Matt Jones

Out of the Ordinary

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The adage ‘write from experience’ could be considered good advice to those who maintain a weblog. However if, like me, your daily experiences are based upon a routine of mundane activities - which consist mainly of commute, work, commute, sleep and so on - then you may be forgiven for thinking that writing from these experiences would make for rather dull reading. Lifting experiences out of life's flux and publishing them as words is a challenge I enjoy; furthermore, it is an approach that can be applied to the activity of publishing images to the web.

A number of years ago, when I started studying and practicing photography, a tutor said something to me so inspirational that barely a day goes by that I don't think about it. What he said was this: at any one time, everywhere around you are infinite possibilities for making images. At the time, I remember looking out of the window and seeing a car park and some trees and being pretty unimpressed with the choice of photographic opportunities on offer. But it wasn't long before I adjusted to the idea that photography didn't have to be about taking your camera to an object worthy of being photographed; it's also possible to tease interesting images out of the extremely commonplace.

Modern mobile devices give us the ability to publish images of events witnessed at first hand, an activity known as moblogging. On occasion these events will be news worthy, presenting new opportunities for gathering and publishing evidence of such events, but these occasions are rare; mostly, the mobile communications device will be at hand only to record the ordinariness of life. For me, this is potentially the most exciting aspect of moblogging; to resist the temptation of the ‘photo-op’ and instead point the camera at the shapes and textures that constitute our environment.

I can't help but think that the coming together of the camera and wireless technology will impact on the medium of photography on a scale similar to that seen when Kodak popularised photography with their affordable compact cameras at the start of the 20th Century. We will have to wait and see.