Do You Blog To Photograph Or Photograph To Blog?

Do you make photographs just for the sake of having something new to share on your blog?

Or do you blog when you’re ready, to share the photographs you’ve already made?

Mostly, when I’m out making photographs myself, I’m not thinking about this blog. I just want to find beautiful compositions, and enjoy whichever camera is currently in my hand.

Blogging comes later, sharing experiences and thoughts of and around photography, with a few of my own photos to break up the text and hopefully enrich the blog a little visually.

I’ve often heard other photography bloggers comment that they have committed to a certain schedule of new posts, then feel they have to take and share photos, just for the sake of having something new to post.

Which I don’t feel is ever going to be the best place to start in making your best work.

If your photography blog is predominantly about sharing your best photos, then surely it’s better to wait until you next have such photos you’re proud of and keen to share?

But then what if this only happens once every fortnight, every month, every three months?

Is it better to post often with something, just to remind your readers you’re still there?

I don’t find myself with this dilemma, because as I said, this blog is not purely a showcase for my own images, it’s a place to share some of my thoughts and adventures, and encourage you to share yours too.

I’m quite happy to delve into my archives for an image to illustrate a post, and don’t feel I always need a brand new photo to be able to publish a new post.

Where do you stand on this?

If you blog yourself, do you ever share a less than spectacular image or two – something “good enough” – just to have something to share? Or are you happy to wait until you have something you’re really proud of, and then post?

As a blog reader, would you rather bloggers shared only their best stuff when they’re ready, even if that’s far less frequent? Or post more regularly, even if sometimes (perhaps even often) what they share is far from their best work?

Please let us know in the comments below (and don’t forget to tick the “Notify me of new comments via email” box to follow the conversation).

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28 thoughts on “Do You Blog To Photograph Or Photograph To Blog?”

  1. I’m a crap photographer, but if I were to take it seriously, I’d probably photograph to blog instead of ‘waiting for inspiration or good pictures to appear’. At least that’s how I feel about my writing. Great question. Thanks for this!

  2. I started sharing a few photographs I already had taken on my blog, gained a handful of followers, got walloped with a Discover featuring and a sudden influx of hundreds of followers, started trying to take ‘photos to blog’ to fulfil and maintain the new audience, got massively off track with what photography was to me, had a bit of a moment about it all, then a period of enthusiasm rediscovery doing all sorts of different stuff and have returned to doing what I like and sharing a picture every now and then. And have returned to a handful of visitors whenever I can be bothered to post, even though, on the face of it, there are still many hundreds of ‘followers’.

    Does tend to be recent photos, although I do always strip my published image files of EXIF info, so it is actually irrelevant and unknown to viewers if the shot is new or not. I do post much older work sometimes, just don’t say.

    1. I remember the Discover, because that’s how I found you!

      I would like to have a more genuine count of followers too, though I do go through now and then and remove any that are obviously spam or just hoping that I’ll follow them back.

      I really like that the more the years go by, the more of a body of work you have to dip into when sharing photos!

      1. I have been delving into the archival hard drives recently (and tutting to myself about how rubbish I have always been at being organising pics into some system–ANY ‘system’ actually!) ‘Body of work’ is a bit of a posh name for it but yes, it’s a lot of time’s worth now.

      2. The eternal dilemma of sorting photos! I think there’s basically three ways –

        – by subject, eg use tags or keywords. I do this in Flickr and it makes it so much easier to find stuff made by a specific camera or of a specific subject.

        – by date, have a folder per month, then a folder per year a level up and so on. I do this on my HD(s) as when I started I couldn’t figure out a better alternative like tags.

        – no order whatsoever, just purely as they come off the memory cards!

  3. I’m more of a storyteller than a photographer so my pictures are meant to be supportive. Since I try to blog every day, I’m usually on the prowl for good pictures and try to keep that in mind. However, I occasionally have a picture that I just like and want to share. Those days give me a break from thinking and allow me to just write something short.

    1. Photographs can be a fantastic addition to a good story. Or they can be the story, with or without supportive text.

      I do like the One Frame posts once in a while, one picture, with no words. I think it gives the blog a change of pace, and like you say, it gives me a break from thinking (and writing) too much now and then.

      1. I love photography and how versatile photos can be in storytelling. As you say, photos can tell the story or simply be visual aids in the process. I keep threatening to take a class or workshop to improve my skills. One of these days!!

  4. I’m not sure where I fit best. I bought a camera to take garden shots. Then started capturing other things that interested me. At some point, I realized the images had stories, so I started blogging to tell the stories.

  5. I don’t blog…
    When reading blogs, I do appreciate when the writer has a minimum quality of pictures and texts before posting, rather than a “stream of consciousness” approach.

    1. You mean stream of consciousness in terms of pictures, or text? Or both? I really don’t get the blogs that post every picture from every photoshoot. Who gains from that? Just share your best 5%, even 1% and we’ll all think you’re a much better photographer!

      1. I think people can do either, or both… one blog in particular that I used to read has become quite off-topic, as the author decided to just blog about his diet, or his political views… none of which interested me.
        And I’ve also seen blogs like you mention, where people have a lot of output but most of the pictures just aren’t interesting.
        I forgot to mention, by the way – the main picture in this article is especially beautiful…

      2. Yes I think it’s dangerous when you start blogging about a fairly specific topic then go off tangent too much, and too often, and those following because of a shared interest in the original topic might not be interested and leave. The flip side of that is that I think it’s important to remember blogs are individual things, places we can share ourselves, we don’t need to always write in a technical or emotionless way. We can still stay within range of the original topic and be interesting. Or at least try to be!

        Oh thanks about the photo, I really appreciate that Chris!

  6. I started my blog in order to have an excuse to go back to pictures that elicit an emotion in me, and also to share stories about those travels … so I guess I blog because of photography. Although admittedly, now that I’ve been at it for several weeks, I crave the opportunity to take more photos from inspiring places so that I can share them. Two sides of the same coin in a way? Or the same side of two different coins.

    1. You’re off to a flying start with your blog, well done! I think really it’s part of the same cycle, blogging feeds photography which feeds blogging, and round it goes.

  7. Hmmm .. I write what interests me and either take new pictures or use old ones. The pictures usually illustrate the text. But equally, sometimes I have one or a few pictures I want to share (seals underwater for example). So a bit of both. Only two or three pictures to a post usually. Terse, moi?

  8. I rather like to read or see stories, when a photograph tells something, but I notice I don’t follow much pure or professional blogs of photographers, not few times I notice the are travelling not to see a place but to try their equipment in them and, which is totally valid as is their way to earn their life, to have a portfolio to sell. I used to post rather about memories, and that was the importance of the photo rather than the photograph itself.

    1. Yes, the photographs we have as a family that are most previous are certainly not ones that are technically great, or made on high end gear. They were just a memory captured.

  9. Perhaps I come in a little late on this one Dan but I started to write my blog when I embarked upon a 12 month project of shooting at 35mm.

    The blog was essentially to be a journal of that year but I found that the writing became as enjoyable as the outings, so have kept it going.

    I have also found myself making notes, to serve as a reminder for any subsequent blog, a reminder of my thoughts at any particular moment.

    1. Thanks Andy, yes I think the original purpose of a blog (weblog) was an online diary of some kind, which you could also share with others if you wished. I like the way we can tag with a blog to be better organised, and then link back to previous posts to create a more connected set of posts than if they were just sequential with no other way to navigate between them.

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