Over the years, I’ve collected several hundred URLs as bookmarks, each pointing to a photoblogger of one stripe or another. Lots of them have provided unwitting assistance, much of which has guided me well, others just offered direction, a daily image or some sage words.
Bored and between afternoon drive time radio, dinner and an evening of mindless (read unchallenging) TV watching, I decided to wander cyberspace for an hour or so and see what these photo mavens are up to today.
Not much is the answer. By no empirical measure, merely simple observation, I’d guess 90% of the URLs I visited are now dead ends, mostly ending in a 419. Some remain, but haven’t been updated since 2010 or so. A few remain and surprisingly, still tread the same routes. One in particular, continues to photograph the magnificent south western US states, posting iffy blogs, and unenlightening how-to posts. To my surprise and despite being known for his wonderful sandstone landscapes, he now seems devoid of originality and is working his images so hard that they look like HDRs.
In short, I’m forced to deduce that there’s not been much innovation in the recent years and those that can’t manage even that gentle upward curve have packed up their tripods and gone home.
Sure, blogging is an outlet. If you’ve tried it, you’ll know that the biggest difficulty is keeping up the flow. Most would-be bloggers start to run out of topics to cover around post number four and quickly give up. Some persevere and last a few months, or maybe even a year, but the end is usually predictable and arrives in lockstep with declining page views and a general drying up of good ideas.
DS doesn’t run to a schedule save for obvious reasons, the Monday Post. The articles we post are driven by news, availability of information and images and of course, our own personal availability, ability and interest. We like to think that the content DS offers reaches far beyond the usual photo blog and in so doing avoids the declining interest from our contributor(s).
Speaking of which, regular readers will know that Pascal and Philippe live in France and that I live near Cape Town in South Africa. Our other contributors live in places as diverse as West Wales, Scotland, Australia and more recently, Portugal. In addition to our own hands-on experience with Sony, Fuji, Nikon and Leica hardware, they bring their own, vital perspectives and include Hasselblad, MF Leica, more Fuji and Sony as well as Olympus experience.
Work experience plays a role as well. I could hardly have foreseen my years as a Lighting Engineer (before I discovered marketing to be so much more lucrative) would equip me to debate colour gamuts and various other esoteric illuminations with my DS peers. Similarly, on-line work experience and software sales imbue our other contributors with an almost unique communal skill set.
So, there we are. Post no. 600 looms and will doubtless appear around the end of the month. I’m glad you’re reading this and hope you’ll continue to visit as we move towards four figures – at this rate and with the continued support of your visits, that’s not too far away.
In closing – I’m travelling just now and as you read these words should have arrived in Sydney (from Singapore) for a few days of photography, eating, drinking and relaxation. Today’s images are all from Singapore and in no particular genre, just what I and my X100F have seen in a brief four day stop over. There’ll be more next week, no doubt.
Having mentioned our Facebook page in a recent Monday Post, the level of interest in the page has picked up nicely. We could do with a few more Likes though…
This weekend, I’ll be eating humble pie. Literally and figuratively. That’s my karmic punishment for criticising the use artificial intelligence in creative pursuits. Fate has it that an article about IBM’s Chef Watson arrived in my mail box this week and that the idea seemed brilliant: a program that suggests recipes based on ingredients you enter. What shocked me in photographic applications didn’t shock me for cooking. But cooks who have been polishing their technique for decades may feel differently about this 😉
And since I’m turning my coat, why not go all the way and stab the old masters in the back? Petapixel has this interesting article about the negative influence some of our sacred tog-cows may be having on our day to day photography.
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