Happy birthday Jamoroki – it's your first

It’s hard to believe that it is only one year and nearing 150 posts since I published – my first blog post – which to this day has still received no likes and no comments. I’ve polished it up a little but the message hasn’t changed. Could it really have been that bad?

But I’ve moved on and now it seems like I’ve been blogging forever. I’m no big hitter by any stretch of the imagination – just happy that my pages have been viewed over 10,000 times and nearly 300 people enjoy following me. Writing my columns every month for The Displaced Nation and Expat Focus gets me out of jamoroki’s box and is good fun. Thanks to both of you for airing my stuff.

Blogging is addictive

Little did I know when I embarked on the adventure how addictive it would become or how demanding fuelling that addiction would be. Starting on a new hobby or, as it seems now, more like a new career, in your septuagenarian years may seem strange. Most people my age have planned their retirement in such a way that they are using all their energy and time working out how to do nothing. Apparently that’s called relaxing which I don’t actually find relaxing. I’m not entirely sure why but I seem to be constantly facing new challenges of a more robust kind which I have a habit of often accepting. So relaxing inevitably has a very different meaning to me.

Kata Beach Resort Hotel - Phuket
A balmy evening at Kata Beach Resort Hotel – Phuket

Photography is addictive too

It was only four months ago in April that I entered even more unchartered waters. The world of DSLR cameras, HDR photography and all the paraphernalia that goes with it was completely unknown to me. It was the burning desire to add better pictures to my posts that took me into the absorbing world of photography and back to my artistic bent of yesteryear. That’s not to say I had never taken photographs or was a complete numbskull in that regard but I had practically no knowledge of the art so if any of my shots were ok I was lucky not skilful.

A tranquill morning at an estuary in Cape Panwa - Phuket - Thailand
A tranquill morning at an estuary in Cape Panwa – Phuket – Thailand

Thankfully, I was naïve enough to think that it may not be too difficult so I waded in. Quickly up to my neck and close to drowning in a sea of techno speak, Googling and a diet of blockbuster YouTube video tutorials I took a two month sabbatical. I cocooned myself away on Thailand’s tropical Koh Phuket – a foilically challenged Robinson Crusoe. I believe it was well worth it and I feel rewarded for my efforts.

Cape Panwa estuary - Phuket
A splash of colour at Cape Panwa estuary – Phuket

After a multitude of cock-ups and trial and error disappointments I figured out (sans perfection) how to handle my Canon T3i 600D camera. There were a few times when I thought I might be a brain free creation but nevertheless, fearless, I ploughed on. Self-teaching in my hermetic world it gradually came together. By the time I returned to base in Chiang Mai on 9th July I had a pretty good understanding of Adobe Lightroom 5 and was satisfied that I could now start to work with it. I was already working with two other software packages, Photomatix Pro and GIMP, so now I am up and running.

Preparing the rice seedlings for planting - Huai Kaew - Chiang Mai
Preparing the rice seedlings for planting – Huai Kaew – Chiang Mai

I realised long ago that the more you know the more you understand how much you don’t know.  The circle never closes.

Thanks a lot guys and dolls.

A big birthday thank you readers for taking the trouble to visit me here and to all those wonderful cyber friends who have inspired and helped me through the first year. Their generosity in freely sharing their work, friendship, opinions and knowledge via video tutorials, forums, posts and emails has meant a lot. They are too many to list but they will know who they are.

Let blogging be a lesson to all those in conflict around the world. Blogging creates an environment of friendship, bringing people closer together through sharing information, knowledge and art. So as Michael Jackson said let’s:

“Heal the world. Make it a better place for you and for me and the entire human race.” 

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12 thoughts on “Happy birthday Jamoroki – it's your first”

  1. Times does fly by and I have enjoyed watching you grow with your art. I admire artist because it takes courage to put your self open to others. We are not that far apart on the age of our blogs here on word press. I am looking forward to the years ahead of us. jackie

  2. Howdy! This article couldn’t be written any
    better! Looking at this article reminds me of my previous roommate!

    He continually kept preaching about this. I’ll forward this information to him.
    Pretty sure he’s going to have a good read. Thank you
    for sharing!

  3. Great post on blogging, James! My wife, Sandy, is my website guru and wonders if she could reblog some of your South African pictures? She lived in Johannesburg 1967-1970 and has always been in love with the country. I think first you have to actually learn how to “become” the blog, and then the blog takes on it’s own life. My problem was first I had to define what the heck a blog was…and it is still evolving! 🙂

    1. I would agree Pat. For me my blog is an extension of my personality – who I am so to speak. It took me a while to find my feet, experiment and feel comfortable in the environment. One of the secrets is to make sure you don’t get ‘blogged’ down so it starts to become a chore rather than a joy. I have managed to get to the point where I have a planned, programmwed schedule 12 months ahead. I only realised recently that there is a post scheduler which I badly needed particularly because my photo blog Jamoroki-art takes up a lot of time. It’s a bit of a slog doing the scheduling but once you have a system up and running it really frees you up to be more creative. Tell Sandy she is most welcome to reblog any of my photos from either jamoroki or jamoroki-art. I operate under Creative Commons licences. I have returned the compliment and put you on my follow list. Keep well. James

    1. Thank you Eric. I am trying to add to my posts more and more with better photography so the compliment is really appreciated. Nearly every village in Thailand has a temple as the focal point and the towns have many. So Thailand is full of temples, large and small. The monasteries are part of the temple complex or grounds where the monks live. I have just taken some new pictures of my village temple which I haven’t processed yet. maybe I should do a post on it later.

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