Tuesday, November 27th, 2007, 8:44 pm
Before I headed to the Caribbean to cover the UltimateBet Aruba Poker Classic I had some business cards printed up. I wanted something with my name and URL on it that I could hand out, so I used VistaPrint and created a nice minimalist card for myself. My name in blue Copperplate caps across the top (I think the font is Copperplate…ehh, who cares) and the address for this site and the UB blog in the lower left corner. There’s a line under my name and beneath that I had to come up with some explaination of what I do. After about six hours of tortured thought I wrote "Writer Blogger Photographer". Now, I never once lied on my resume. I don’t cheat on my taxes (at least nothing really egregious) and in general I try to stick to the truth as much as possible. While I find the idea of living a double life quite appealling, I don’t know that I’m energetic or ambitious enough these days to pull it off.
But I still fibbed a bit on my business card. Because even though I have a camera, that doesn’t exactly mean I’m a "photographer". Any more than the fact that I own a chef’s knife makes me a cook or my set of poker chips means my flat is a casino. But I needed a third thing to put on my card and "photographer" fit very nicely in the space. And it made me feel all happy inside, which counts for something.
So I go to Aruba and I write lots of posts and take lots of pictures. Everyone seemed to like the pictures, which was nice. Far more people talked to me about the pictures instead of what I wrote, but that’s fine. Every day I’d check my Flickr page and see how many people were looking at the pics I took and, y’know, I felt joy.
Took lots of pictures at my reunion and folks seemed to like them, too, and I guess word got out through the Shaler grapevine and my pics are getting lots of views. And, again, I felt joy and stuff. But as I checked this evening to see how many more visitors stopped by, the number at the top of my Flickr page caught my attention. I checked my blog stats and found that since I moved from my old site to this one, I’ve had more visitors to my Flickr page than my blog. Now, this is due in part to people still finding my old site and not making the trip to my new home, but I think there’s another reason. At first I was worried that people just like looking at pictures more than reading blog posts, especially when they’re actually IN the pictures. And naturally that worried a writer/blogger like myself. There’s also the chance that I suck and everyone hates me. But before that thought made me curl up into a ball on the floor another possiblity struck me, one that was much more appealling and, I think, far more likely:
Maybe I’m just a fantastic photographer.
I mean, sure, most of my photos are overexposed (except for those that are underexposed) and lots of my pictures are on the blurry side and from time to time I forget to take the lens cap off–but instead of ignorance or incompetence, maybe these are the signs of an as-yet-unrealized genius? And maybe the people who keep flocking to my Flickr page are merely the vanguard of what will be a devoted world-wide following?
Yes, the logic is impeccable. And I think this is what I’m going to believe until my blog traffic picks up again.
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