Thursday, June 4, 2015

Even More Thoughts on Blogging



Seems like every year, at about this time, I reflect on the state of my blog and my life as a blogger. I did this both in 2013 and in 2014. And ironically when the thought struck me again today as I write this post, it is exactly one year to the day from my last post on the subject.

I have had this blog since 2007. I have written over 1400 posts, shared countless pictures, and somehow have received over 935,000 hits -- a number that never fails to astound me. I have met a gazillion people online, many of whom I have also been fortunate enough to meet in person. Although I can be found on most of the other requisite platforms as well, I still see my blog as my online home. And I fully believe that without my blog, I would not be the artist, author or instructor I have become.

In contrast to some artists who blog, I have never seen The Altered Page as a chore or a drain or a time suck. It is my most reliable creative outlet, a connection to my peeps (yes, I mean you), and truly a pleasure to maintain. Often late at night in fact, when perhaps I ought to be sleeping.

In my very first blog post (which I recall struggling to write as if my very words would determine my future), I shared the following...

"Welcome to The Altered Page. I see this blog as one more element of my mixed media artwork. Much like the paper, gesso, acrylics, and other components of each piece, I believe the conversation that I am hopeful that this blog will generate will become an integral ingredient to the creative mix.... Right now, I have 3 goals in mind for this blog. First, to share my art and receive feedback in return. Second, to share artists, websites, stores, books, ideas, and creations that I have found. And third, to share great art finds from the museums, galleries, and streets of New York. Thanks for coming along for the ride!"

Somehow, all these years later, my goals remain just about the same. That doesn't surprise me as I am a creature of habit. That is crystal clear by the facts that 1) I have not updated the layout of my blog once in nearly 8 years of life and 2) I might just be the only artist who is using a canned header that doesn't even include a photograph.

Nevertheless, reflection is good and sometimes change is too. I still grapple with the issue of balancing creative sharing with self promotion (as discussed in this previous blog post). This is especially true now that I am a maker of products (books, stencils, DVDs, etc.) in addition to being a maker of art. Going forward I plan to continue to do my best to maintain that balance and plan to share more posts that can be filed under the label of "thoughts."

And I hope that you all will continue to stay on this ride with me...

29 comments:

Kelly Kilmer said...

Thanks, Seth, for posting this. Your love of blogging clearly comes through. I'm grateful for you and the other bloggers who are still posting. I love blogging and appreciate it when others do it, too.

Funny, my header doesn't have a photo either. I always think that others are just too busy making art to bother with theirs, too. ;)

Thank you again for all that you share!

Brian Kasstle said...

Keep on bloggin' my friend! I love it too.

bockel24 said...

I love your blog as it is, and I´m happy to see that there are other artists who are trying to keep their blogs alive because blogging is a much more personal medium than any pre-made and commercialized social media ... and it really is not time consuming at all. Thanks for all your efforts and keep blogging, Seth!

Penny said...

I agree, I like blogging and bloggers, Fb is quick but nothing going like blogging, although most of mine is just to keep in touch with friends and not nearly as interesting going as yours. It was lovely to put a real face to you in Melbourne last year (I was in Ro Bruins class, not yours.)

Teresa Abajo said...

You're one of the most amazing people I've ever met! From the very beginning, you've been bringing people out of their arty hidey holes and forming a community. Love your work Seth - thank you for being you.

elle said...

You are achieving your goals and the ride is exhilarating! I hardly knew I needed a round trip ticket for this journey but I am sure glad you punched my ticket! Bless you!

Roberta Warshaw said...

I hope you keep blogging. Many of the blogs I follow have disappeared. I am sorry to see them go. I don't always comment but I try to always read my favorites. Yours is one of those. It seems like a lot of people are doing instagram more now because you don't have to say much. Just post a photo and you are done. But I like the chattiness of a blog and hope to continue for some time.

trish quilty said...

What would I look forward to everyday?Its either your FB or blog. They keep me in a creative mood, show me sites, art, articles, blogs etc that I might not have ever seen. I appreciate all your hard work in the art world as I do others that are still blogging.
And of course enjoy your classes when I can get to one. Yay!
Keep on blogging Seth please.....

Diana Gabriella said...

I really enjoy your blog. Since meeting you and taking your classes, my creativity has expanded beyond what I even imagined. My son even asked for one of the covers I did in class! Thanks for all the time and effort you put into keeping in touch with your peeps!! :)

Diana Gabriella said...

I really enjoy your blog. Since meeting you and taking your classes, my creativity has expanded beyond what I even imagined. My son even asked for one of the covers I did in class! Thanks for all the time and effort you put into keeping in touch with your peeps!! :)

jinxxxygirl said...

I thoroughly enjoy your blog too Seth... I love what you show us and since your style is different from my own you encourage me to think' outside the box'... I would miss you if you were to stop blogging..

I haven't changed my blog much since i began blogging in 2008.. i'am a creature of habit. i try to give a good mix of art and personal life... I don't try to post everyday and just pretty much just go with how i'm feeling .. sometimes thats once a week sometimes three.. There hasn't been much art lately because we've been in the process of moving since the first of the year... so its been alot more personal life than art lately but hey... thats whats going on.... We are now in our home but still so much going on...plumbing, electrical... insulation..sheetrock then paint...uughh.. but i know one day i will be settled in a truly awesome craftroom where i can let my imagination soar... Thanks for all you do Seth! Hugs! deb

tricia anders said...

I certainly enjoy your blog and your efforts have paid off. You inspire me to be better with my own pitiful efforts! ty!

Maureen said...

Your blog is a model, and your passion for art and teaching and writing is always in evidence. Getting to meet you in person was fun!

Pamela Gerard said...

Seth-- another one of your lovely, thoughtful, interesting posts. Please do keep up your blog -- it ins[ires many of us -- and your generous and artistic spirit shines through.

Jo Murray said...

True to your original goals Seth! Communication, sharing art, keeping it real...perfect formula. It is a delight to keep up to date with you.

Kathleen Harrington said...

Seth, your blog is the very first blog I've followed and it's the only one that I follow regularly. Even though there is no photo in the header, you've got lots of photos on the side and they tell the story of your art. Your blog is very easy to navigate and full of loads of links (that work, too, a real plus). So far, I think you've done very well with keeping the balance between sharing and promoting. I am so glad to hear that you enjoy blogging as part of your artistic expression. Maybe that's why we all keep coming back. I'm very excited for your upcoming class, 52 Card Pick Up, in Petaluma later this summer. It will be so nice to meet you in person.

Jacki Long said...

Thank you Seth for your consistent unselfish sharing that benefits so many of us.
I respect you art ability, your eye, your teaching but even more your kindness and ethics. I think you set the bar and I thank you. Meeting you in person was a bonus!

Ingrid Kristina V said...

Hi Seth! I love your posts and each time I read another I get to know you a little bit more. I love seeing your art and am grateful that you share and inspire us that way. I also appreciate the fact that self promotion is not an easy thing. I look at it more as 'spreading the word' and it serves a purpose not only of Letting everyone know about yourself and your art but also creates friendships which is great. I said it before, you are a great artist and a lovely person and it is a pleasure to help to spread the word :) all the best! Ingrid :)

Stephanie said...

Hi Seth - I so enjoy your blog. Your effort shows through in the posts. BTW I love the image at the top of the post too.

Kay Wallace said...

I am likely a relative newcomer to your blog, Seth, but I don't miss it! I wish now that I could remember how I found you. Others have already offered up the compliments of which you are so deserving, so I will skip that part and, in return, offer this: You don't need to worry about self-promotion. When you have new products or a new class or book, we want to know. We will decide whether it is something we like or want to have or need to know. Please continue to share with us as your readers what's new and where you'll be. If we didn't care about you, we wouldn't be here--so share away! If you are proud of an accomplishment, we want to share that with you! We're listening....

Hastypearl said...

In a nutshell...Less contemplating, more blogging, continued following...;) Laura

Barbara Smith said...

You feel like a friend and a partner and your blog is your voice, and through your blog I get to talk with you almost every day. You consistently reach out to teach, inspire, unite, and delight in equal measure whether you're sharing a technique, your own work, someone else's work, or art news in general, and in doing so you make me feel like I'm part of a big raucous family of passionate artists who support each other through thick and thin. Keep on keeping' on, Seth!

john said...

So well said! :-)

maread said...

Yummy, Seth ..... thanks for sharing your process. You know connection and how to keep that creative process alive so beautifully. Exciting colorful new image at the photoless heading. See you in 2016 or 2017 unless sooner! hah

Genie Geer said...

***whew!*** For a second there, I was worried you were saying goodbye. Very happy you are keeping on!

Sue Marrazzo said...

Awesome POST!
Keep on keeping ON!

Becca Feeken said...

Seth congrats on another year!! Your blog post struck a chord as I too feel like blogging is my home, my comfort zone, my blankie. Venturing out with other social media a little bit, but blogging is where the rubber meets the road. Best wishes for the coming year and I think the blog is a perfect place to muse about art and connect!! What a blessing!

JackieP Neal said...

Great read Seth!
I too use a canned header! haahaa
love you the way you are! teeheehee

Jeanne said...

Seth - your blog is one of my primary go - to places on the internet. Your generosity towards the art of art is inspiring as is your own work. Thank you for all of the information you share and for the joy that you show up with. xo
Jeanne