Nezu Shrine and the area surrounding it has become a favorite place for me and my buddy Dave to go shooting. Nezu has great little streets to walk down around on the way to the shrine. The shrine itself is very understated and filled with great colors and scenes if you slow down and enjoy your walk. With the hours I work it can sometimes be difficult to find time to exercise so going for photowalks is a good alternative. I am trying to build one or two gym days into my routine. I am still figuring out my commute to my new office in Marunochi. I hit the gym this evening after work and I am pleasantly surprised I can take two quick trains and get to the Tokyo American Club in about 20 minutes after 2 quick trains and a 10 minute walk. Getting home is similarly easy with a 10 minute walk 2 quick trains and another 10 minute walk.
I don't like Takoyaki (octopus balls) but I do love photographing these signs. I love the color in them. I just find octopus very chewy and not enjoyable to eat.
Today's configuration: Leica M6 with Kodak Ektar 100 film and various lenses.
Dave in action...
A family of foxes...
I think this part of Nezu Shrine is my favorite part. The muted colors of gray and purple is where Ektar film really shines. I have shot about 25 rolls of this film now and I really like it.
I know it is so wrong but a ShootTokyo sticker would be perfect there. Thankfully I have better judgement than that.
This is my favorite shot from the day...
I am always coming up with new hobbies for myself that spawn off of my main hobby of photography. That is really something I love about photography. You can go in so many directions once you start; digital photography, film photography, printing, post processing, camera collecting, blogging and the list goes on.
Blogging has quickly become another hobby that came from my photography. Naturally after you start blogging you look for ways for your blog to become more popular so you can share your work with more people. Popularity of your blog is often measured in traffic and subscribers. I have never really paid much attention to where traffic comes from or put any real focused effort on driving more traffic. Recently I been reading up on Search Engine Optimization which is the process of making sure your website is optimized to be found when someone searches for particular subject related to your blog. It is not only about being found but being found as close to the top as possible as this has a material impact if people find and click on your link. It is also what the link and description says when it shows up in Google or Yahoo that lets the search know that the content is relevant to their search and is something they want to see.
The more I research this topic the more fascinating it is to me. The top 3 results returned in a search from Google or Yahoo will get 90% of all of the clicks from the searchers. There are simple things you can do in naming your blog posts, how you write them and some other structural factors that will have a material impact on your rankings. This can be a very confusing topic to learn as there are many 'experts' out there that claim know the 'secrets' to high rankings. There really aren't any secrets. It boils down to creating good content, having a good solid technical structure to support SEO but the number of experts and misinformation can be overwhelming when you first get started looking into this. I have been lucky enough to weed through this and find a few good resources as well as get great advice from a reader who is actually an SEO consultant.
If any of you have websites I highly suggest using Wordpress SEO by Yoast. The plugin is free for self hosted Wordpress sites and will color code red, yellow, green your SEO for you on each post. Sadly I need to go back through my 600 past posts and clean up some of the titles, URLs and meta descriptions. I really wish this was something I understood starting out so I could have done it correctly from the beginning. Yoast has a great write up on basics of SEO with a lot of little tips that were really easy to implement on my site. If this topic is interesting to you I highly recommend it.
If you are really interested on making some improvements to your blog try signing up for Moz. It is a paid service that will crawl your site just like Google or Yahoo robots and tell you everything that you can improve. The first time it on my site and gave me a report I felt like I was kicked in the stomach. It found 140 dead links! 140 links that if people click it says 'page not found'. Yuck! Sorry for those of you that may have clicked them. I quickly fixed those and then started working through the very long list of issues, warning, suggestions and recommendations for improvement. The report runs once a week and today I got my updated report and was pleased to see the improvements. All of this is the backend of blogging but very interesting new aspect to me.
I hope you found this interesting! Thanks for stopping by today...