I’ve used so many systems for publishing my photos in a gallery-type format over the years. I have images in other places (on Flickr for example), and will likely continue to do that for ease of quick posting, particularly from my phone, but I have always wanted a site where I gather together the images that I am most proud of, and also write the odd image-heavy essay from time to time.
For a while, I used a static, self-built system that mashed together Hugo for the front end and a Python script to pull EXIF information from the images and generate the content pages. It worked (most of the time), but it was a lot more complicated that it needed to be.
I had been playing about with Blot for a while, but when it was updated some lovely themes specifically intended for images, I realised that I could recreate the essential features of my site in a much easier to use format. Essentially, all I need to do when export images is to bake the caption, date, and tag (essentially, the album name) into the path and filename, and then drop the images on to the appropriate Blot Dropbox folder. The pages are created automatically and almost instantly, and — bingo! — the site is updated.
I mostly use a Fujifilm X100T at the moment, using RAW format, and process the images using Phase One Capture One Pro. I love ths workflow, and I make a lot of use of Capture One’s Processing recipes to format and title images ready for export (both to this site, and to import into Apple Photos).
Finally, you may be wondering about the title for this site. I have had photoblogs in various forms over the years, always called ‘Wings Open Wide’. It’s from a line in a David Sylvian song, ‘Orpheus’:
Sunlight falls, my wings open wide
There’s a beauty here I cannot deny
It’s a lovely song, and I always loved those lines particularly. I don’t flatter myself that the photographs here are always beautiful, but the difficulty of capturing beauty (in all its forms) is what motivates me to take photographs, and is what I’m always struggling to achieve. I post them here because I would like to share with you what I have noticed and found to be beautiful.