Blogs have been around since the early 1990’s and evolved from the online diary (or journal). Nowadays, there are many different types of blogs that explore a seemingly endless variety of topics. Although there are many other options online for sharing information such as social media, videos, sound files, tutorials, images, etc. Blogs continue to remain popular for both those that post them and the followers who read them. The frequency for blog entries can vary with some blogs posting on a daily basis, while others have a posting schedule that is more irregular or that post less frequently, for example, on a once a week or a monthly schedule. All of the variables involved with a blog, largely depend on the individual or group of users who contribute to, and run, the blog. This includes the subject matter, topics explored, the length of each blog entry, the posting schedule, and the overall success and popularity of the blog. All this will likely stem from the amount of time a person or persons can contribute to their blog and what their interests are as well as if they have found a community of people online with similar interests that follow them. The reasons behind why people choose to blog can produce a response that is just as varied as the number of people who have a blog.
Today, I wanted to talk about this blog and my reasons behind having it. What is its purpose? The blog here at sarahhawleyart.com was born out of a project from the Photography program I was taking in September 2020. It was initially set up during the course to be a business photography website, but as an artist approaching photography as a medium to create in, and not as a tool to primarily make a living from, I had other ideas. Once the course was completed I revamped the website a little, making the necessary changes to convert my website into a space for my fine art photography first and to draw in business second, if at all. For me, the art and creativity should always come first and I wanted my website and blog to reflect that. I chose to continue contributing to the blog I started from when I was still in school, because I realized that after weighing all the other options, this blog was the best fit for me, my schedule and what I was able to dedicate to this project as far as my time and the content I could produce. In this case the blog includes both text and imagery. This blog is a monthly project that continues to push me to practice photography, to improve on my writing skills and to share with others.
I wanted a place where I could share my knowledge, ideas, experiences, information and art with those who have similar interests. I wanted to provide material on the blog that would be educational, interesting, and relatable. It is my hope that when people read my blog they get something from it. I want it to be beneficial to other individuals as well as myself. The blog helps me to stay dedicated and disciplined to continue to create primarily in photography. I also see the blog as a way to give back and educate others as some of my favourite photographers have done. I hope that followers of the blog will learn from my experiences and the topics I discuss.
The blog is also intended to try to form or build a community of people. To draw people to my website and to generate content to share on social media, which in turn is an attempt to try and draw new followers from other places online such as Twitter, Facebook and Instagram among other places online to find this blog.
My blog focuses primarily on my photography projects, but I also discuss the issues and topics that commonly occur among all creatives no matter what media you choose to create in. I try to be as inclusive as possible while not drifting too far from the main theme of the blog and risk losing my focus. My blog posts are usually brief in nature with about a 5 minute read and each post is often accompanied with a series of images that I have taken with my camera. I post about once a month and my photography ranges in subject matter depending on the theme of the blog post. This way, I am not demanding too much from my audience or myself. Viewers can take a few moments once a month to read my blog while enjoying a cup of coffee, and I can take a whole month to plan and organize the content of my next blog post.
I think this was a necessary reflection that clarifies what my blog is. I think it is important to stop every once in a while and evaluate or re-evaluate what you are doing and why you are doing it. This exercise helps to see if I am still focused on the main theme or if I have drifted away from it, and to see if there is a need to change course, whether that means to make a change to get back on track or if a change in another direction is what is needed. It is also important to outline all this information to your followers so that it is clear what your intent is and what the blog will focus on, to avoid confusion or disappointment.
To date, I have covered a range of topic, issues and different projects on this blog. I want to thank all of the people who have supported me, this website, and the blog, especially the followers - for without you, I would be writing to nobody. This post marks my 40th blog post on this site and I hope there are many more to come. Although I must admit, as I continue add posts to this blog, it is becoming increasingly more and more difficult to come up with new topics and material to write about. Having said that, please feel free to comment below and to share what topics you think I should cover on this blog.