Thursday, August 15, 2013

How Instagram has reinvigorated my photography

The main reason why most blogs die off is the lack of an audience. By that count, it's a wonder I've kept this blog going for so long... (albeit with rather infrequent updates)
Fortunately, I love photography enough to keep going!

Of course, even the deepest well will run dry some day, so I recently sought to find better ways of sharing my photography. I first tried porting this entire blog over to Tumblr because it has social network functionality built-in, and then discovered to my disappointment its lack of SEO. This blog completely trumps it, and I suspect Google's ownership of Blogger has to do with it too.




I considered making better use of Flickr, where I already have an account, but even with the recent upgraded interface and 1TB of storage, I feel reluctant to put too much energy into a platform that doesn't seem to be drawing in new users. It didn't help that their app isn't available in my region for my iPod Touch 5, my main media sharing and consumption device. (I use a Blackberry Z10 as my main communications device)

Then came Instagram. I was actually asked by my wife to set up an account so I can follow and "like" her photos on the service. I dutifully did so and ignored the platform for a while, until the start of July.
I can't remember why I started taking an interest in the first place, but since then I've been a very active member of the community. Initially, I didn't have any specific goal for the platform. I thought of it as an extension of my current photo sharing on Facebook, Blogger and Tumblr.
Actually, this isn't my first posting on Instagram. The real original has been cleared out because it was a random shot that doesn't quite merit the real estate!
But after I started exploring the platform further, I started to see its potential as my main platform for sharing photos. Firstly, it doesn't require me to write much. While I do enjoy writing, it is time-consuming and takes time away from the main purpose of my blog -- photography. Secondly, there is an active community on the platform who are engaged and always exploring new content. Thirdly, you do get a lot of feedback in the form of 'likes' and comments, though people are unlikely to give any criticism.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Hotel Musashiya at Hakone (1)

Was in Hakone, Japan, recently for a short holiday, and I stayed two nights in a ryokan with a 145-year history. The deco was decidedly old-school, but it was cosy, the service staff was friendly and the food was great. I like this type of ryokan because they just feel more authentic to me.

The view from their open air onsen on the top floor (5th storey) was great too, as it faces Lake Ashi.

Official website (Japanese only):
http://6348.info/

English website (Japanican):
http://www.japanican.com/hotels/shisetsudetail.aspx?st=4321003

 
Musashiya Hakone food
 
Musashiya Hakone food
 
Musashiya Hakone food
 
Musashiya Hakone food
 
Musashiya Hakone food
 
DSCF2639a
 
Musashiya Hakone food
 
Musashiya Hakone food
 
Musashiya Hakone food
 

More to come…

This blog will continue to be updated

After struggling to make my Tumblr searchable to Google for the past week,  I have decided it’s still not the time to stop updating this blog. So it shall live on!

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Final post

I have decided to move my blog to my Tumblr, as I find it much easier to use. I will still keep this blog online, until Google decides to shut down Blogger. Thanks to everyone who has visited this blog in the last five years! I hope you have found something interesting here. Cheers! Zhaowei