Monthly Archives: May 2011

About feeds in blog posts

I choose to publish full text feeds on my site because I like to read blogs on a feed reader (aggregator) and I assume that other people like it too.

Let’s face it, the internet is huge and full of interesting things. There is no time to look at everything. That’s one of the reasons why people use feed readers. It’s a convenient application that allows you to read your favorite sites like a newspaper. You can be having your coffee in the morning and browsing what’s new in your circle of interests, easy!

As a rule I don’t subscribe to blog feeds that don’t publish the whole post. Why? Mainly because my internet attention span is very short. The only exceptions are blogs that have genuine interest to me AND publish a photo and a good part of the post.

A photo is crucial. It’s the hook. If I like the photo I’m likely to click on the article to see the whole post. But this is very rare in sites that don’t publish their full text feed (RSS or Atom). Most of them just let the Content Management System (WordPress, Blogger, etc..) publish an insignificant snippet of their post.

This is a shame because I quit following lots of talented and interesting people just because they cannot compete with all the other talented and interesting people in my “internet newspaper” that publish the whole thing.

I think people do this because they are afraid of republishing without their consent. Also, because they’re not used to use a feed reader.

My advice is, publish your full text feeds. Don’t be afraid to let others enjoy your work in whatever form they prefer. Odds are they love it and they will read it if you let them do it their way.

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Photo Dudette Bonus Photo of the Month

Photo Dudette Bonus Photo

Photo by: Gisela Francisco | License: Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

Bonus Photo of the Month is a photo made by me that you can use as you like under the Creative Commons Attribution Licence, which means you can use it for whatever commercial or non commercial purposes as long as you mention that it was made by me.

This photo was taken as I was passing by a florist at my old neighborhood, in Rue Cler. It’s a simple bunch of orange, tea, and yellow roses in a jar with a tag and the prices in french (euros). Enjoy!

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Project 365

I take a photo a day as part of my Project 365. It helps me stay connected to the camera and my surroundings and forces me to produce photos even through dry creativity spells.

#243 - Self

It’s also a great way to look back at my year, once it’s concluded. I’m in my forth year and every time the year ends I look back at the photos an wonder how did it go so fast. I always remember doing what I’m doing in the pictures like it was yesterday.

310/365

Sure, you have to be a little crazy to commit yourself to taking one photo EVERY day but once you start you don’t want to stop. It helps if you have a drive to document your everyday life, to save all you can from the present. I have that since I was five so I’m OK. Hehe.

40/365

At first I couldn’t wrap my head around the “burden” so I made a trial of taking 31 photos in 31 days.
I loved the result very much but it was hard. It compelled me to be creative because, lets face it, our lives aren’t always consecutive photo opp moments.
But it’s my life, I should be true to what’s going on, or not going on. Sometimes I just had to take a picture of my cat and be happy I have one!

142/365

At this point, after four non consecutive years, I just cut myself some slack and skip some days. I prefer to do that than to put up a sub par photo. But I’m starting to think that is just an excuse not to be creative and it’s making me reevaluate my laziness.

#239 - Happy whatcha-ma-call-it

In this post I chose some examples of photos I wouldn’t have taken if I never started the Project.

Photos by: Gisela Francisco | All Rights Reserved

(technorati claim: RNE3BYFN9XTS)
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Rabbit Running – Creative Commons of the Week

This is a recurring topic where I pick a photo from the Creative Commons library and feature it as Creative Commons of the Week.

Photo by: Fred Thomas | License: Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

Love the little rabbit running in the field, the monotone colors, the textures and the shallow depth of field.

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People Watching

People watchingIt took me sometime to point the camera at people.
I had mini moo business cards made just in case I had to justify what I was doing to someone. They have my name, phone number, e-mail and the portfolio website.
One of the reasons is that I live in Paris and I don’t speak French. At least not good enough French to justify to an angry person what am I doing taking their picture without permission.
People watching
The other reason is that I’m horribly self-conscious.
While taking pictures of people I cheat most of the time. In the metro, for instance, I tend to take pictures of people in the next carriage or in the opposite running train. That way I make sure I’m not going to be confronted by a mean little old Parisian lady.
Also, I feel like I gave them life in a way. Not to the people themselves but to the characters that appear frozen in my viewfinder. They didn’t exist in my world nor in yours. Now they do and you see a glimpse of their imaginary lives. In this instance, I prefer to have only a few seconds to take the picture. This photo becomes a picture of a volatile moment captured.

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My Photo Equipment – Part I

Sony Alpha a200I use an old Sony Alpha A200. It’s an entry-level digital SLR and I got it two years ago as a birthday surprise gift from my father.
I was saving to get a Nikon d80, which is also an entry-level camera but after I got the Sony I decided to wait and buy a more professional camera later.

I use the Sony Alpha A200 almost exclusively with a Minolta AF 50 F1.7 vintage SLR lens. It gives me about the same image on the viewfinder as 75mm on a 35mm SLR camera.
I bought this lens on ebay for about €100. I love it because of the shallow depth of field given by the F1.7 setting.

Almost every week I read reviews of medium format cameras, analyze photos made by those cameras, convince myself that it’s probably not the cameras used that are making such photos and read opinions about why I should NOT buy one. Apart from the price tag, I mean.

This is my quest, I guess. Understand how to make the photos I want to make. Learn what is it that makes them special. I know it’s not the camera. At least, not everything is the camera. That is why I use my old Sony Alpha A200 with my second hand scratchy lens. Because I believe that it’s not the camera. It’s about the search, about the knowledge and about the passion. Or else I would just give up.

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