Five Minutes from Home

The Project:

Five minutes from home

What you need:

A camera (film or digital) and a stopwatch

What to do:

Stand at the front door of your building, home, or place of work. Start your timer and walk 1min in any direction away from your building. At 1 min pause the timer and take a photo. Take your time and try to get an interesting shot. Start your timer again and head out another minute. Do this five times so that you’ve documented a five minute path from your home.


-you must stop and not move from where you are at the minute mark. This is what makes it a challenge.

-if you shoot film, shoot all five with film. If you shoot black and white shoot all five in black and white.  Macro, flash, wide angle, etc, all same-same.

-all five photos should be taken from the same walk


-plan out your walk. Time it all out first without a camera and get some ideas about what time of day would be best to shoot, what route to take, and how to compose the scene

-if everything looks boring take a self portrait or bring a prop to photograph

-limit how much time you spend. Try not to spend more than twenty minutes for all five shots. If you get stuck just snap one and keep going.

-if you are using film make a note of what you did on each exposure so that you can group them and tell us how you made the photo.

-shoot with a goal, theme, or reason in mind. This will make you photos more interesting to look at and to talk about.


Imposing limits makes you think and try harder to see something that isn’t clear at first. I like to do this when I’m stuck in a rut. After I go through and take all five shots, I see things differently. Looking for something interesting in a confined space makes me shoot more deliberately. When I am thinking this way and looking through my viewfinder, I start seeing things as they would through the viewfinder. Then even when I’m not looking through my camera, I can still see clearly how a final product might look. Getting to know your how your camera sees a scene and training yourself to notice all that a scene has to offer will help to boost your creativity and make you excited to take pictures.

Here are my results from my first time doing this project.


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