Discover Challenge: Flaneur

Sometimes I like to think of myself as a flaneuse (the feminine form of flaneur), wandering the city streets with my camera and observing urban life, creatively capturing the essence of each scene as I feel it rather than simply recording faithfully a purely factual representation of what I see before me.

It’s my kind of street photography, finding interesting subjects in common-or-garden situations, everyday Londoners (permanant and temporary) whether at work, rest, or play… 🙂

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Here are a small selection from my archives, giving a flavour of everyday London life – local bobbies on the beat in Stratford, a drink and a smile in a beer garden in Leytonstone, selfies by the statue of Sir John Betjeman at St Pancras station, life resembling art via a bench in front of a life-sized painting in the Imperial War Museum, and skateboarders living their colourful life in the shadows along the South Bank…  🙂

Discover Challenge: Flaneur

Daily Prompt: Artificial

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Sometimes it’s fun to play around with the in-built special effects filters on my camera – it’s surprising how relatively ordinary everyday views can look totally different when viewed through a more creative lens – this particular filter is called ‘Impressive Art’ and gives a lighter, grainier textured, yet somehow more colourful image than when shooting in standard mode. I’ve found I quite like the overall grittiness of it when capturing these local urban backstreet scenes  🙂

Leytonstone, East London

Daily Prompt: Artificial

Losing My Way

Losing my Way…

I think I need to change the way I blog

It seems I’m losing focus week by week

Through metaphoric mud and word-bound fog

I’m wading day by day through landscape bleak

Life’s full of stress right now and things feel tough

Can’t see much further than each challenge set

My clarity of purpose not enough

To keep new blog posts flourishing – and yet

I’m hoping that by altering my view

My motivation finds another way

Ensures my blog, revitalised anew

Lives on in hope to post another day

Creatively I’m longing to break free

Of old constraints that choke and challenge me…

I’m really not in a very good place in life right now, but I’m doing my best not to lose sight of finding little spots of happiness wherever I can. And maintaining my blog does bring me happiness. I really do enjoy blogging, but somehow I feel I’ve got myself stuck in a bit of a deep dark rut with it all. So recently I’ve simply been trying my best to keep up with all the challenges I usually enjoy participating in, just to keep posting something rather than nothing, but even that’s not feeling enough any more.

But then, I suppose I’m feeling stuck in a rut with a lot of things at the moment, miserably slogging along as best I can, so really my blogging experience is simply reflecting my current life experience for now. Much as I wanted to keep this blog as a purely positive creative space, I have to appreciate that creativity in whatever form is a good thing, so perhaps instead of always having to find some forced positivity to present on my blog I simply need to take things as they come and let the feelings flow onto the page however they may manifest themselves?

I’m passionate about photography, and I love writing poetry, and at its core that’s what this blog is supposed to provide for me – a creative outlet for sharing my images and my words, whether positive or negative in tone. I think I need to find that simple point of focus again, maybe work on being a little more balanced in the content of my posts for a while, and see if that helps me find my way clear again…

And in the meantime, thanks for sticking by me, I always appreciate the company, especially through the darkest days when the tiniest pinprick of potential light at the end of the tunnel seems such a long, long way ahead 🙂

Busy Bee

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Life has been quite busy lately, one way or another. We’ve got a lot going on all at once, some stuff quite physically demanding and some more emotionally stressful, so I’ve been feeling the strain and I sense that my blogging has taken a bit of a hit.

Sometimes over the course of a blogging week it seems that all I do is join in with blog challenges with nothing else to say in between, but I’m trying not to get too worried about any of it and just keep going as best I can. I tell myself that at least this way I’m keeping up with posting regularly, so that’s got to be a good thing, I think.

My blog is very much my personal creative space, so hopefully as long as I can still find time to take a few photographs and write a couple of poems here and there and feel motivated enough to respond to the odd daily prompt I’ll be fine… 🙂

Discover Challenge: Connection

The connections I’ve made – and continue to make – through blogging are so very different (in a good way!) than connections made elsewhere on social media. My FaceBook page is basically where I stay connected as an additional extra with real-world friends and family, people who already know me as daughter, mother, student, work colleague, in a continuation of what we share outside of FaceBook.

But my WordPress site is where I am first and foremost me – just me. In general I have no links with other bloggers beyond our virtual connections – although I did meet some wonderful people in person at the Annual Bloggers Bash here in London over the summer, which was lovely. I found it so reassuring to see that everyone I met has exactly the same personality that comes across so clearly on their blog, and it was so interesting to chat about why each of us has chosen to blog in the first place.

Personally, my blog is my creative space where I share my renewed passion for photography, motivated by others to experiment with different challenges, trying out new things perhaps previously outside of my comfort zone, enjoying the process of learning from reading articles and viewing images on other blogs as well as by expanding my own creativity.

My blog is also where I’ve renewed my old love of writing poetry – encouraged by fellow bloggers I’ve learned to explore the structure of writing haiku, limericks, and sonnets, however falteringly to begin with. My blog is a safe space for me to play about with learning, maybe risk failing, but nevertheless always finding fun in new forms of expression.

I’ve discovered I love blogging with a passion that matches my love for photography and poetry, it gives me a particular freedom of expression that to date I’ve not find elsewhere in my life, and I’m forever grateful to everyone who views, likes, or comments on anything I post – so I just want to take this opportunity to thank you all for being such an important part of my very positive and enjoyable blogging experience  ❤

Discover Challenge: Connection