I’ve been writing this blog for a long time now – since some time back in 2007. And from the beginning I was determined that the content should all be original.
I’ve probably posted twice a week on average, and although I have quoted other people’s writing, I don’t think it’s ever really been the main heft of any blog post. As for photos, I’ve certainly used screen shots, but I can only think of a couple of pictures that I’ve taken from the web for purely illustrative purposes, which I don’t think is bad considering a quick check of the blog’s media library suggests I’ve used over two and a half thousand images.
When I started out, phones didn’t include cameras and although I owned a digital camera, I didn’t always include a photo. Then I started to make sure there was at least one image per post, and gradually the photos became more and more important.
Unsurprisingly, I think my photography also got a little better as time went on, not least because it became so common for everyone to carry a phone camera and I got less self-conscious about pausing to take pictures in public.
My photographs and my poems have quite a bit in common: in the main, they both shy away from people, and tend to be vignette style, rather than story-oriented. They also both focus on the natural world and, while the photos tend to be floral in subject-matter, the poems have to be carefully curated to avoid there being too much floral language.
Actually, though, it’s the shape of the photos that made me start to write this post. For quite a while, now, I’ve made sure all the full photos (not the headers, the ones in the post body) are sized at a ratio of 4:3. I crop them if necessary and re-size them so they’re usually 1,000 pixels wide and 750 tall.
Of course, the photos are automatically shaped like that when I take them, but what I mean is that I’ve got quite good at shooting images that use a 4 by 3 space well. The buddleia and the fuchsia above are both examples that would have worked without any adjustments, although I admit I cropped them in a fraction to tighten the framing.
The problem is that I’ve just started an Instagram account and have decided that, because of the way the app works, I really need to start cropping my photos to a square, to be sure that they display to advantage.
I think I am going to have to re-learn everything I thought I knew about photography: what has become second nature doesn’t lend itself to this new standard, as I think is clear from the best crop I managed on that last photo:
Anyway… if you fancy looking at more of my photos and re-visiting some of my poetry, do come and find me on Instagram. The feed is very new and currently mostly floral, but who knows how it will develop as time goes on.