Monday, May 12, 2008

Editorial 001: A Statement of Purpose

Ten days is probably a very tiny measure of time in exploring such an interesting subject as photography. Nevertheless, a step taken in an exploration should never be measured lightly, no matter how small. After all, a wise man says, a journey of a thousand miles begins with a small step.

It’s ten days since this blog was lauched. Although traffic is still not very significant, I'm happy that it’s showing an upward trend. It began with only six hit. Now, it’s about twenty per day and is increasing. For this, I’d like to express my gratitude and appreciation to those who have visited, read, and made the time to comment on the postings. You are the reason why this blog was made in the first place. And it is you and your support that will be the reason for its continued existence. Without you, the words and pictures in this blog will be just a silent and meaningless token.

A few changes have taken place for the past ten days. All of them with you in mind. The most obvious is probably the blog’s description. I find “what you need to know about photography and photographers” too big, unrealistic, and patronizing. Who am I to tell you what you need to know, much less the one who is going to give you the answers to all your questions? I don’t know that much, even about something that I’m so passionate about like photography. I’ll probably learn more from you than you from me. As a member of the community, all I can do is share what I have the way you have shared yours. In the word sharing, there is “togetherness” – a sense that each of us is just the building block of a community who, with shared responsibilities and concerted efforts, could achieve something bigger than that that an individual could do on his/her own. Hence, I have chosen “exploring and understanding photography” in its stead.

This new description, I think, fits better to the objective of blogging, which has given us means to democratically voice our individuality and at the same time share whatever uniqueness we have as a meaningful contribution to the betterment of the community.

An exploration may be carried out individually. But what we learn from that exploration – the understanding part – cannot be achieved in whole without sharing it with others. Here I’m sharing with you my exploration in photography, and when you do the same, together we’ll have a more complete picture – a better understanding – of it.

Apart from that significant change (significant because it embodies some sort of “philosophical” view) and some insignificant changes like the layout and contents, other things will remain the same, at least for the time being. I will, for example, still post in Indonesian and English. I have my own reasons for that; but, again, it’s you that I keep in mind.

I view language as a bridge. My postings in Bahasa Indonesia in this case will serve as a vessel that brings the wealth of information available in English to those readers who are not conversant enough in the language. On the other hand, the English postings will offer those who do not speak Indonesian a peek into what’s uniquely Indonesian. Thus, communication is enhanced and understanding achieved. I could of course post exclusively in either language and reap the benefits each offers in terms of readership, popularity, and perhaps even some financial rewards. But I believe that the advantage of posting in both languages will outweigh the other option I have.

I hope you will still enjoy visiting this blog in the days, months, and years to come as I no doubt will do exploring yours.

Eki Qushay Akhwan

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