State Of Things at 50ft HQ

Hi! It has been long enough at this point to warrant a little check in, how has John been doing? post. It’s something I try to avoid because posts like these feel like big excuses to as why nothing else has made its way across these pages in so long.

Well, first of all, lately my 50ft energy has lived on in slow motion via, old school, stamp sticking, IRL mail in the 50ft Print Club which is alive and well despite perpetually being a couple of weeks behind sending out each print. I am on the 32nd print at this point in the series and thats so hard for me to believe. It has been such a joy to sign and send these out to points all around the world each month.

Something dawned on me recently though, outside of my initial launch two and a half years ago I have done zero promotion for the series, well nothing outside the occasional mention on instagram or the little link there on the home page of the site so I wanted to call it out here today. I suppose I didn’t want to feel like I was burdening visitors. It’s true, I am not a particularly good salesman.

When I started up the Print Club idea I chose a $7 a month entry point for the cost because thats what it took to break even and bring in enough profit each month to put toward the prints, envelopes, and stamps then have enough left to also cover hosting and any odd domain renewal that may come to pass. As time went on I decided to quietly reduce the cost of the series to $5 a month for new sign ups because I felt it wouldn’t hurt too much on the back end and may give a few new people the opportunity to sign up for a while and get some snail mail from yours truly every now and then.

The new lower cost still stands and I would be humbled and thankful to see a few new faces come to the fold. Members have come and gone through the past couple of years but the total base has continued to hold steady enough to keep the series alive. I currently have print overruns starting to turn into a formidable little tower of prints on a shelf and I am always wishing they had a good home to go to so any new subscribers will also get as many back log prints as I can comfortably fit into the envelope the first month to get caught up.

As for digital perks, I will admit I have been dragging my feet but there is a nice solid collection of HD copies of wallpapers in the Gumroad user library ready and willing to be snatched up and I still have a slowly building collection of cropped and ready images that I am planning on releasing as a pack that will also be added as soon as I manage to get that finished up.

Let’s move onto the future. I have a few things weighing on my mind when it comes to my personal creative projects. First photography, why many of you keep checking back after all these years. Its sad to say but I don’t have a day to day digital camera outside of my iPhone and have not had one for quite a while. My trusty Fuji X-Pro up and died a long while back and I have not had an opportunity to replace it. My wife, YoungDoo has a Canon 5DII and III in her work kit but I often don’t want to keep it out of her reach because she actively uses the rig for work projects day to day. I do carry various film cameras with me and have a number of exposed rolls lined up but I am really missing having a fully functioning digital camera around.

As you could imagine, it has had a big impact on 50ft and how often I have new images to share among these pages. I am slowly making my way through back catalogue images from trips but I really miss capturing little bits of life and objects to share here.

I have considered running some kind of crowd funding to raise the $2k I need to jump back in with what I would like to settle into next, a Sony a7II paired with a Voigtlander 35mm or 40mm f/1.2). I just cant bring myself to do it. I could use books or prints or memberships or something as rewards for helping but the production cost of those items would raise the goal by quite a bit and I have this senseless anxiousness that is afraid to fail so I simply wait until life blesses me with an opportunity to jump back in.

So, for now, I will continue to pull from my archives and borrow the 5DIII on occasion (which I did recently and have something new to put up!).

Second, my humble music project. I lean on making music more and more since the death of my camera. Some of you may remember I released an album a couple of years back digitally and on cassette and I really enjoyed putting it together. While that was more a loose, random collection of tracks assembled for the fun of releasing some music, I have a new album that has been more or less finished for about a year now that I am genuinely proud of and am ready to jump in and release.

It has a short story paired with it and I am working on selling the album digitally and also paired with a small zine sized book containing photos and the story. It has been through a dozen or so revisions but I am hoping to finally jump in and get the thing out into he wild. I am also tossing around the idea of taking group buy style orders for a lathe cut vinyl version but we’ll see how that pans out, short run vinyl is maddeningly expensive. My goal is to get this released in the fall and by mentioning it here I hope to feel a little more permanence to the idea and get it done.

Also in music, I have a new 50ft Radio mix finished, it has been for a couple of months now but I need time to assemble it and get it out to you guys on the podcast feed.

Which brings me to frustrating little technical issues. The unlisted podcast feed does work but from time to time my Droplr hosted files will stop wanting to allow direct downloads so I do my best to keep up fixing them so they can all be downloaded to a podcast app for enjoyment. Then there is the images on the site here, I have had a number of reports that images are not loading, it seems to work for many but not all and it’s most certainly due to security certificates but I have not had a good amount of time to attend to it and figure out where the problem lies. Thanks for the patience there!

While this custom theme of mine has had some seriously long legs and is as dead simple as it could manage to be, I am starting to wonder if it’s time to refresh it to get it fully compatible with the latest versions of wordpress and possibly refresh the look. There are some glaring holes in its logic like my never ending archive button but all in all I’d say the design has aged well!
SO, as time moves on and hopefully I start to see a little extra free time to put into personal projects again (September was one of the busiest work months I have had in ages) you should start seeing a few new things around here again.

I don’t think I need to go into how busy life continues to be while managing an event production department and doing my best to be a good dad for my 3 year old, Milla. Seems not really the point of writing today. For those who have left heartwarming comments and sent emails while things have been slow, thank you, truly, from the bottom of my heart. It has meant the world to me to see that this site has had a positive impact on the world in its own little ways and I cant wait to get back to posting regularly again.

Even in this weird moment in technology where tiny blurbs of information and headlines rule the short attention span yet high expectation landscape, I think there is plenty of room for slow paced personal websites and blogs to hang out like wallflowers in the distance. Speaking of which, does anyone have one i should be following along with in my RSS feed?

See you soon.

XO

-John

Comments

  1. Hund - October 1, 2019 at 4:26 pm

    I follow a lot of blogs and websites, I’m just not sure they’re anything for you though. :) What other things do you find interesting in general?

  2. John Carey - October 1, 2019 at 4:40 pm

    You know, I think I’ve been on the look out for honest sites. Run with genuine passion, without the tricks or trappings of the “modern” web, and that have a sense of insight and purpose without a bloated sense of self worth or a tendency to fill its pages simply to keep the clicks pouring in.

    Haha, ok yeah that was a bit heavy. Key word is honesty.

    Could be a personal blog. Photo stream. Podcast. Whatever. Even your own!

    I just want to know there are others out there still using the web in ways that I remember having so much fun exploring for so many years before social media took it all over and flatlined its sense of genuine personality separated from celebrity.

    Whew. You caught me during a philosophical moment.

  3. Tim Sondrup - October 1, 2019 at 11:39 pm

    John, your blog is one of the few that I take the time to carefully read whenever a new post is published. You aim for honesty in your content, and that’s one reason of many why I am a longtime reader. I hope you find the time to fully embrace the creative endeavors that you’re seeking and that you find fulfillment the time spent with your family.

  4. Amy Sakurai - October 3, 2019 at 11:57 pm

    John, I am always delighted by any post you publish here, regardless of frequency. I don’t receive notifications (and don’t follow RSS feeds), so I simply peek in every now and then. And sometimes I’m pleasantly surprised – like today. Please continue to post at your own pace, on whatever topic you see fit. Thanks for all that you’ve shared in the past!

  5. Hund - October 4, 2019 at 2:30 pm

    My English site can be found on https://hund0b1.gitlab.com. :)

    Some websites/blogs that I follow:

    * https://redbeanspace.blog
    * https://thomasbaart.nl
    * http://www.thelins.se/johan/blog
    * https://an3223.github.io
    * https://ccameron.gitlab.io/linuxforpoets
    * https://hellricer.github.io
    * https://write.privacytools.io/paulakreuzer
    * https://plaintextproject.online
    * http://www.ikeahackers.net
    * https://geoff.greer.fm
    * https://tuxphones.com
    * https://www.pine64.org
    * https://www.plasma-mobile.org
    * http://www.40percent.club

    Some are more or less updated than others. :)

  6. John Carey - October 4, 2019 at 3:13 pm

    Perfect, thanks for sharing! I’ll dig into all of these.

  7. Hund - October 4, 2019 at 5:32 pm

    Ops! It’s https://hund0b1.gitlab.io. :)

  8. Will Musgrove - October 6, 2019 at 9:39 pm

    John, I’ve always enjoyed following your work over the years. Curious, what attracts you to the Voigtlander lens? Any particular reason?

  9. John Carey - October 7, 2019 at 11:56 am

    Here you go Will: https://fiftyfootshadows.net/2019/10/07/voigtlander-glass/

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