Share this

We use cookies and various other bits of data to improve learn more about our privacy and cookies policy

3650 Days: A Decade of Selfies with Jon Devo

- 7 years ago

Choosing the subject for your next photo-project can be tough. Many are driven by their passions and hobbies, but whatever the topic you choose, it’s a fact that any project will command one single element more than any other. Dedication.

So consider the fact that camera-obsessed Jon Devo tasked himself with the mammoth project of taking a single selfie, every day for an entire decade!

We’ve posted the resulting, impressive montage below, so do take a look. When you do, consider the efforts that has gone into Jon’s finished piece and ask yourself; could you do the same?

Writing about the project, Jon said: “Turning 20 I felt like I should do something fun to mark an otherwise plain birthday. Armed with the Sony CyberShot DSC-R1 bridge camera, I set out to take a picture of my face everyday until I turned 30.

“It was 2006 and YouTube and Facebook were in their infancy, and the term “selfie” wasn’t really a thing”

It was 2006 and YouTube and Facebook were in their infancy, and the term “selfie” wasn’t really a thing, but the Sony R1 was one of the first cameras I’d ever seen that had a fully-articulated screen that could face forwards, so it helped to inspire the idea by making it easier. I stuck with that camera for at least seven years or so, occasionally having to supplement it with a phone or smaller cameras when travelling or staying out longer than planned. As you’ll notice, I got better at taking the pictures over time, trying to keep my facial expression as neutral as possible (most of the time) so that the ageing process would be more visible.

It seems like such a small thing to do, taking a single picture of yourself everyday, but it was tough, especially for someone as forgetful as I can be. I always had to ensure I had a camera with me, usually the R1, which wasn’t the smallest camera to squeeze into coat pockets or hand luggage.

I didn’t originally start this project to share it so widely, but as social media began to turn into the beast that it’s become and others began to share similar time-lapse sequences of themselves and their families, I realised that my project may be a fun one to share online when complete. What I hadn’t anticipated was the anxiety I would have about sharing it.

People often say I have hardly aged, and that I look younger than I am, but having to sift through thousands of pictures of myself and create a timeline, I saw all of the life that has happened to me, on my face. I saw all of my insecurities: bad hair days, bad skin days, scars, cuts, bruises, weight losses and gains…all laid bare, frame-by-frame, back to back, good days and bad #NoFilter.

I don’t really think there’s a point to it, but if I’ve learned anything on reflection it would be that sunscreen on your face and/or a big hat on sunny days is always recommended. Secondly, that style and hair should be explored and enjoyed because we don’t get any do-overs, so we may as well express what we feel during the days we have. Finally, three things that are apparent in this video that have given me joy these past 10 years are family, friends and the good fortune to travel. I want to make sure I keep those three things as my focus for the rest of my life.

Sadly, due to a computer crash in 2014 [wine killed my Macbook] and a couple of stolen phones [thank you Rio], I lost some days along the way, but what I have put together, hopefully still tells a story of one man’s journey from 20 to 30. Thanks for watching and sorry that my face features in so much of it; I made it as short as I could”.

Thanks for sharing with PhotoBite, Jon; it definitely gives some perspective on the level of dedication that a photo project can command. We’re looking forward to your 30-40 project!

Watch Jon’s full video montage below:

About the author

Read 3650 Days: A Decade of Selfies with Jon Devo

Simon Skinner

Co-founder // Editor

Having spent many years working in various pockets of the music industry, and always with a camera in hand, Simon has worked with organisations such as Warner/Chappell, Food Records and ultimately, co-founding the innovative independent record label, Izumi Records before moving fully into the world of publishing in 2007. Amongst numerous other projects in the last decade, he has been responsible for a number of specialist photo trade magazines and journals for the filmmaking and photography communities, along with a coffee table book entitled, "Great Britons of Photography' which he produced with Peter Dench and Leica. Now heading up PhotoBite, Simon and the team have set themselves a task of delivering informative and inspirational content for photographers of all levels, from the beginner, shooting with smartphones, to the seasoned photographer and filmmaker.