It's 2020. Time to make some changes.
It definitely started last year, or maybe the year before. I was editing my thousands of photos from Iceland, and I realized I had learned some crucial techniques. I decided to go back to the beginning and edit ALL of my past photos. With some of them I achieved dramatic results.
I also found a few treasure-troves of photos I had taken, uploaded to my computer, and then promptly ignored entirely. There were some gems in there that now needed to be added into the timeline into the appropriate place.
Oh, the timeline! This is a spreadsheet, which is easy enough to rearrange, but it's also the Etsy Pattern site I had opened the year before to offer digital downloads that didn't expire. I loved the simplicity of the masonry look of it, but you couldn't rearrange the order easily (or at all? I'm not sure if I ever figured this out). I also had been posting sets of 5 photos from each of my categories on Instagram, chronologically, as each new set of 5 was complete. Was I starting both of these over?
This led to concluding that the Etsy Pattern site had done nothing for me except charge me $15 per month, and I could host my own items on my existing website if I put some money into it. I'd have an extra $15 per month once I shut down the other site.
Which in turn led to me taking a look at my existing website. I was pretty proud of it at the time, but I created it in 2009. It LOOKED like it was created in 2009. It was definitely time for an update.
As I began to update my new website with a new native shop function, I realized that the way I had been categorizing my photography made a lot of sense in 2009 with the photos that I had at the time, but some of those categories had not grown at all, and some had expanded to ridiculous proportions. It was time for new categories.
New categories, like the new timeline, meant starting over on some things (lots of things) AGAIN. Those groups of 5 on Instagram, which I had already completely re-posted the week before, would now have to be re-posted again. I'll do it a little more slowly this time, starting today.
My categories went from 16 to 24—many were more specific, and the total number of photos in each category was closer to equal. I ended up re-naming a few of the categories several times as I went (because, at this point, why not start something over AGAIN again...). These still fit nicely into 4 over-arching categories: Animals, Plants, Objects, and Scenery.
Old Category: Charismatic Megafauna
Previously contained mammals, usually large, but there were some small ones in there as well. The small ones were breaking the category. They couldn't be mega-anything. There was also a combination of wild animals and pets / livestock. This has now been split into two categories.
Old Category: Under the Sea
This one had become too large, and so it is now split into two categories: "Swim & Float" (animals that generally don't touch the bottom of the ocean) and "Tide Pool & Seashore" (sessile animals or crawling animals you're likely to find in or around tide pools).
Old Category: Flowers of the Wild
For a long time, this category had only 5 photos. I have now expanded it to include wildflower photos taken in the city (flowers whose garden-version and wild-version would be indistinguishable, even if that particular specimen had been planted by a human). This category also contains wild (or could-be-wild) fruits.
Old Category: Forest Flora
Now split into two categories—one for general plants and one for moss, lichen, and fungus.
Old Category: Bridges, Buildings & Boats
Turns out that's really 3 categories. When I started, it made sense to lump them together, but living in a city with 12 bridges, and visiting many other bridge-heavy cities makes the bridge category pretty big. Buildings are everywhere, too. I don't have that many boat photos, but for some reason I have a handful of truck photos (formerly in the "Everyday Objects" category).
Boats + cars = ways to get from point A to point B.
Old Category: Creeks, Rivers & Oceans
So, like ALL the water ever? Now divided into essentially salt water and fresh water.
Old Category: Into the Sky
Now two categories—one to highlight interesting cloud formations and sunsets, and one for the night sky.
Some of Claude's travel photos are fine: some are fairly typical tourist shots, and some give us a pang of nostalgia, like Claude wearing his hopeful Obama campaign t-shirt in front of the US Capitol building.
Some of Claude's tourist endeavors are downright cringe-worthy. It's not Claude's fault; he picked popular destinations out of guidebooks. Like most tourists, he didn't delve deeply into the historical implications of his vacation destinations. And as amusing as Claude wearing a Mt. Rushmore t-shirt in front of Mt. Rushmore is, Mt. Rushmore itself is not funny at all. And while the Crazy Horse monument does not depict a racist white guy, it still desecrates the very land it was attempting to honor. Whoever's idea that was totally missed the mark.
I am retiring the entire collection of Claude's Travels for now. Claude may travel again in the future, but he will pick his destinations more carefully next time.
Claude likes to travel. Specifically, Claude likes to be a tourist. You may see him in front of a well-known monument, asking if you'll take his picture. Maybe he'll send you a postcard on his next trip. Claude (clawed) was named by Living in the Past, after another traveling cat in her family. Claude is drawn with marker, colored digitally, and poses in front of real (photographs of) popular tourist destinations.
Universal truths by some of the greatest thinkers and souls of our time. I do not own these likenesses.
Digitally enhanced silk screen prints: silk screened onto fabric using stencils or traditional screening methods, then scanned and manipulated using a graphics program.
Scribbled lines with black permanent marker on white paper, scanned and colors altered using a graphics program. These were fun to create, and I love the final look of them, but I do not own any of these characters or likenesses.
These were originally painted as answers to a visual questionnaire in September 2009.
Mayor Sam Adams
This one answered the question "What's in your wallet?" In addition to being the actual mayor of Portland, Mayor Sam Adams appeared as "Sam" the aide to the character of the mayor of Portland in the TV series "Portlandia." Sam is no longer Mayor, and his twitter account is defunct.
These pieces were tailored specifically to work with on-demand print fulfillment services, such as Café Press and RedBubble. These ones are all Outdoor School-themed.
I don't feel like it's appropriate to erase the existence of this art completely. It makes more sense to me to call out the problematic aspects in this blog (see topic: Out with the Old). I have made mistakes. I will own them. I have learned how to do better, and I will continue to seek opportunities to learn.
A quick Christmas craft for my friends' stockings. I found book cover images (front, back, and spine wherever possible) and printed them onto card stock, then glued them onto tiny sticky note pads. Unfortunately, using the sticky notes later doesn't really work, but they're meant to be Christmas ornaments so it doesn't matter.
Choosing which books to make was easy for friends who have GoodReads accounts. I simply sorted their shelves by their own ratings, and made ornaments of their 5-star favorites.
The Harry Potter books, of course, have wonderful covers that wrap all the way around.
For friends without GoodReads accounts, I had to work a little harder to choose appropriate books. For some I had to remember books that had been brought up in conversation in the past, and for others, I had to guess based on personality. Luckily I ended up guessing correctly most of the time.
I have to admit, all those little books hanging on the tree at our Christmas party were pretty cute. I might just have to make some for myself. I think I have a few more sticky notes around here somewhere...