with Courtney Slazinik
How to Create Supportive Photography Group

I am thrilled that so many people have signed up for the Project 365 as well as joining in the #ciuan365 on Instagram. Since it can be overwhelming to find your supportive group of photographers to help you through this project.

Honestly, I wouldn’t have made it through my first Project 365 if it weren’t for the supportive group that helped encourage me and keep me from quitting. Because, let’s be honest, you are going to have days where you want to quit. It’s normal. I remember putting someone on my blog around day 200 and something saying I was struggling and my buddies who I had never met came in to keep me going.

How to create your supportive group:

1. Return the love.
Click on the link that the person left to their own site. Head over to their site and comment on their photo.

2. Leave a genuine comment.
When you leave a comment don’t just leave a “adorable” or “cute kid”. Take the time to read what they wrote and comment on it. Point out something you like on the photo. Do not critique their image unless they ask for it.

3. Don’t wait for comments.
We have over 200 people who have linked up their blogs and want to be a part of your supportive community. Don’t wait for them to find you. You find them. Start with 5 blogs before yours or listed after yours. Leave comments on their blogs. Continue to reach out to 5 new blogs each day as you continue to find your group.

4. Link to the blogs you like on your site.
If you have a couple of blogs you like follow, link to these people on your side bar. This helps other people to find them. Plus it’s fun if you come to someone’s blog and see they are following someone you are following as well.

5. Click on people who leave comments on other blogs.
If you leave a comment on someone else’s photo look who else is commenting. Click on the link to their site and comment there. These people like to comment and may be more likely to come to your site and encourage you.

6. Try to comment everyday.
I realize not only are you taking, editing and posting images everyday but I really want to encourage you to spend 15 minutes commenting and creating a community. Keeping up with daily connecting to the bloggers you enjoy will help build that community. Even if you miss a day or two don’t stop commenting. Pick back up and leave some love.

7. Make it easy for others to comment.
If your blog requires someone to sign in to leave a comment, people may not do so. Also, removing words verifications that require an extra step is quite time consuming as well. I have tried to leave comments on several blogs already and for whatever reason my comments are not appearing. They are not waiting moderation they just disappear after I click submit. Have a friend test out your comment and see if they can leave one. I would hate for you to think no one is commenting when people are and you just aren’t getting them.

What is funny is as you build these communities you will feel like you know these people. I remember sitting on my couch and saw of a picture Laurie put up announcing she was pregnant. I squealed and yelled “Laurie’s pregnant”. My husband said “Who’s Laurie?”. Ha I had to inform him she was my internet friend. I talked about these girls I followed to my real life friends as if I knew them.


I have been blessed with continuing my friendships with several of the girls I met in my first year of blogging like Laurie and Jen. Plus, I have been able to meet them both in real life. You never know who will be in your community or how deep of a relationship you will build with them.


I really hope that you will take the time to seek out other photographers doing the same project as you and encourage each other. You never know the friendships you may create.

  • November 8, 2013 at 2:27 AM

    I always liked the style of your writing Courtney! It’s so uplifting and your post are really inspiring! Thank you that you keep on posting! Have a wonderful day!

  • November 8, 2013 at 9:24 AM

    Courtney, This is great advice! I did my first 365 with two friends and we definitely kept each other going.

    Thanks for this blog post, and your blog! I check in frequently and seem to find just what I need, from inspiration to information!

    • November 11, 2013 at 2:01 PM

      Thank YOU! I love that you had the support to make it through your first 365! Yay!

  • Rachel
    November 8, 2013 at 12:59 PM

    Such great insight here! You are so great at creating community and sharing the love :)! It is a blessing to all of us. I am no doing a 365, but I hope to be an encouragement to you ladies anyway! :)

    • November 11, 2013 at 2:01 PM

      We would love your encouragement! And one of these days I’m going to convince you to do a 365 :) Thanks for your sweet words!

  • Liz
    November 8, 2013 at 2:49 PM

    Thanks Courtney. We are having fun over at Facebook with this 365 Project…


    • November 11, 2013 at 2:02 PM

      I’m so glad to hear that! Yay!

    • January 7, 2015 at 3:34 PM

      Hi Liz ,i do the 365 at Facebook to(cause i didnt have Blog,can i join the Group please,somehow if i click the page,its show that its doesnt exist)i would really happy to hear from you(Lili Nis Mommygraphy)thank you

  • November 10, 2013 at 5:11 AM

    This is such fantastic advice. I have become a much better commenter and I am loving the connections I have begun to make. I am currently up to day 133 of my 365 project. I began on my own back in July as a way to improve and practice my photography. I post my months photos each month and daily upload to Instagram. Would love to connect with more people even though I started earlier.

    • November 11, 2013 at 2:02 PM

      Way to go on making it to 133!! Whoo hoo! That is a huge feet! Be sure to link up so people can find you!

  • November 10, 2013 at 5:46 AM

    I am having a blast connecting with other 365ers, and their work is so inspirational! It is so much fun to see snippets of their lives. Thanks for putting this together! April :)

    • November 11, 2013 at 2:03 PM

      It’s it fun to see a glimpse into people’s lives :) Glad you are enjoying it.

  • January 7, 2015 at 3:29 PM

    Thank you,this is my first 365 project and thanks to you i have the courage and the will to do this;)

  • Erinqq
    January 8, 2015 at 12:21 PM

    Courtney, thank you so much for your helpful tips! You mention that it’s more difficult to get people to comment if your blog must be signed into. Are there host sites where you can create a blog that people are not required to sign in to comment? Thank you!

  • Tanya Monroe
    January 8, 2015 at 6:18 PM

    I have been posting my 365 to instagram. tan8454. Is my name on that site.. I do not have a blog yet. I haven’t been editing anything…hope someone here can help. I have photoshop elements on my laptop, only use laptop for pictures. I always use my iPad…for some reason I cannot put my pictures on Instagram from the laptop. I can get on Instagram but can’t post pictures…can anyone help me please. Can post from iPhone 5s or ipad 3 Thanks for this post can’t wait to meet new friends!! Tanya

    • January 9, 2015 at 11:10 AM

      Instagram only allows people to upload from their app which has to be on a mobile device. Yes, you can post from an iPhone and I believe you can from an iPad. However, you will need to send your photos to your iPhone or iPad either through email or dropbox.

  • January 8, 2015 at 8:10 PM

    This could not have come at a better time! I haven’t done a good job building or connecting with other hobbyist like myself. This year I’m working on changing that. Looking back, at Click Away and not knowing anyone I left there fully inspired and uplifted. I was fortunate to have met some wonderful photographers (like yourself) who were so wiling to share and encourage each other’s photography journey. Hadn’t I been brave I would have missed out on this experience!

    • January 9, 2015 at 11:11 AM

      I’m so glad you were brave and came to lunch so we could meet. It is terrifying not knowing people but it only take a few seconds of bravery to make new friends. :)

  • January 12, 2015 at 3:03 PM

    I actually just started the project365 this year and I have 4 friends who are also photographers who I’ve asked to join me and it’s been fun talking photography with them. Two more friends have since joined.

    • January 13, 2015 at 10:16 AM

      I love that you are doing it with friends! That is awesome!

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