It is now 7 weeks since I returned to the blogosphere. I had been gone for 5 years.
ANy FIdelity will do started in 2006. Five years of photo-blogging went by until shortly before the Great Tohoku Earthquake, when it stopped.
It was the end of winter 2011, and blogging did not seem to be working for me.
While I had some minor success with a post about a natural attraction close to Osaka (Akame 48 waterfalls), it seemed that other posts fetched little, if any, interest or engagement–aside from what was given by my supportive family and a handful of friends.
This was discouraging, especially because some posts took a great effort to complete, like the mammoth 2010 entry Chasing Fuji, which was about a multi-day trek offering stunning views of Japan’s iconic mountain. (This was one of several hiking posts, the result of synthesizing my photography and hiking interests).
Enthusiasm waned, and it finally ended with the last post on 27 February 2011; the subject was a short snow hike in the mountains near Kyoto.
Over the following years I occasionally mulled over returning to blogging. The main reason I did not was because I felt that it would require tremendous work just to catch up with all the photos I had taken since leaving–there would be heaps of pages to make of all my travels (England, Spain, France, Italy, Thailand, Australia, Dubai, Taiwan…), not to mention the photos taken here in Japan, from hiking trips, street photography, outings to local sightseeing spots, etc.
Nonetheless, while I continued taking pictures, I found less time to process them meaningfully due to several things that were going on in my life.
But along with these ‘distractions’ came a growing realization that time was flying by and that–seriously, now–impermanence (or rather, the need to embrace it) was becoming more and more relevant (I won’t get into why).
Essentially, it seemed pointless to do any photography at all if I was not going to keep it for sharing or posterity, even if it was just for a select few–like family and close friends.
With these points in mind, and some welcome free time during the spring break, I decided that restarting the blog was the best answer to both giving my photography new meaning and leaving a footprint, however small.
Thus, seven weeks ago, I started the task of organizing all the photos that had piled up. The result of this housekeeping was some ‘retro-posting’ (my term for filling up empty years by post-dating entries, like the 2012 trip to France).
Then after putting up several posts (e.g., one about a kimono-clad woman in Kyoto, another featuring street photography in Firenze and yet another one about Sueleymaniye mosque in Istanbul), I was amazed to realize that WordPress had changed so much–it was a far more rewarding and motivating experience than before.
In particular, there was a familiar, but restrained, social-networking quality about it.
In addition, I happened to discover several interesting blogs. The first few were:
They got me started and served to inspire me. Also, there were rewarding interactions with bloggers such as Constantino, Iambadphotographer, Koko, Tam, Timothy and Yuri.
All of these things made for an interesting, thriving, and engaged community that seemed very inviting to anyone who wanted to share the experience. Things were different.
So it was an exciting new world of blogging that I had come back to.
The experience led me to appreciate the value of sharing in a dynamic and instant way while engaging with people all over the planet.
In these last seven weeks approximately 400 photographs in more than a hundred posts have been put up. The blog gained more than 70 followers (there were none before) and I currently follow 120 blogs. Happy days.
There is great inspiration to be had from some WordPress blogs–it can be a thrill going through the Reader to see what people are doing, thinking, and photographing.
I look forward to continuing to discover more blogs while working on my own.
So, a huge thanks to all for helping make my return very rewarding and fun thus far.
To wrap up, below are twelve preferred pictures which were shot and posted in the past 7 weeks. Each one has a personal connection, but I hope they work for viewers on a surface level, too. Care to ask for the story behind one or choose the one you like most? (Click on any photo to open the gallery).