Ever since having "retirement" forced on me when I was laid off three months before my 65th birthday, I have maintained a website, been active on flickr & facebook, and started this blog. But I am beginning to wonder exactly what I expect from those activities.
The host for my website charges a yearly fee but the site gets very little, if any, traffic. With flickr, I am still paying the yearly "professional" fee to keep my stream free of advertisements. This blog & facebook, however, cost nothing other than a little time (and I have a fair amount of that). So, today I began to wonder why spend the money if I am not doing anything as a working professional anymore? On a fixed income, it seems a little stupid. Dropping things like a website & flickr would not affect anything I am doing. Now dropping flickr, I could always come back and set up a free stream and let the ads show up.
About the only thing I would like to do, is a few exhibitions locally and review almost 40 years worth of analog and digital images to do a few books. To that end, here are the three books I have completed in the last month after a couple of years of review.
(Can be seen at http://blur.by/XwT6oy)
(Can be seen at http://blur.by/1Cx86Rd)
(Can be seen at http://blur.by/1wo3XyQ)
Marketing of myself is one of my biggest failings. I have always had trouble treating photography as a "business". But without marketing and treating this effort as business, I am just pouring money down a black hole. I am sure many of you have seen "great photographers" and you look at their work and say "what?" Even looking at what I consider some of the greats, I see images in retrospectives of their work that make me question why they used a particular image.
But such is life.
I have bought copies of each of these books for my own book collection that someday will be passed on the my heirs. Maybe they will become one of a kind editions!! But, more than likely, they will be something my kids and grandkids can look at and say that I had a good time taking photographs.
In the meantime, I need to continue to go back through the rolls of film and the digital images for photos that speak to me in some way and that I want to either make part of a book or do a print for posterity.
To me, if the image is not on something tangible (book or print), then it is a waste. And, trust me, I have thousands of images sitting on external drives or in a cabinet that are really a waste.
So I am at a turning point. I really need to see what kind of return I am expecting by keeping up a website, or posting to flickr, or even posting to this blog. Then I can focus my efforts where they make the most sense.
As always, make a comment!! Let me know what you think! Until next time, keep on shooting...