Back from the grave

September 20, 2016


It's been a while - that seems to be a reoccurring theme in my most recent posts, of which there are very few. I've found it hard to love blogging for a while now, it's not that it isn't fun, but the magic is gone. Post after post about SEO optimisation and how to get the most clicks, how to be featured on bloglovin', it's all starting to feel like too much. These days it seems that people* read blogs to learn how to build successful blogs, if you want to blog about something it somehow has to be clickbait or at least a guide of some sort. I tried it (see previous post) and hated every second. I couldn't even be bothered to share the post on social media because it's just not me.

I used to carry my camera with me all the time, in the hopes that I could convince someone I was with to take an OOTD. Always dragging around kilos of kit in a giant handbag. Last autumn I switched to a tiny bag, nothing but my phone and wallet, and let myself enjoy things instead of constantly documenting them. And it's been liberating, but I've missed it. Occasionally I'll wear a nice outfit and think "I'd like to share this" but not really had the inclination to make an effort to take decent photos. Therein lies problem two, I dislike posting photos that aren't of a high enough quality. Sure I've taken photos, disliked them, and never posted them. You see maybe 50% of the material I make. I could post all those photos but I'd probably delete the post later anyway.

I don't really want to expand and become a lifestyle blogger, I'm not convinced my cooking or my beauty routine are anything unique, it would be as boring for me as it would be for you. I don't have anyone around to take my outfit photos so it'll take a lot of convincing for me to take a tripod out (but my self-esteem might be at an all-time low so that's not happening any time soon). I'm not making any promises either way, but I feel a little stuck. I honestly don't know how people manage it after all this time (any tips?), but I'm not dead yet.

Enjoy the swimsuit pics. Brother took me to a mountain stream too cold to swim in and graciously took these photos of me swanning about.

*I don't know who reads these, but they keep showing up to me.


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8 comments

  1. I really miss your blog. I've been following it for a little while now and definitely binged on the archives once or twice, and, in addition to getting a lot of great style inspiration from it, I always found it refreshing that every post wasn't some sponsored pitch for a product...and that, when you did feature a product, at least it was both ethical and interesting. So many blogs just seem to be a mouthpiece for fast fashion now, helping to manufacture trends overnight and just as quickly discard them. I'm not sure I honestly even believe it when some bloggers claim to "love" a product, fruit purses being a case in point. Seriously, bloggers, do every single one of you just totally adore fruit purses all of a sudden??? But, I digress. What I really want to say is this: I started following fashion and lifestyle blogs years ago when they were in their infancy, when it was just people taking pictures of the nifty outfits that they cobbled together from thrift stores and what have you in an attempt to explore and document their own evolving sense of style. I really miss those days, and it saddens me to see the ones who didn't become corporate tools just fall by the wayside because they felt like they couldn't keep up with expectations. I've also seen many of them disappear after some pretty raw and introspective posts about their discomfort with the way that their body has changed over the years and how they feel that they have outgrown the personal style that they worked so hard to hone. As someone who has also struggled with these issues in recent years, I would love to see those bloggers hang in there, keeping talking about it, and keeping working through it. For example, I would very much like to see how ladies on the "twee" end of the fashion spectrum navigate their thirties and beyond with less girlish bodies and dispositions. Anyway, whatever you decide to do with your blog, I totally respect it, not that my opinion matters. It will, however, be missed. Sincerely, A Random Reader from Across the Pond

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    1. I agree with this response and it pretty much summed up what I would comment with.

      I found your blog I think about a year or so ago? I liked your photos and generally just thought your style and life were unique and interesting and different to mine! (I think the main reason why I read blogs, to read about different and interesting people). I don't think your blog needs to conform or be any type of niche specifically, it can be whatever you want it to be about. Even if it's just an outlet for random things, I would still read it because I love your photos and seeing your world I guess (is this coming across creepy? haha I hope it's not and I'm making some sort of sense here). Blogs don't have to be massive money machines generating sources of huge income and I actually start to unfollow when I'm being shilled to every second post. Blogs were originally just about whatever you wanted them to be about, not necessarily a perfectly curated and staged website with the sole purpose of having ~a brand~ and to make money.

      You have a beautiful blog Ron and if anything, it's a fantastic visual diary of your life. It's nice to see you posting again :)

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    2. Thank you so much for this comment Anon, it really means a lot to me. I know I feel like I've stopped reading blogs but after your comment I realised the blogs I followed have slowly disappeared and the only blogs that seem to still be around are the big ones that leave me totally disillusioned. I've toyed with the idea of transitioning to something like a digital magazine, with multiple smaller writers and creators to collectively make something beautiful that isn't just an exercise in bandwagon jumping, but even the thought of organising a task so ambitious gives me palpitations. The reason I fell in love with blogging was the ability to make content I liked, the reason I have stuck with it for so long is all the great responses I get. It's taking an awful lot of willpower but I'm not going anywhere yet. A lot of what's held me back is that I started "dressing up" to take blog photos and it stopped being about clothes I was actually wearing. So I might be a lot less twee, and might wear a lot more black But it's better to be back in black than not back at all (maybe, or maybe I just wanted to reference Amy Winehouse). Anyway, I've digressed quite from from saying thank you, you put into words many of the things I was feeling and have helped me feel motivated to keep going.

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    3. Thanks Jess, it really means a lot, and expect a reader survey soon, I'm going to need to pick people's brains about the sort of content they'd like to see. I'd really love to post more about my travels and general adventures (I have folders full of w̶o̶m̶e̶n̶ interesting photos that don't really match the "fashion blogger" brand, mostly because I'm not in them, and if I am, I'm wearing shit clothes).

      Thanks for following and commenting, it really does mean a lot to me.

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  2. Doesn't matter that you don't update frequently. I still visit and enjoy. :-) Also, doesn't fewer of something make it more rare and valuable? I'm still plugging away at my own blog - posting things I like with no affiliate links or sponsored posts. (Those things aren't necessarily bad, they just weren't good for me).

    Also, I understand about not wanting to expanded to lifestyle blogging. I'm not into (or very good at) those things either. I've settled into blogging what I'm interested in - personal style, wardrobe curation, and the best of whatever the heck I take photos of. I don't have many readers, so it might actually be quite boring, but it makes me happy.

    But most importantly - that's such a lovely classic bathing suit in a lovely setting. It really looks like a magical place, and not unlike some local waterfalls in North Carolina. I don't really have much advice, but I'd say post what makes you happy. And I hope you can feel as cool and admirable as I have always known you are. <3

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    1. Thanks Anna, I love your blog, I really should comment more often, I'm a terrible reader. I really love your still life and food shots (especially the recent autumnal ones) I'd pay to take your photography workshop! It's blogs like yours that convince me to keep going, to see someone doing something they love in all this noise. Your comment really means a lot, it's nice to know I'm not just screaming into a void, haha.

      I always get so jealous seeing photos of the beautiful American countryside (everything from deserts to forests) it just seems so vast and untouched, in the UK so often it feels like every tree is on a register and everything is maintained within an inch of its life.

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  3. Miss you! And your blog. I don't know how people keep up with blogging these days, either - I guess I read more sewing blogs than anything else now, because they are a little less sponsored and a little more genuine, most of the time. But my favorite thing about blogs has always been that they offer a small snapshot into someone's life, and that seems harder and harder to find.

    But I'll always read what you post, even if it is few and far between! This is gorgeous - where is it? And you look great, as usual!

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    1. I miss you too! I feel like I replaced blogging with Instagram because it gave that snapshot, but without the effort. And then that went and became beautiful and curated and then the algorithm took over. The internet was a place to get away from glossy mags and their sameness, and all their ads, and the internet has become glossy mags.

      Now that I've decided to not even try to grow a following, to ignore the numbers, ignore the opportunities to monetise, I feel like I can just be me again. Hopefully means I'll post more too.

      It's in the Jura in France, I always suspected there was something picturesque in the mountains but this summer is the first time someone has agreed to take me.

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Hello, thanks for taking the time to write a comment. I don't always reply (because I'm too busy hiding under a rock) but I read and appreciate every single one!