After eighteen months of wine blog experimentation, I am sincerely grateful for my loyal and wonderful readership. Many thanks for your enthusiasm in reading my blog and for tolerating my dry Irish wit, wonkish tendencies and nonsensical banter. Thanks for your perseverance!
After much thought and reflection, Musings by the Glass will hereafter set a new course. The new expedition is not entirely uncharted. Some aspects will feel familiar. Others, however, may not.
I want to briefly explain the new focus for Musings. And to enhance your reading pleasure, I provide a few photos ... of monkeys. Because whimsical monkeys are fun.
Okay, monkey business complete. We press onward.
Big announcement time. Moving forward, Musings by the Glass will no longer be a wine blog. [Insert shock and awe]. This, in essence, means there will no longer be wine reviews, wine recommendations, or tasting/buying guides. I have discovered a new “glass” through which I will explore the world and its many narratives.
Or, perhaps more accurately, I am returning to the “glass” that has always truly been my looking glass into the world: the camera lens. I see the world best when I hold a camera to my eye.
The blog started as a passion for photography and photojournalism. I love how photography can evoke a powerful emotional response and dialogue, and how it affords a visual expression of social commentary (whether positive or negative). Photography helps me to stop and observe, to think, to engage with the world around me.
The blog became a method to put into words the narrative I was attempting to capture through the lens. The lens and the pen are my tools to view life with greater clarity, and to help others to do the same.
In all of my photojournalism and writing, the foundation has been to learn about and experience cultures different from my own, to understand and appreciate them on a more intimate level, and to share them with anyone who is willing to listen.
But culture is complex. It is shaped by many things, including geography, philosophy, religion, economics, politics, and cuisine. It can be beautiful and inspiring; it can be ugly and unfair. My photojournalism has attempted to convey the depth and complexity of culture in the Pacific Rim. My blog, unfortunately, has not.
Food and wine has been the glass through which I have attempted to explore cultural narratives. Musings, however, was never intended to be chiefly about wine. But at some point along the way, wine became the dominant topic. And why not?! Wine is fun. It invites community and conversation. There is plenty to enjoy and learn. That narrow scope, however, painted an incomplete picture. Culture goes well beyond the culinary context, and I began to feel restricted in what I could explore.
I have thus decided to re-focus my blog on photojournalism and street photography in Hawaii and the broader Asia Pacific region. The majority of comments I have received relate to my photography, so this seems a more worthwhile emphasis for my energy and attention. When done well, photojournalism can also convey amazing stories and emotions in ways that words cannot. One may not necessarily be inclined to read a 1,500 word [wonkish] essay. A provocative photograph, however, cannot easily be forgotten. It compels a response.
For my philosophy on photography see my Portfolio, which provides short vision statements for each category of work. I intend to provide more themed photo essays of place, purpose, and narrative. And perhaps best of all, less reading for everyone!
My writing will be less frequent, shorter [huzzah!], and cover a broader range of cultural issues that I encounter in my personal reading, travels and discussions.
Will I still write about food and wine? Absolutely. I am passionate about both, and I love exploring the interplay between cuisine and culture. There are many incredible farmers, fishermen, restauranteurs, and brewers in Hawaii and abroad. I still want to tell their stories. There will certainly still be food and wine photography. That glass, however, is only half full. While food and wine is interesting, there are many other vibrant and fascinating aspects of culture to explore.
I want to challenge myself to think objectively and critically, to constantly learn, to grapple with intriguing and difficult questions. I want to take photographs that capture candid moments of life objectively and honestly, that evoke emotion, that compel reflection. I want my writings to ponder the issues faced by communities in the Pacific Rim. And I want to embrace it all with grace, truth and openness.
If you want to follow me on my photography sojourn and dive deeper into the culture of Hawaii and the Asia Pacific region, I would encourage you to subscribe to the email list and follow along. Please also comment and share. These images and stories are intended to spark a response and dialogue. I hope we can learn together!
And you can start right now. What do you think about the new course?
Many thanks again for journeying with me.