Our family are now big fans of Shuttercal – a new way to journal – utilizing today's technology to document everyday life though photos and text. Designed to store one photo per day in a personal online calendar Shuttercal challenges us to reflect on and curate the single photo / story that best represents each day. The bonus add on (and what convinced us to sign up) is to have real prints delivered to your house each month.
Living in a digital world surrounded by so many cool gadgets offers us numerous ways to document our daily lives. The abundance and ease of today's technology does not necessarily make us more creative, rather the volume of photos and video I take on a daily basis can dilute or distract from what is significant. My computer is bursting with media captured with a camera (point and shoot, iPhone, video…) and rarely do these get "printed" to hold and share in real life instead of the rotating slide show on a digital screen. Sharing photos is so easy today with a touch of a few buttons we can easily email first day of school pictures with the grandparents living across the country but at the same time I'm nostalgic for and crave things that feel more personal and tactile and do not always involve my laptop…sitting around the living room with my family listening to albums on the turntable looking at photo albums or reading books or magazines made of paper is a favorite way to spend family time in our house.
My boys learned about Shuttercal this summer while attending their first Providence Geeks Dinner with dad. Not only did they have a blast hanging out at AS220, they liked hearing local entrepreneurs share their business story. How cool is that?
Both boys enjoy using the written word and images to tell stories, and often incorporate technology into their storytelling. They liked how Shuttercal could be used to document their daily life. And after seeing how easy it was to upload a daily photo, add a caption, text, or story they both put a Shuttercal subscription on their holiday wish list.
Although hesitant at first whether they would commit to the daily photo updates, my husband and I decided to take a chance on what seemed like a perfect opportunity for our kids to manage their own web accounts while giving them the freedom to make their own creative choices on how they documented their days. And if they do stick with the project for the year - their box of photos will document their transformation from a preteen to a teenager.
The Shuttercal folks live locally in Providence and asked our family to be in a short commercial. We had a blast getting to know Kim and Scott, the brains behind the company along with their local film crew, Andrew and Andreas. By the end of the session, we felt like old friends. As you can tell from the unscripted commercial, we are huge fans.