It’s been a while since I’ve posted on the blog but that doesn’t mean I’ve stopped making images or thinking for that matter. I have material for a couple of VLOGs, although I hesitate to call them that, they are more accurately personal video diaries to my mind, ones that I don’t mind sharing. There’s a lot of very well executed VLOGs on YouTube at the moment with exceptionally high production values hence my hesitation. There’s even a newly formed Facebook group celebrating UK landscape videos/VLOGs on YouTube.
I see in fact that it was October 20th that I last put electronic pen to digital paper, when I reflected on the phenomenon that was Ophelia,. Which isn’t as long a gap as I’d thought but long enough. I have made a token effort to process the images from the last five weeks and a selection have appeared on my Instagram feed and on my Facebook account. Not my Flickr account though. I seem to have completely fallen out of the habit of posting on Flickr, even though it’s the account I’ve had for the longest and is after all designed for photographers (allegedly, but that’s another story).
When I look back at what I’ve posted I will no doubt find that those I’ve processed so far are those that have instant appeal. The more thoughtful photographs will follow in due course and these will be the most fulfilling for me personally. As they are also those that are less likely to have that instant appeal they may not make it to Instagram at all. I find it amusing that I happily post anything that interests me to my blog, which is my more “grown-up” social media outlet yet hesitate to share the more challenging images to Instagram or even Facebook where the only people I interact with are people I know and in the main, are people I have met in the real world. It seems that my social media usage is falling into three buckets almost:
Instagram: Instant hit – an ego boost?
Facebook: sharing my best work primarily with my friends
Blog: sharing what I like, what I feel and think.
Arguably, this blog is my more honest face on the social media merry go round.
Throughout 2017 I have been following the “365” exploits of Maxwell Law, a member of the same camera club as myself whom I interact with mainly via Facebook, email and very occasionally the telephone. This has inspired me to do the same in 2018 and I’ve already applied to join the Flickr 365 group to which he belongs who hopefully will have space for me in the new year. I really do carry a camera, and not just a mobile phone camera, everywhere but whilst I use it regularly I do not use it every day. It will be interesting to see what being a member of a 365 group does for my photography. Will it reenergise my photography, will it become a chore, will I end up photographing the garden in the dark to grab that days shot? Will I last the year? A month? The first week? They don’t call them a challenge for nothing and I am at least going into this with my eyes open. It’s possibly the most social thing I will have attempted in recent years and no doubt I will cogitate on the subject over the next sixty-three days as we count down to 2018 and may even post a few words on the subject here.
Storm Ophelia is history now and whilst those worst affected are still dealing with its consequences for the majority of us thoughts are turning to Storm Brian. As a nation we’ve always been obsessed with the weather it seems to me but just recently it’s become a mania. Mind you, I will long remember walking out of the cottage door on Anglesey last Monday and sensing an eeriness I’ve not felt before. There was a smell of bonfires and tobacco in the air, dark skies and a tangible feeling of oppression. Add to that the curiously quiet streets in Menai Bridge town and it really did have that other-worldly feel. Then the sky turned red and the sun orange. It was this latter event that caused the penny to drop; Saharan dust and ash from the forest fires in Spain and Portugal creating both the optical and aural phenomena. Awareness didn’t remove the eery feeling though and it was almost a relief when mid afternoon the winds started to rise and the sky and air to clear. I recorded a gust of 45mph with my anemometer before deciding it was time to lock the door and settle down for the evening with a good book.
The following day we crossed back to the mainland into Snowdonia where fallen trees blocking roads and downed power lines were a very visible reminder of the storm. To think that we only caught the edge of it on Anglesey and then to see what impact that had on the landscape really brought home how bad things had been over in Ireland.
One thing that the storm did change for us was the day we chose to visit Ynys Llanddwyn, or Llanddwyn Island, a small tidal island off the west coast of Anglesey although I will write a separate blog for that in due course but for now a cheeky drone picture, above, will hopefully whet the appetite.
For now though my thoughts are with those who are dealing with the aftermath of the worst storm recorded on Ireland.
I last posted on the 26th September, a day before leaving for a few days in the Lakes. A lack of wifi at the place we stayed kept me from my blog and then the arrival of grandson number four and the wedding of daughter number three continued to keep me AWOL until this morning. I have some images to share, some footage for a blog post or two and some thoughts to share too. But not just yet!
One benefit of a lack of wifi is that I got some reading done and as my birthday also fell within this two week window there were some new things to read too; no doubt some of what I read will influence some of my ramblings in the coming weeks. A couple of new gadgets found there way into my possession as well so the inner child in me was also catered for.
I did post a few images to Facebook, Instagram and even Twitter over the two weeks and once again the benefits of the Fuji’s in-built wifi and Snapseed on my iPad were well appreciated. I’ve just looked at the RAW files from the last couple of weeks and whilst there won’t be an avalanche of new material there are some nice images that I’m looking forward to processing properly over the coming week or three.
So, I leave you with a few images from the last fortnight and the promise of more posts to come. I’m away for a few days in Anglesey next week, a place I’ve never visited so I am looking forward to that immensely.