Day 135 – Who Do You Blog For?   13 comments

Cherry blossoms135 days ago, I’d never penned a blog before. It started when I was looking for a project to help me push my skills as a photographer, to rediscover what I love about photography, to test my abilities and to try out new techniques and styles to find my own voice. It has been an interesting 135 days and I think I’ve learned a lot.

One thing I’ve learned is how supportive a blogging community can be. I’ve met the nicest folks amongst my fellow WordPress bloggers. I’ve seen some amazing and inspiring photography that has pushed me to work harder and to try new ideas. Plus, having other daily bloggers in the same boat sure helps keep the pressure on.

Early on I spent a lot of time looking at my stats, seeing how many people had visited each day, where they’d come from and which pages drew the most attention. I was thrilled when I had high numbers and a bit disappointed when the numbers were low. It was an over-simplified popularity metric and I was definitely obsessing a bit about my numbers and forgetting why I was writing this blog. So, the next thing I learned is to ignore the numbers. I don’t remember the last time I checked my site stats. It’s better this way. Counting site visits presumes that the goal of my blog was to be get lots of hits. That was never my goal. The quality of my photography is in no way measured by the number of hits my blog gets.

The flip side is that visitors represent community and the members of the community have a wide variety of views, opinions, and tastes that I really like tapping into. I’m so pleased when you drop by to read the blog and especially when you choose to share your thoughts on a photo. I like getting feedback and love it when someone offers specific ideas on what works and what doesn’t. Critique me. Tell me what you’d change if it was your photo.

Ultimately, this blog is about what I’m doing as a photographer and the photographic techniques and styles that I’m exploring to help me grow. So, in response to my own question, I blog for me. I share the details of how I make a photo to give back to my fellow photographers out there. I read other blogs for inspiration and I comment on others photos to be a member of my new blogging community.

Who do you blog for?

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13 responses to “Day 135 – Who Do You Blog For?

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  1. Why do we take pictures? To get the chance to be published, famous and rich one day or because we want to express ourselves? I take pictures (with my poor Nikon Coolpix) because I feel the need to express myself. I can’t deny that it’s nice to receive “I like” comments from other bloggers (if such comments are honest). Do they have right to tell me what I should or what I shouldn’t do with my images? No… Reason? If we give other people this right, who is the creator? They or we?
    Every time we create the image to please other people, to please their taste, we sell a bit of our own soul… and it doesn’t matter if we create art with a big “A” or with a small “a”.
    The ancient Romans said: “De gustibus non est disputandum”. I agree with them.
    I apologize for my bad English. I wish it was better! I would like to write something about processing my images on my blog although I’m not any photographer, I’m just playing with different ideas…

  2. I blog for you of course!!http://amonikabyanyuvva.wordpress.com/
    Seriously though, I love your work, my husband is a keen photographer, and that is why I subscribe to your blog. I recently completed a blurb book for him, check it out. He loved it.
    http://www.blurb.com/bookstore/detail/2054140

    • Congrats on putting together the Blurb book! I’m a huge fan of their service. I’ve made six books with them so far and I’m working on my seventh. That is a wide variety of shots in your book, looks like you’ve done some travelling! I particularly like the Orton frames (the combination of an out-of-focus image and an in-focus image). I used to do those with slide film making slide sandwiches. I’ve not really tried it with digital. Perhaps it’s time for me to give that technique a try again. Thanks for the idea!

  3. Also, you could help me. I downloaded some free software for him to play with, ‘picturenaut’ , to manage variations in exposure. The trouble I have is opening it once the software has worked its magic, as it saves it in TIFF and we only have photoshop 8.0. Is there a work around? Would that be the case if we bought software too? Hope you don’t mind me picking your brains.

    • I would have thought Photoshop CS (aka Photoshop 8) would have had no trouble opening a TIFF file as the format has been in use since the mid 80s. That’s 17 years before Photoshop 8!

      The problem is likely the bit depth. HDR programs typically use 32 bits per channel and Adobe only introduced 32-bit support in CS2. When he’s generating an image, have him try changing to 8 or 16 bits per channel. It’s under the Mode menu in Picturenaut. Then save the file and try opening it in PS again.

  4. Great picture, Mike. It is now on my desktop.

    • Glad to hear it Jim! I wasn’t actually entirely sold on this image originally and I wasn’t going to post it. I finally decided that I liked the colours and the brightness of the image; it felt very Springy.

  5. Lovely shot!
    I blog for fun. 🙂
    Life is all about fun, isn’t it? 😉

  6. I blog for myself! I have been taking pictures for years and never “published” any until late last year (August actually). The only reason I did was because Amy (definitely my MUCH better half) urged me to just get out there, I always have this feeling that my images are just missing something and you know what, I probably always will! We are our worst critic…? 😛 Anyway, I have always enjoyed your images Mike, I might not always comment but I do always view!

    As far as the image goes, love the compo, feels a tad under exposed to me though.

    • Fair point on the underexposure. I think I was being a bit overprotective of the highlights on my first pass. I just took another look at it and pushed the exposure up in Lightroom. I added .6 EV and I have to say that it looks a little better. Good call.

  7. I blog for myself AND I blog for everyone who visits my site! My site stats are important to me because they tell me how I am connecting with people.

    I’m not primarily a photographer, but I like to illustrate my stories with my photos if possible. That is expanding my way of looking at the world through the lens of my camera!

  8. I am glad you don’t obsess about the visits…I signed up and read your blog daily via email, but visit rarely. I do not comment often, although John and I comment to each other. We enjoy the commentary of your life, it somehow makes you all seem closer! I do enjoy your blog, photography and comments! Thanks for sharing!

  9. Good question, Mike, and my knee jerk answer was “for me,” but the longer I thought about it, the more complicated it seemed. I started photography & photo-blogging at roughly the same time, about a year ago. I photograph for me. It feeds my creative and technical urge and I enjoy wondering around looking at the world and seeing what I can wrestle out in my best artful way. Photo-blogging, I would say is more symbiotic. The blog is a space for me to share and receive feedback, but it also has an automatic community side in terms of returning that favor, although the reciprocity never feels burdensome because if it did, then why photo-blog. I’m a long way from where I want to be in the art of photography, but there is no doubt that the photo-blog helps move me forward. Just from merely looking at your photos I’ve learned a ton, so thanks!

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