When I was working on my portfolio website a few weeks ago, the question propped up whether besides the portfolio I also should have a personal blog.
If I was a professional photographer, the answer would be a no-brainer. Every professional absolutely should have a blog for works sharing, marketing, clients presentation and in general improving his personal brand. But what in case you’re a hobbyist just like me? Will it be worth the effort and time spent? Wouldn’t it be sufficient to create a profile on social media platforms as Twitter, Facebook or Instagram?
Today I’m convinced the answer is a resounding ‘YES’. Even being an amateur photographer, a personal blog is an absolute must have. After all, blogging is by far the easiest way to share your passion with community and the best tool to assist in growing as an artist.
The simple reasons why I jump to this conclusion are:
The era of static photography websites is finished. The audience is expecting to receive more information from a photographer than only an overview of images. A photographer must be able to share his ideas, reflect his personality and promote his work. A blog provides a medium to talk about yourself and the things that keep you busy. In the end, people don’t connect with images. People connect with other people. For your website visitors, your photo’s will be more interesting if people learn to know more about you as a person and the human being that’s behind the lens.
Escape from the social media ghetto. You can present your work on all kinds of social media like Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr or Twitter. However, the trick is not to become a slave to social media. Once you’re locked into their platform, you start to lose control of the work you’ve posted, and you’re restricted in the ideas you’re able to share. I’m also present on some of those platforms. But I try to limit the number of contributions and shares. And it pleases me to notice that some of my pictures receive appreciations from friends and are shared. But after a while they all get lost in the clutter. I don’t want to give the impression that a photographer’s presence on social media channels is unimportant, but to my opinion a personal website and blog are better tools to show the soul of my work to the community.
Blogging is easy fun. Blogging is really-really easy, at least when you do have some topics to write about. Anyone who’s able to write an email, should also be able to start up a blog. And blogging is so much fun. It’s pleasing to go out in nature and shoot, to walk through a city’s backstreets and capture life, to meet a stunning model and portray her. But all this just becomes much more fun if you immediately have an audience to showcase it for. Blogging is easy fun in every way.
Blogging improves your skills, helps other people and makes this world a better place. A blog is less static and restrictive than a just a portfolio. I already mentioned that to my opinion the days of static portfolios are passed. A blog allows the photographer to experiment with art daily, take some risks and see what resonates with the audience. The possibility of experimenting will result in a serious improvement of technical photography skills. Furthermore, your writing and communication skills will be improved. Blogging brings inspiration and motivation and it makes you start to think about who you are and who you like to become. It enables you to share information and knowledge and might be very helpful to other people. And finally, when having a blog, you also have a voice. You can spread out all things you like and don’t like – without any social media control – and maybe change the world.