Interview52:

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A group distraction, presented by nige.


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The first instalment of Interview52 is now complete! It started on Friday 18th July 2008 and finished on 13th September 2009. A little later than expected, but we got there.


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52 mobloggers from around the world...

Some familiar, some not...

Each will publish a unique self-portrait, accompanied by a short interview.


Candid portrait meets candid interview.


The Rules

Every Friday the next interviewee in line will publish a new portrait and interview, consisting of their answers to the ten questions they have been given.

After they have published, the interviewee will then become the interviewer. They will be responsible for finding the next participant, as well as compiling the questions that this next person in line will answer. Interviewers can change as many or as few questions as they like, but they should change at least one before passing them on to the next lucky punter.

Thats it! Simple. More detailed instructions will be given to each interviewee as and when they are approached, so fear not.


The interviewees so far

shitake

spongevid

Salome

FilbertFox

Essitam

harimanjaro

parabolichobo

Viv

Jig along

Caine

factotum

Laszlo Q. V. St-J. Xalieri

arkangel

JokerXL

CHESO

taniwha

PrincessJun

billion

itchymoblog

Jane Doe

kyoob

MaggieD

Spiderbaby / Freakdog

TiliaAmericana

Dhamaka

XelenarendezvousX

George w/Blue Eyes

Rachel

Sprocket

Tori

silar31

Mandy

Puddlepuff

Judo-Jule

OJ

beth

Alfie

Rich

Joe

Steve

Uber-Spy

swamprose

RareAquaticBadger

Euphro

bfish

mara

AmericanFriend

CRAFT

Strange Little Girl

Spike

Toddy

Damage

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Recent visitors

Love in a cold climate

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1. Where are you and why?

I’m in East Anglia in the UK because I got my first job after college here eighteen years ago – I only came for five years, but one thing led to another. It’s been touch and go at times, job wise, but so far I’m still here and in the same organisation. I’m originally from Ireland and grew up and went to college there.

2. How did you find moblog? What made you become a moblogger?

I found it through a BBC News article on the new craze of moblogging in 2005. This was the very first moblog post I saw, Lyzardly having just returned from an epic drive from New York to Iowa and back to see the original scroll of Jack Kerouac’s “On The Road”, although I didn’t know that at the time. I was very nervous as I made my first moblog post. I expected somebody to challenge me or to tell me to go away, but to my surprise my very dull test picture of a rock was met with a lovely welcome from Joe. I actually waited about two weeks before posting again, to even more encouragement, and I’ve never looked back. It was the feedback and the wonderful sense of community that made me become a moblogger, although I probably didn’t realise I was one straight away. Moblogger is now one of the ways I define myself to others, along with scientist/geologist and photographer, so it is a pretty fundamental part of my life.

3. You have spent a lot of time in Antarctica. What is the best part of these trips for you, what do you miss when you’re there and what advice would you give to someone travelling out there?

The best part of the trips is the opportunity to photograph such a beautiful place. It’s very difficult to take a bad picture. Having spanned the film to digital era in my visits there I would say that digital is wonderful in the snow. I miss my family when I’m there, and ice cream. To anyone going there I would say, invest in the best camera you can afford and lots of memory cards, you won’t regret a penny of it.

4. Do you think moblog has changed since you started blogging, and do you have any favourite memories/moments?

The essence of Moblog has remained the same – the wonderful community spirit – so I am amazed that the number of users of the site has not grown more. I remember asking site owner mat early on what he would do if Moblog took off, like other blogging and sharing sites were at the time and I fully expected it to. It’s definitely bigger now but it has not lost that village feel, compared to the metropolis of Flickr, for example.

Favourite memories/moments are way too many to list them all. The punning posts, led by Helen, Steve and others have made me roar with laughter. I love Maggie’s posts and wonderful drawings. Other memories are, fighting the catblogging ban, which happened quite early on, was great fun, and being a part of We’re Not Afraid, which was my first experience of the power of Moblog. Meeting people in real life has been a wonderful and unexpected pleasure and I think that there is no other way that I would or could have met so many like-minded people or made such good friends. Sharing people’s joys and sadnesses is another special aspect of the site, and I feel humbled in the light of what some people face in their lives with good humour and good grace. I feel very privileged to be a moderator, not that my intervention is often needed. Life has become a lot busier since I joined Moblog, and I don’t get to comment on other people’s posts as much as I would like.

5. You’re probably one of the only mobloggers who have actually experienced a desert island disc-style scenario (albeit your desert island is made out of a huge chunk of ice). If you could only choose a couple of CDs, movies and books, which would you go for?

That’s quite a hard one, but I will give it a go. For music, I would bring Abbey Road, particularly for the B side (in old vinyl terms), Neon Bible by The Arcade Fire, and, finally, Jordan: The Comeback by Prefab Sprout. In terms of films, all a bit mainstream but ones I’ve watched many times, I would take The Fifth Element, Groundhog Day and The Matrix. When it comes to books, my first choice would be A Fire Upon the Deep, by Vernor Vinge, my copy of which is very well thumbed, then Gravity’s Rainbow by Thomas Pynchon, and finally Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison.

6. You are one of the many food-bloggers out there on moblog. What would be your best three signature dishes?

Colcannon (an Irish traditional dish involving mashed potato, curly kale, bacon and red onion, often salted with a few wrapped coins for luck), homemade pumpkin pie, and chicken fajitas.

7. What have been your best moments/memories in the last month, year and decade?

Goodness, where to start. In the last month, finding independent confirmation that a scientific idea that a friend and I have been developing is probably right and tells us something new about the deep internal composition of the Earth. In the last year, which has been quite a bad one, really, taking part in Shoot London and keeping my job. Over the past decade, getting married to the most wonderful person, who is also my best friend and soulmate, and, I kid you not, finding Moblog, which changed my life in a different way but also for the better.

8. If you had to make a time capsule that would remain sealed for 200 years, what items would you fill it with?

Wow, that’s an interesting one. I think that I would include a lot of ephemera, something that features from time to time in my Moblog. So much everyday stuff never gets preserved. The future discoverer would be bemused to find a random collection of packaging, train and bus tickets, photographs of street scenes, house interiors both tidy and untidy, fridge and cupboard contents, etc.

9. Do you have any vices/guilty pleasures?

Ice cream is probably the main one. I can’t seem to make people understand that it is one of the staple foods.

10. How did you get into photography? How has your style changed/evolved?

I’ve always had a love of capturing an image. If I didn’t have a camera I would draw. I got my first camera when I was about ten, completely randomly, from an uncle who was visiting us in our new house at the time. It was plastic and used 120 roll-film and I think that I convinced my mother to buy and let me shoot two rolls of black-and-white film before I lost the lens (which was one of my early heartbreaks). Still, there are some of the only pictures of one of my sisters as a baby and some fascinating shots of my mother’s home city without traffic or traffic lights, as a result.

My next camera, a Praktika manual SLR was a graduation present from my mother in 1985. I bought myself a Halina disc camera at the same time and, ever since, I’ve always carried an SLR and a compact with me, now joined by a camphone, of course. If you ask anyone who knows me, they will tell you that I am an obsessive photographer. I plagued all of my friends all through college, and was the scourge of parties – although the pictures were generally appreciated later on. The rate at which I take pictures has steadily gone up over the years, particularly fuelled by digital and the arrival of children, but even in the days of film, I took over 12,000 shots in 16 years before switching to digital. Nowadays I take that many in about four months.

Stylistically, I feel I still have an awful lot to learn. I’m just about technically competent with a camera but finding out more all the time. I love that thrill you feel when you get a good shot – it’s quite visceral and totally addictive. It has fuelled a lot of investment in second-hand equipment over the past year and a half. I do think much more about composition than I ever did, but it is still not instinctive for me. I’ve learned a huge amount in this regard from Moblog and I’m very grateful to everyone who shares their pictures here. I’ve even tried to express this in a post which still holds true after four years. I’d like to finish by saying again thank you, thank you all for making Moblog such a wonderful and supportive place in which to explore the delights of capturing the world in an image.

Posted by Euphro

17th Jul 2009, 07:25   | tags:,,

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taniwha says:

Thanks for this Euphro. I agree that Moblog still feels like a village and that's part of it appeal. I liked looking at your first post which made me think that even the first time we dip our toes into the Moblog water, we can express something quite core about who we are.

17th Jul 2009, 07:39

nige says:

Thanks Euphro. You've made my Friday before 9am; I can go through the rest of the day with a smile :D

Great interview, and I particularly liked number 7.

Considering we've been moblog members so long, it was a genuine pleasure to finally meet you at Shoot London this year. I know how difficult it was for you to get away on that day, so it was great that you could make it.

Great questions RAB. It's great that everyone is putting their stamp on them. Love it.

17th Jul 2009, 09:00

nige says:

Oh, that last link doesn't work btw. I'd like to see that post :)

17th Jul 2009, 09:01

Factotum says:

The links aren't working for me either. Tantalizing. i really enjoyed reading the interview and now want more!

17th Jul 2009, 12:24

Sprocket says:

fabulous interview

I'm going to go back now and peek through your blog from the beginning – I just gotta see that first rock :-)

17th Jul 2009, 13:36

Euphro says:

Links all work now - pesky Word and its smart quotes :D

17th Jul 2009, 13:54

Dhamaka says:

What a wonderful interview

I remember that post Euphro. Often think back to it. Didn't really appreciate it at the time but O.M.G I do now - in terms of photography and community

I love Vernor Vinge but haven't actually read that book so will order it the very next time I visit Amazon

Regarding 2 - so do I. In fact I think I once lost a potential boyfriend because he couldn't understand moblogging (or wouldn't). His choice, not mine.

I agree completely with the punning posts. They seem to happen less nowadays but are just as valuable when they do

Love your other Desert Island choices too

I was sorry to hear your last year hasn't been good, loved reading what you say about Mrs Euphro and wish you better times, as much love, ice cream and moblogging as you desire in the years to come

17th Jul 2009, 14:20

Viv says:

Hey this is a great read and I remember that post without having to look... :)

You are one of the people who sum up all that is good about moblog.

Glad to hear your work is paying off - must be a great thrill

x

18th Jul 2009, 09:59

cariadus says:

Love this. Great to get to know more about fellow mobloggers. I love the village feel of Moblog too. Wish I'd discovered it 4 years ago instead of 4 months ago.

Neon Bible and Fifth Element would be on my list too.

18th Jul 2009, 12:06

queserasara says:

Oh I love this as much as I love your blogs - they always make me stop & either laugh or think. Now I have to add 2 new books to my reading list. I'm so glad you made it to shoot London even if we were on rival teams. QssX

18th Jul 2009, 16:09

beth says:

lovely to read yep.

20th Jul 2009, 20:12

nige says:

Who's got next?

24th Jul 2009, 09:58

Euphro says:

Wait and see :D

I don't think that you will be disappointed.

24th Jul 2009, 10:07

nige says:

:D Hurry up next person!

24th Jul 2009, 11:24

Great answers Euphro! I wasn't sure if I was being overly obscure with some of the questions.

It's funny how similar everyone's experience of moblog is; question 4 comes up in one guise or another in every interview, and I almost always find myself nodding while reading the answer!

28th Jul 2009, 01:01

MaggieD says:

I am just catching up with all that I have missed ..... so pleased that you have been chosen ..... and thank you so much for mentioning my blog :)

Great interview, and I love the pic, it is just how I visualise you (but in my mind you have a much bigger lens) ......

1st Aug 2009, 20:54

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