I’ve resisted turning comments on in my blog for some time. It’s not that I haven’t wanted feedback from you or to know what you think. It probably has more to do with my art past and how I saw this site as my online database of ideas, creations, and influences. For me, blogging began as an evolution of art-web experiments I was already doing.
In 1996, I started a personal site/art site called ADD (analog digital diary) which was essentially an early hand-made HTML version of a blog. The site was based on a grid calendar that contained dates with links to view the photos, words, graphics, ideas or sculptures I was working on every day; a listing page with the most current post at the top; ways to view by category (sculpture, multimedia, scan, recording, text) or view by date, theme, or any other views that I wanted to include. The main page was minimal – the latest post and side links to the various ways to view. Navigation was also pared down to “view by date”, “view by media type”, “view by theme”, and an archives and calendar link. The design was equally reduced and mostly HTML text or links with the actual content of the piece as the central focus. When I use the current version of flickr, I’m reminded of what I was trying to make in many ways, particularly with the calendar view option in interestingness.
The purpose of the site was to give myself a place to post anything and everything that I was doing while an art student in graduate school and to create a website like none that I had seen or used. Whether I drew a large viewership wasn’t really a concern or a goal, and as far as feedback, I was getting plenty of daily feedback and critique in grad school (to say the least!).
When blogging came around, it was mostly the tools that invigorated me at first. Suddenly, here were flexible, free, and extensible web-based systems that did everything I wanted to do with a database-driven site but didn’t have the time or know-how to write myself. But the next wave of excitement was the speed with which blogs erupted online. Suddenly, everyone was a writer, photographer, documentarian, journalist, thought leader, critic, artist – blogger. People posting opinions, reviews, photos, art, intimate details of our lives, carefully crafted HTML worlds of how we each want to be perceived. From an artistic perspective, that has been a thrill to see.
For the most part with my blog, it’s been one-way communication: me exhibiting and broadcasting to all of you. I’ve turned comments on with lots of anticipation. Hope we have some good conversations.