Sunday, January 27, 2013

Your Phone Can Make You a Better Writer (or can it?)

Some thoughts heading into our Monday night workshop....

On 04 Feb 2013, a Monday night, we'll be having another "Beach and Culture" event.

The evening will talk about pocket cameras and smartphones and what they can do for us as bloggers and writers. If you're already registered, I look forward to meeting you that night. If you're still undecided, I might want to caution you --- I think we're up to at least 220 folks, and I assume for practical as well as philosophical reasons, sooner or later they'll have to stop registration. If nothing else, we're going to be past legal capacity for the meeting room, even if we assume an "x factor" of no-shows.

What will we cover during our session that night?

Oh dear chums, perhaps it would be easier to say, what won't we cover. It wouldn't be fair to me or you to try and compress a full evening of discussion and hands-on projects into one small blog post narration, but I can at least preview some of our topics. These will include....





and the revealing detail.

Of course, the real answer to the question of how to write better is pretty much the same as how to have better running times (run more) or how to ollie a railing (skateboard more). If you want to write well, you need to think of it like a craft (learning how to finish wood) and a daily lifestyle decision (set goals, be practical, do it daily). Photographs though can be a big help. I am going to show some "good and bad" writing examples based on my late father, and show how the better writing came from using photography, as well as show what shots I took in Istanbul strictly to use as a kind of rough draft or notepad for a writing project.

Journals tie in with this as well.

As does the concept of simple pleasure. Writing and photography should provide joy and creative expression, and as soon as they no longer do so, it's time to take up a new art form.

Last, one of the most important "take home" messages from Monday, besides the practical advice about how to boss your flash around (instead of it bossing you), and besides the admonish to edit (and to back things up), will be just this:

making good art --- no matter what the format or genre or medium --- is just plain fun.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Charles,
    I attended Monday night and was totally inspired to shoot better pictures. Thank you! I'm wondering if you have any advice on how to adapt this concept for 1st graders- I am a Young at Art docent in Hermosa Beach and I'd like to do a simple documentary photography project with a class of 6-year-olds. Could you perhaps email me? Thanks again.