration in the seasons.
WEEK 38 ends 20 SeptemberRule of OddsThe rule of odds is easy enough to understand and employ. So use the rule of odds in an Urbanscape/Architecture photo.
WEEK 39 ends 27 SeptemberThe ElementsEarth, Fire, Wind, Rain, and Spirit. Find inspiration in the elements of our world.
WEEK 40 ends 4 OctoberModern ConvenienceWhat modern convenience of 2019 cannot you live without? Create an image that looks like an advertisement for your favourite Modern Convenience.
WEEK 41 ends 11 OctoberColor TheoryColor Theory is a huge part of a composition that most photographers don't explore. So it is time to explore it. Use Color Grading to create an image that looks like it is a still from a movie.
WEEK 42 ends 18 OctoberWork Work WorkWork, let it inspire you this week.
WEEK 43 ends 25 OctoberFilm-NoirFilm Noir is a dark and moody type of photography well suited to storytelling. So tell us a story using Film Noir.
WEEK 44 ends 1 NovemberViewpointChanging your viewpoint creates a different perspective and is often used by photographers to create interest. Shoot this week from the viewpoint of another person.
WEEK 45 ends 8 NovemberMusicalMusic is part of the soul, so let it inspire you this week.
WEEK 46 ends 15 November7 Deadly SinsThe 7 deadly sins are Pride, Envy, Gluttony, Lust, Anger, Greed and Sloth. Tell us a compelling story about one of the 7 deadly sins.
WEEK 47 ends 22 NovemberRule of ThirdsThe rules of thirds is so popular because it is so versatile. This week use the rule of thirds to show emotion.
WEEK 48 ends 29 NovemberCurrent EventsWhat is happening in the world today? Be inspired by current events.
WEEK 49 ends 6 DecemberStormsStorms are a powerful force of nature. Show us weather at its best.
WEEK 50 ends 13 DecemberPatternsPatterns/Repetition are another well known compositional rule, but have you ever tried to use it in Macro Photography? Well, now you can!
WEEK 51 ends 20 DecemberFoodBe inspired by Food. Yes, it really is that easy this week. You made it this far you deserve the break. A sweet, delicious break.
WEEK 52 ends 27 DecemberSelf-PortraitIn the first week, you took a self-portrait and told us who you think you are. To finish this off take a self-portrait that shows us who others think you are.

20 thoughts on “52 Week Smartphone Challenge”

  1. Awesome idea mate, well done on taking on the challenge of not only the 52 week but also the challenge of curating it. Looking forward to participating.

  2. So I kicked off this project and panicked as people submitted entries. What have I done!? And I am already behind schedule. The struggle is real!?Honestly, I had hoped to announce the project but officially start Week 1 with the start of the New Year. A friend on Facebook even launched a new blog just so that he could participate. But with the responses I received, I think I have little choice but to start early with this first post.Week 1's topic is "Self-Portrait," and I had a few days to think about what I should post. I was inspired by the only deadhead in the hameau entry, but my work desk is a complete mess right now. My kitchen is being remodelled, so we had to move stuff around, some of which ended up on my desk to make space for contractors to work and to store the appliances, new cabinets, packaged food items, etc. A messy desk is not really "me."I've been cooped up in the house for the last few months dealing with health challenges, and despite a dislike for cold weather, I much prefer being outside. This photo was taken on one of my short stumbling walks around my neighbourhood. I like this image because it shows a line of what I think are eastern white pine (Pinus strobus) trees resisting, as evergreens do, against the cold of winter. This fast-growing, long-lived pine is among the vital pine species in North America, grown both for timber and for landscape purposes.The image was captured with Adobe Lightroom Mobile, my current favourite camera app, and a filter was applied. I like Adobe Lightroom Mobile because all my captured mobile images, including any edits, are automatically synced through Adobe Creative Cloud to my Adobe Lightroom Classic catalogue on my Mac.One bit of housekeeping, I've edited the announcement post to include dates in the table so we can keep track of progress.Now for round-up of the posts.

    Frank Jansen of Dutch Goes The Photos writes about his love affair with snow shot with his iPhone 11 Pro Max and the NeuralCam app.

    I.J. Khanewala embraces and accepts his disorganized self.
    From the the only deadhead in the hameau, we are shown that sometimes creativity can be messy.

    TiongHan tells a moving story of renewal after battling a major health challenge.



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  3. N E W • 52 Week Smartphone Challenge is a new challenge by Khürt Williams. The rules are simple: there’s a ‘theme’ every week and your photo has to be taken with a smartphone. For the fine print see the linked post. This first week’s challenge is to post a self-portrait that doesn’t actually shows yourself but does convey your personality…

    N E W • ‘self-portrait’ • Taken in Rotterdam with my iPhone XR back camera 4.25mm f/1.8 a few days agoAs a few of you may know, I was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease (PD) 15 years ago. If there is one constant that marks this disease, it is the change for the worse. Roughly 2 years ago I was labelled a Phase 4 patient (out of a maximum of 5 stages) which means as much that I was almost paralyzed and that my neurologist at the time deemed it irresponsible to be living on my own. The one good thing he did was to convince me to undergo a Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) where they drill a hole on either side of your skull and plant to electrodes deep inside the brain. If you want to know how it works just use the above link.

    N E W

    After a brutal day in surgery (6 hours), of which most of the time I was fully conscious and awake, the miracle I had been promised happened. It felt like a re-birth from the next morning onwards. The N E W me astonished not only myself, but my girlfriend, my mother and brother, my 2 kids and some close friends as well. I could walk again without my cane (never touched it again since that day), my tremors had gone as had most other physical symptoms such as ‘freezing’. I felt, and still feel N E W. Reborn. Lucky to wake up every morning. Despite the fact that the DBS only halted the physical symptoms of PD. The disease itself keeps wrecking havoc in my brain.

    Bumpy road to this sense of N E W-ness

    The past two years however have had some deep lows. They have ‘finished’ the fine tuning the software responsible for firing the electric impulses only a few weeks ago. I have significantly lost out in my capability to communicate as my speech has become slow, slurry and sloppy. I can still not write, and typing goes at a snail’s pace. Furthermore I, but predominantly my girlfriend, have suffered the backlash of my short-fuse in terms of temperament (for which I’m eternally sorry). This probably was a combination of my impatient nature, which was fueled to an unacceptable level by part of the pills I still have to take daily.

    To cut a long story short, my personality is slowly becoming N E W as well, as PD rages on. And not everything is rosy. To paraphrase Brad Pitt whose last words as a dying IRA-terrorist in the movie Patriot were: ‘Ay laddy, this is not an American movie. It doesn’t have a happy ending.

    I am determined to add ‘…yet‘.

    For a more lighthearted post see for instance this one.

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  4. It took me some time to get the hang of the rule of thirds but I think following (and sometimes) ignoring this rule has improved my photography.

    What is the Rule of Thirds? The rule of thirds involves mentally dividing up your image using 2 horizontal lines and 2 vertical lines, as shown below. You then position the important elements in your scene along those lines, or at the points where they meet. A rule of thirds grid.Photography Mad

    I was at a local luncheonette, Aunt Molly's, for breakfast and wanted to capture the look of this man reading his newspaper over breakfast, a sight that is rare in these time of smartphones and tablets. For this photograph, I put the subject, the man having breakfast, into the centre grid and use the 6mm "portrait" lens.Here are other entries for the 52 Week Smartphone Challenge.
    Frank Jansen



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