Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Two and a half weeks of thought

So my blogging hiatus seems to keep going and going and going... I certainly didn't expect it to last this long. I've spent some time contemplating why I had such a sudden and extreme shut down. I've shortened the list down to one general reason... I've outgrown... everything.... with my blog.

First and foremost, I've outgrown my technology. I've become increasingly frustrated with my camera and trying to focus it when using the self-timer. And with the configuration of our apartment, it's difficult to deal with lighting issues. I really want to develop my photography skills, but as great as my point and shoot camera is, I need a camera with more range.

Secondly, my computer lags something fierce. My desktop will turn 10 this fall. My netbook will turn 3. Yes, I've upgraded pieces on my desktop, and I do take decent care of my netbook, both have outlived their usefulness. Loading pics off of my camera is an exercise in patience. Editing them? Yikes.

Finally, Cara's Closet doesn't quite leave much room for evolution. Clothing, a still a favorite topic of mine, feels a little limiting. Yes, I tried to expand it with my new weekly schedule, but that felt too regulated. In trying to stop the regulation, I stopped blogging all together. It just seemed to hard trying to break the free of the ootd (outfit of the day) format especially given the association with clothing in the name.

The first two are easy solutions. I am in the process of researching what kind of camera and computer would fit my needs (currently a Rebel T3i and a MacBook Air are the frontrunners in each category). By the end of summer I should have both. Add to that a cell phone upgrade in fall, and I'll enter the 21st century.

The last one? A number of my favorite bloggers have gone on hiatus in the last year and every time, I have thought "why are they quitting? They don't need to quit. They are may feel they've outgrown the blog but I haven't outgrown them!" I feel the same way about own. I have made no plans to quit blogging, but I may quit Cara's Closet.

I haven't made any decisions yet. Instead, what I'd like to hear is your thoughts on:
1. Laptops offering portability and power
2. DSLRs that can grow with my skills
3. Favorite parts of Cara's Closet
4. What you'd always wanted to see on here / read about
5. Blogger vs Wordpress

Thanks, dudes... I've missed you all!

5 comments:

  1. I'm so glad you brought up this subject.

    I thought I was going insane -- several of my favorite blogs (including yours) went silent last month without explanation. I wondered what was in the air.

    I don't know why it happened all at the same time, but those bloggers (including you) recently re-surfaced to express the very thoughts you are presenting.

    Blogging is hard and, if its subject is too limited, it can get boring. My solution for that is to broaden the range of subjects -- beyond fashion, we can discuss movies, social issues and anything else that appeals to you. The diversity works for me and keeps me enthused.

    Getting a better camera is important: my photos improved dramatically when I went from a Canon point-and-shoot to a Nikon dSLR. Also, while we both suffer from lack of assistance in photo-taking, you can get good shots using a tripod and remote shutter-release. Another idea I am constantly exploring is taking pictures in new places, like outdoors and at parks.

    My favorite part of any blog is the personality of the blogger. Your blog attracts me for that. More than just your clothes, who you are is intriguing. Talking about yourself is very attractive to readers like me.

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  2. 1. As for laptops - my husband has a Samsung RC512. It runs infinitely cooler and better than my much more expensive Vaio. Mine overheats pretty badly, so I don't recommend it, though it does run okay. Both of ours are pretty large (because I'm blind @_@ ) but I know smaller version exist.

    2. I can't speak on Dslrs - I want one so badly, but no way I can drop a minimum of $600 on one. It's just not feasible for me. I like my Canon SD3500 IS, it's a great little point and shoot. However after fiddling with Lynne's DSLR when she was here, I think they are great. Just make sure you have the right editing software for the files. I had to rotate her image files in photoshop because my usual program didn't actually affect the file tag thing (technology sucks, but whatever I got it fixed).

    3. You! You're my favorite part of Cara's Closet. You talk to me on my blog, I talk to you on yours. As Ally said, use this platform for what you want it to be. My blog is me - daily. Mostly that means clothes, other times it's kitties, or cooking, or books, or movies, or crafting, or whatever is on my mind. I receive many readers who are there for the clothes, but many more who want to make friends.

    4. I like your blog a lot, and I think we all strive to keep positive, and ultimately what I want to see for you is happiness. I don't want a sad-Cara forcing herself to post. That's fun for no one. When the blog becomes work, decide if it's worth it. Change your ideas, change your blog. What's the worst that could happen? You lose a few followers and maybe gain a few more who are interested in your new ideas?

    5. Blogger. I hate wordpress. I hate commenting on WordPress, I hate trying to follow wordpress blogs. Admittedly I'm frustrated in the first place over Blogger dashboard and my inability to remove many defunct bloggers or ones who have switched focus (no offense to Mommy-bloggers, but I could care less about nursery decorations, I am not a Mom). Some people make it happen, use the proper channels to port their blog and all that. But yeah making the switch to wordpress doesn't really seem like a strong move a lot of bloggers make, in my humble opinion.

    At the very least, I appreciate when people announce they are leaving a blog. I like to keep my blogroll full of active bloggers I support and leaving deadlinks makes me sad.

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  3. 1. I know they are expensive, but I can speak to loving the decision to get a Macbook Air. It's sleek, it's speedy, it's awesome. I am so glad I made the investment, honestly I don't know how I lived without it.

    2. I am frustrated with my camera too, so I really can't offer much here. My husband has a DSLR and I've tried using it and I get frustrated so I don't. The quality is better yes, but I just want something simpler than that. So I'm curious to see if you find anything better!

    3. You. Your personality, your thoughts. I enjoy hearing what you have to say, I feel like you're the kind of person I'd enjoy hanging out with in real life if we lived near each other. And yes, I like your style too, but that is not the only reason I enjoy coming here.

    4. I want you to blog about what makes you happy. Like I said, I like your style, but if you are having trouble with that, then blog about other things you like. I have found what works for me is that I do still do a daily outfit, but I try to talk about activities I'm involved in, things I do with my husband, movies, shows, etc. Kind of like Megan Mae, it's my daily life in a virtual scrapbook. Because I love clothes it is often the main topic, but I've enjoyed sharing other parts of my life as well.

    5. Blogger. I considered moving to Wordpress, but I don't like the layout and I guess I just feel that Blogger is really user friendly.

    Overall, I enjoy your blog, you're one of the ones I've missed, but also don't stress yourself out, you have to do what is best for you!

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  4. As one of those bloggers who tends to disappear for a while, I feel bad when my readers wonder what happened to me. Some of my favorite bloggers have stopped blogging, and I understand how disappointing it can be. I'm also terrible about commenting on other people's blogs (sorry!).

    I feel like every blogger goes through a period (or several) where they're trying to figure out what they want their blog to be. It's completely OK to change the focus of your blog--I got away from the OOTD posts too. I agree with everyone else that it's YOU we care about.

    I'm not the best person to ask about cameras and laptops. I use a cheapy point-and-shoot camera, and I bought my laptop because I liked the keyboard.

    I was on Blogger for 6 months before switching to Wordpress (.org self-hosted). Yes, Blogger is more user friendly, but nothing compares to all the plugins/widgets you get with Wordpress. I also have much more control over the colors, fonts, themes, etc. Wordpress is the standard platform for people who blog as their business (soon to be me). You can import your blog content from Blogger to Wordpress easily. I also recommend buying a .com domain name since it's only $5-10 for a year.

    Will you rename your blog or keep it as Cara's Closet?

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  5. Miss Cara. I understand. My blog has changed in the last little while because my life has changed. And I've seen a huge drop off of followers. And that's ok because I'm writing about what I want to and I feel like it's more important to be authentic. What I like about your blog is the observations and bits about your life. Maybe I'm just voyeuristic but I love to see how other people live. I would love to see your blog continue in any form that makes you happy...

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