Ben Heimsath in Austin, Texas is sharing daily in his Church-a-Day project. 

He explains...  

They could be anywhere! Images or references to churches, worship places, temples, or sacred objects of all kinds are much more common than we think. So inevitably we take them for granted.

Maybe it’s a place that we see so often we no longer think of its connection to faith or spirituality. Maybe it’s a common object or image that we never associate with a faith or a spiritual environment. It could be a place, a building, a rendering, or a media image. These spiritual or faith connected visuals could be almost anywhere. My goal is to focus on one place, image, or reference to a church, temple, or spiritual object every day for 365 days.

I use the label ChurchaDay with some hesitation. In our Western culture, most of us understand and associate with a Christian heritage. However, for Americans, in both historic and modern times, the number of diverse religions and their influences is truly astounding. So this inquiry is to identify and spotlight elements of all faiths and traditions that far too often are hiding in plain site.

Why did you decide to do this project? This project fell in my lap - almost literally - on December 31. My wife had been waiting all day for a delayed Amazon order. So before we left for a New Year’s gathering in the country, I checked the mailbox one last time. There it was, Noah Scalin’s 365: A Daily Creativity Journal. My wife read out loud as I made our way through traffic. Before too long, she asked me what I would do if I could commit to something creative everyday. “That’s pretty easy,” I found myself saying, “I would share something about churches and holy places.”

I’m an architect who has spent the past 30 years building a practice that specializes in project with churches and faith communities of all kinds. I’m often surprised to realize how much I’ve been able to see and learn in my day-to-day activities that most people never appreciate or experience. This is a chance to share.

How has doing a yearlong/daily project affected your life? So far, Church-a-Day has been an outpouring. I’ve been thinking about many of these issues for a very long time. There’s something beautiful about committing to a daily deadline. The posts aren’t perfect, the pictures aren’t always architecturally stunning, but these ideas now have a home.

Now that I’m into my second month, I also find I’m forced to take action in a way I hadn’t before. If I drive by an interesting site, I start looking for a place to park so I can take pictures. When I’m online, I’m consciously looking for references to worship or faith places so I can bookmark the site.

Then there’s a few posts of things I don’t think I ever would have noted. My recent post about the Flash Factory in NYC came from a casual conversation during a conference call. My contact recalled his friend had gone out dancing and was impressed with the space that looked like a converted church. It wasn’t, but when I looked into it, the Flash Factory was actually a space made of castoff church pieces and maybe a start of a new trend.

See all of Ben's project HERE.  

Spoon-a-Day follow-up

Sonya Penn spent 2015 making a Spoon-a-Day for the entire year... 

What are the biggest lessons/skills you learned from doing your project? The biggest lesson that I learned is the immense power the daily routine has in our lives. One small thing each day adds up to something quite huge over a year's time. Generally, it took me a little over an hour each day to form, photograph and post my daily spoon. That isn't a ton of time, but the resulting body of work that I see is quite substantial. I believe that even just 15 minutes a day of practicing something that you want to improve upon will give you amazing results over the course of a year.

In what ways did the project change your life? The project made me have a greater focus on just getting in there and making. There is a sign for artists that I have seen from time to time that says "Go to your studio and make stuff." You can't just wait for inspiration. You have to create, do and make to find your inspiration.

Now what? Ha! NOW, I am working on glazing all of these 365 clay spoons! I did glaze a lot of them during the course of the year, but there are still a lot of them to go. I am working to have them ready for a local show in April where people can come see them all as a group and purchase their favorites!

Read Sonya's original 365 interview HERE.

See all of Sonya's spoons HERE.  

365 Feathers

Lisa Marie Tsering in Twin Cities, Minnesota is creating 365 Feathers...

Why did you decide to do this project?  I decided to do this project to get back to my creative calling as an artist. I had spent nearly a decade pushing my personal creative desires to the side while I focused my energy on being a mom, wife and graphic designer. I dabbled in art projects on occasion and was happy enough, but the desire to step more fully into my art was something that had been lingering for a number of years and it was just getting harder and harder to ignore. I knew I needed to make a bold move and bring my art to the forefront. Once I made that commitment the idea for this yearlong project unfolded.

Feathers have been scattering my path for a few years now and I am always intrigued, inspired and grateful when I find one. When I made the commitment to pursue my art again I felt this knowing that I was to “follow the feathers” and that is what I have been doing with this project - creating art inspired by my connection to feathers. My big, lofty goal was to create a piece of art every day over the course of a year. I hit the one year mark a few weeks ago and completed 300 pieces of art. I didn’t hit my goal for the year, but considering I hadn’t had a consistent creative practice since college and being a mother of two young, rambunctious boys I think I put in a strong effort and am going to continue on and complete my 365.

How has doing a yearlong/daily project affected your life? The project has forced me to move through the fear that was preventing me from going forward with my art. I had a lot of fear about whether I was good enough, fear of what people would think, fear of failure, fear of not having anything to say as an artist. The fear and lack of confidence were paralyzing. But, over the course of this project I've noticed my confidence growing. I have more confidence when approaching the blank canvas, more confidence with my mark-making on the page (as well as making mistakes with confidence), more confidence in my ability to create, more confidence in showing my art, and this confidence is spilling over into other areas of my life. Also, I notice that I am a happier person when I am engaged in a consistent creative practice. Every day that I sit down to create my feather inspired art I feel content and in my element. After a creative session, my hands smudged with charcoal, I feel so damn grateful and inspired to pick it back up the next day.

See all of Lisa's feathers on Facebook or by searching for #365Feathers on Instagram.