Summer has pretty much arrived; it’s time to stuff all the winter things into big, transparent plastic bags and vacuum them into thin, portable slabs to be stored under the bed. The windows are open all the time, and the world outside has graduated from the slimy spring moss into a drier, hotter state. Though I sometimes feel burdened by niggling details and obligations to other people these days, I’m trying to use my mornings for more productive activities than just sitting around reading Internet articles by and about various idiots. I’ve dug out my old book and am making some progress in re-writing it, something it needs desperately as my writing style of yore left much to be desired. It’s also good to get out from underneath the growing pile of unpublished photographs that has been piling higher and higher in recent months. I’m still not finished with posting the photos from Spain, and selecting various photos for competitions has made the unholy mess even harder to untangle. I was thinking of using weekends for photo processing, but then the weather is so nice I find myself out shooting even more photos to add to the pile. The obvious answer is to be more picky about which photos I bother keeping, and only post the ones I like the most and throw out the rest, but I have a packrat’s view on the subject and always feel like I might be throwing out a great shot that nobody, including myself, happens to be able to recognize as such.
I try to keep things simple because I am not good at organization, but simplicity is deceptively hard to attain. Taking this website for example; I’ve got it set up so that all I need to do is write and publish in WordPress to update, but many things are going on in the background that need updating. The WordPress version is out of date. The film site is way out of date and needs a complete overhaul. I’ve read that many people don’t consider someone a “real photographer” unless they have a dedicated domain called “JohnDoeImages” or “SallySomethingPhotography” with a suitably confusing flash interface and cryptic titles, but I can’t bring myself to actually do something like that when so many examples I’ve seen suck so badly. I’ll stay with Flickr for now, I think. I’ve got a few dozen photos in the Getty Collection through it, and I’ve sold a few others via Flickr, including one in The New Yorker, so it’s not completely ineffective.
Speaking of professional trappings, I walked into a camera equipment shop the other night (the one where you step down a few steps to enter; you know the one I mean), and the clerk walked up to me and then right past me to help the next person who had entered. When I finally got his attention, I asked about negative scanners, which they said they didn’t stock. He glanced at the camera hanging around my neck, the little Panasonic LX3, and actually snorted in a derisive fashion. I’d thought that this kind of thing only happened in old Fawlty Towers episodes, but apparently it happens in real life as well.
In other news, as nothing seems to be happening with the Ramblers, I’ve decided to consider a summer gig with some other local musicians, travelling around the island on weekends to play in a series of bars. We got together last night to see what was what, and it was pretty dismal. The only bright spots were when we took off on our own in between practicing the songs we were supposed to be playing. Still, I suppose there’s hope. Though it’s only been a few months since my last trip, I really wouldn’t mind a few days somewhere else. This is, of course, Paul Theroux‘s fault.