Snapshot #139 | 10 Things for 3 November 2019

Personal

Currently…

1. wishing… for a normal week. It’s hard to build a routine lately.
2. getting… inspired. I’ve got a bunch of new ideas for These Modern Things all of a sudden. (Probably because I’ve also got a huge list of revisions to do on The Black Sun.)
3. accepting… that my Lomo’Instant is dying. (It still technically works, but only in full sun, and even then it’s iffy.) It’s such a cute camera, but… yeah. I’m annoyed that it didn’t last longer.
4. trying… not to go overboard on Hallowe’en candy. (And failing.)
5. daydreaming… about converting a school bus into a tiny house. Someday….
6. waking… up at 4:30 in the morning because the cat hates this particular time change with a passion.
7. watching… so many movies.
8. shifting… to a traveler’s notebook for my bullet journal and other day-to-day stuff. (I’ve had it for a while, but I wanted to finish up the book I was using first.) I’m not sure what I think of it yet; I might end up switching back to a Moleskine in January.
9. recycling… another bag of stress-inducing clutter. Such a great feeling.
10. feeling… a bit overwhelmed.

Inspired | September 2019

Links

Every month, I share the articles and sites that I found most interesting. Here’s what caught my attention in September: finances of book deals and self-publishing, China’s effect on Hollywood, thoughts on Instagram and Like buttons, how commuting has shaped cities, and more.

Black and white photo of poppy seed heads. Photo by Reghan Skerry.

Project366: #181-190

Photography

If nothing else, this week has been a reminder that I really need to invest in a new camera. I’ve resisted for a long time—I loathe the wastefulness of replacing technology before I absolutely have to, and my DSLR is still serving me well. I started on film SLRs (well, I started on a cheap plastic 110, which I got as a prize for selling the most wrapping paper at an elementary school fundraiser, but I eventually moved on to real SLRs), and I still like the feeling of a real viewfinder better than looking at a screen. Switching to mirrorless doesn’t really appeal to me, even if I do sigh over how beautiful some of the cameras themselves are. (I’m shallow. I know.)

Plus, I’ve got a weird tendency to get emotionally attached to things like cameras and computers. Even when they do eventually fail, it takes me a while to move on.

Frosted Window photo by Reghan Skerry

Snapshot #114 | 10 Things for 18 November 2018

Personal

Currently…

1. grumbling… about the cold and the snow. Actual snow. It’s too early.
2. reminding… myself that I spent most of NaNoWriMo behind ‘par’ last year, and I still did just fine in the end.
3. resisting… the temptation to blow my savings on a medium-format camera. (A friend-of-a-friend-of-a-friend is selling their old kit. If I was willing to spend that much money on myself this close to Christmas….)
4. testing… a few things.
5. finalizing… my holiday baking plans. I’m scaling things back this year. (I mean it this time! Though I do think there’s going to be a batch of non-Christmas cookies sometime soon, too….)
6. running… just a little bit behind, with pretty much everything.
7. accepting… that it’s time to cut my hair. I keep trying to grow it out, but my frustration always outweighs my desire for a cute messy bun.
8. trying… to decide whether I love or hate the new WordPress.com post editor. Could go either way right now.
9. mourning… William Goldman and Stan Lee. This hasn’t been a great week.
10. remembering… my obsession with taking photos of frosted-over windows.

Snapshot #111 | 10 Things for 7 October 2018

Personal

Happy (Canadian) Thanksgiving weekend!

Currently…

1. reading… some very good books.
2. feeling… inspired.
3. getting… irrationally frustrated every time I see someone talk about “fonts” when they mean “lettering.” (Actually. No. It’s not irrational. Fonts and lettering are not the same thing, and I love them both.)
4. buying… one of the dress patterns I was swooning over a few weeks ago. I’m sure it’ll drive me batty, but that’s fine. It’s worth it.
5. starting… to narrow down my options for the Christmas baking marathon.
6. enduring… a cold.
7. resisting… the temptation to buy a bunch of new camera gear. (Sort of. I’m channelling the temptation into research, planning, and motivation.)
8. waiting… for the new series of Doctor Who. Only a few hours to go!
9. accepting… that I’m not going to reach my running goals for the year. I’m going to be spending the rest of the season just getting back to where I was before the humidity derailed me. But that’s ok. There’s always next year.
10. looking… forward to getting back to work. I’ve got a lot of plans for the next few weeks, and I can’t wait.

Inspired | September 2018

Links

Every month, I share the articles and sites that I found most interesting. Here’s what caught my attention in September.

Debut Advice: Self-care, Reviews, and Shifting from Reader to Writer by Paper Kyoko: “But in my experience, the sooner you put up boundaries and make a permanent mental shift from reader to writer, the better.”

Strictly analogue: Polaroid’s past, present and future – a photo essay by Christian Sinibaldi and Mee-Lai Stone: Guardian photographer Christian Sinibaldi tours the world’s last Polaroid film factory, in the Netherlands, the only remaining factory still making film for the much-loved instant cameras

Procrastination: It’s pretty much all in the mind by Nazima Pathan: “Experts say the study, in Psychological Science, underlines procrastination is more about managing emotions than time.”

(Deliberate) practice makes perfect: how to become an expert in anything by Aytekin Tank: “And for most areas in our lives, a baseline level of skill is enough. But if we want to truly excel, we have to push past this complacency and out of our comfort zone.”

Captain Marvel, explained by the people who reimagined her by Susana Polo

“Carol falls down all the time,” DeConnick says, “but she always gets back up — we say that about Captain America as well, but Captain America gets back up because it’s the right thing to do. Carol gets back up because ‘Fuck you.’

The Victorian Cards That Explained How to Use a Book to Flirt by Natasha Frost: “Young people wanted to flirt with one another; the cards were just one very small part of what the pearl-clutching Morning Oregonian, in 1871, called “apparently innocent indulgences” that paved the way “to ruin.””

• It’s been a while since I talked about the music I’m listening to, hasn’t it? (Besides Talking Heads, I mean.) I’m kind of loving this video from Nadine Shah. (Via. The interview is good, too.)

What’s the most interesting thing you saw online this month?

Inspired | April 2018

Links

Every month, I put together a list of everything that caught my attention. Here’s April.

How to read poetry like a professor an interview with Thomas Foster by Jake Nevins

How Social Media Perpetuates Cliché Photography by Graham Hiemstra: Three key influencers discuss originality, the rise of copycat photographers, and the future of Instagram (via Goodbye Instagram, hello Ello by Samuel Zeller, which is also a very interesting read.)

Can Instagram keep its nose clean? by Gian Volpicelli: “… it’s hard not to feel that Instagram lucked out, effectively airbrushing its public image amid Facebook’s whirlwind of scandals.”

Nikon versus Canon: A Story Of Technology Change by Steven Sinofsky

What’s the difference between a camera and a human eye? by Haje Jan Kamps: Or: What’s the ISO of a human eye?

What about the Breakfast Club? by Molly Ringwald: “How are we meant to feel about art that we both love and oppose? What if we are in the unusual position of having helped create it?”

Queens of Infamy: Eleanor of Aquitaine by Anne Thériault

Richard joined Eleanor after a few years, since she was ostensibly ruling in his name and he would one day have to take over as Duke of Aquitaine, and during this time the two became very close. You know that scene in Disney’s Robin Hood where a disconsolate Prince John mutters “mother always did like Richard best”? If that is not the truest line in any Disney movie ever, I don’t know what is.

Style Is an Algorithm by Kyle Chayka

We find ourselves in a cultural uncanny valley, unable to differentiate between things created by humans and those generated by a human-trained equation run amok. In other words, what is the product of genuine taste and what is not.

Inspired | March 2018

Links

A list of everything that’s caught my attention this month.

The Kent Test by Clarkisha Kent (via TMS)

Definition: a test designed to determine whether a film or any other piece of media has provided the audience with adequate representation of femmes of color. This is meant to encourage discussion on what good representation can look like for femmes of color and it is not the be all end all test (but it is a good place to start). The Kent Test is named after and created by culture writer and critic Clarkisha Kent.

The Lack of Published Gay YA By Gay Authors? Lets Talk About It by Kosoko Jackson

How to choose meaningful words: why language matters by Jan Fortune

Narrative and meaning go hand in hand. We all need stories that make sense of experience, particular and universal. But if the language functions to exclude our experience then how do we find this meaning?

Enlisting an audience: How Hollywood peddles propaganda by Amos Barshad

That’s the difference between our propaganda and everyone else’s. In autocratic regimes, a government-backed entity pushes it onto indifferent or unwilling consumers. In America, we, the consumers, happily demand it.

The male glance: how we fail to take women’s stories seriously by Lili Loofbourow: Male art is epic, universal, and profoundly meaningful. Women’s creations are domestic, emotional and trivial. How did we learn to misread stories so badly?

This is how the world’s most covetable cameras get made by Vlad Savov: a tour of the Hasselblad factory.

In Defense of Trends (Keep Calm and Let Them Be) by Grace Bonney

I fell into the trap of assuming that the trendiness or lower cost of something meant it would be tossed and replaced any day now. But for most people that’s not true. Something doesn’t have to be a) expensive b) utterly unique or c) classic for someone to hold onto it and love it for years to come.

Halifax’s battle of the rising sea: Will the city be ready for future floods and storms? by Matthew McClearn: The deluges Nova Scotians faced during 2003’s Hurricane Juan could be commonplace within decades – but the provincial capital has barely begun to prepare.

Kat Robichaud’s tribute to David Bowie is amazing and makes me cry in the best possible way (via Neil Gaiman’s Twitter):

Snapshot #81 | 10 Things for 16 July 2017

Personal

Currently…

1. taking… steps to find my inspiration & motivation again.
2. playing… with kittens. 😻
3. hoping… for a pleasant surprise when they announce the next Doctor later today.
4. remembering… why I should never give in to an impulse buy, no matter how tempting. Grr.
5. catching… up with my 365 project! Finally. (It’ll still be a couple of days before I’m completely caught up, but I’m getting there. The pictures will be up here by the end of this week, I promise.)
6. attempting… that ice cream recipe that’s been giving me trouble. I think I know what’s been going wrong (chemistry!), and this should confirm it one way or the other.
7. starting… the painting. You know the one.
8. searching… for a bag that’ll hold all my stuff. The one I thought was perfect… wasn’t. (See #4, above.)
9. wondering… why Canada Post never bothers to scan parcels. Ever. (I wonder this every single time I order something that ships via Canada Post. It’s maddening.)
10. practicing… with my Lomo’Instant. I am determined to learn how to use this thing properly.

2017 Project365 #143 | Reghan Skerry

Project365: #141-147

Photography

(A little late posting this week, but that’s ok!)

Looking at these pictures, you can probably tell: I had basically no motivation or inspiration this week. I’m still taking photos of flowers, because it’s spring, and that’s still something of a novelty, but that’s about it.

However.

Despite the lack of motivation, and the mundane subject matter, I’m still really happy with at least two of these pictures. And it’s not a coincidence that I pulled out the DSLR for both of them. I love shooting with my phone, and as this project goes on, I’m getting pretty good at figuring out how to get the shots I want despite its limitations. But it just doesn’t compare to a real camera.