Thinking about Art/Photography blogs

Alec Soth, Bonnie (with a photograph of an angel), Port Gibson, Mississippi 2000

Alec Soth’s departure to blogging has left a deafening silence in the Internet for me. From September 3rd, 2006 through September 30th, 2007, Alec provided a haven for not only reading about photography but a virtual hub to openly discuss and debate photography away from the Flickr and forum hounds. However, as I think about the mark he made in the community the silence has made me think about the roll of blogging in the photographic and art communities. These questions keep circling through my head:

  • What and how do blogs function in the long term?
  • What happens to his blog now that it is idly sitting on his server?
  • What is it now but an archive of artist’s thoughts over the course of a year? How refined is it? Would Alec change anything he wrote?
  • What does Alec think of his yearlong experiment? Is this it or will he ever return and blog/write again?
  • What would a blog from Jeff Wall (1980 or today) read like? Longer more theoretical posts? Would that work? Does Jeff Wall Google himself?
  • Is there a place for an October like blog? would the Art and Photography communities care?
  • Do long form and/or more theoretical essays have a place in the blog format?
  • How does blogging about photography affect your art work and your standing with in the art world? which follows What did Alec Soth get out of making his blog?

All this was sparked by a recient post from Christian Patterson who is feeling burnt out on the whole blog thing. We’ll see what happens with his blog as the months roll on it doesn’t seem like he has thrown in the towel yet.

As for me, I feel like I never really put enough effort into this. Therefore, this next year I hope to be more vigilant with this blog thing, give it a real show, run it through its paces, and then evaluate it. Maybe a medium of journals and magazines can better discuss photography but maybe there is a place for this as well—despite some recent dwindling numbers?