I'm so new to blogging that as I go through other sites, I'm amazed by things they have probably forgotten all about. The format for most blogs is mostly identical, but the look of my page is something I give a lot of thought. I want to come up with a more professional header which features a logo of some kind. An identifying mark that I can feel proud to have people associate me with. I guess you could say I'm trying to work out how to "brand" myself.
With all these changes on my mind, I found a nice string of compliments over the header picture of the boys. I actually picked it for a reason and even with the blur and simple lettering over it, I love this picture. So for all those with the question, "How did you manage to capture them in that almost perfect sort of way?" You'll be happy to know that the answer is dumb luck.
If you're reading this post, there's a pretty big chance you've never read this one which is the first post I ever made of this incarnation of my blog. Don't feel bad about it, this is not a guilt trip. I know a few people (in real life!) who've had personal and even professional success via blogging, and while I don't think I've ever pressured myself to instantly rise to their level, I continue to push out of my comfort zone and share my life with people. The first big step for me was telling people that I was writing, and that's what that first post was for me. Pressure to keep going. The first four times I started this process I never told a soul and that includes Melissa. Deleting everything became like pressing the reset button on my old Nintendo system, no save points allowed. So if sharing the existence of the blog with people was my "step one" then "step two" was the set up of my facebook page, and to me that was all about the profile and cover picture.
The profile picture idea came right away. Knowing that I had no idea for a logo or brand mark, I wanted it to be a picture of me. After all, regardless of the chance that someday I'll have a manufactured logo for people to identify me with, the identity is still me. So it's just me screaming in that "how long till naptime?" frustrated kind of way, and it's something I hoped parents would get a laugh from but also just "get."
The idea for the cover photo took some real thought. What I decided on was a nice, sweet picture of the boys. I liked the idea that they'd look so sweet and innocent and then there would be the mad man flipping out for seemingly no reason at all. That seems to be how most people get to see the boys. This small glance into our world in which two perfect angels are being watched over by the odd, kind of grimy looking guy who is talking to himself a bit too much.
So I took our camera out (yes, the one William has basically ruined) and put it on a tripod hoping to cut some of the built-in blur that has happened ever since William got a hold of it. Then I moved to the "easy" task of getting the boys to sit next to each other on the stairs for just long enough to take the picture. Over and over I failed. Carter would run after me as I would move back to the camera, and then cry when I put him back next to his brother. William was content to sit on the stairs but wanted space from Carter, so he would move down a row...and up...down...whatever it took to get away. I, of course, was being extremely helpful by saying things like, "William! Get back in frame!" or, "Carter, you really need to keep your chin a little higher!"
I'm a pretty legit photographer.
After a couple of minutes, we had all had enough. We dispersed and I popped over to the computer to get a quick look at everything. Honestly, at that point I just wanted something that even remotely resembled a photo of two cute kids. There were lots of Carter in mid-cry, tops of William's head, just the stairs, and the ever present blur from ill-repaired camera. At first glance, I wasn't very happy with any of the resulting photos. It was my urge to get the facebook page set up quickly that kept me in a "pick anything" mentality. So I took a deep breath and looked again, and there it was.
There's just something truthful about this, ya know? William had his face covered because at the time I was making silly noises in an effort to get them to smile a little. In fact, if you look past the golden blur of Carter, you'll see a little bit of a smirk on his face as he looks to his brother for confirmation that it's okay to laugh at daddy. To me, it has just enough insight that they were laughing at me and not with me. They probably knew I was being a bit stupid and rushed about everything, and that's probably not the best attitude to go in with when trying to get two little boys to pose nicely. It speaks to me about parenting, too. There's a great element of joy, but at the same time it's all out of focus. It may not be perfect, but it's real, and that's a pretty cool concept to me. Real and honest, it's how I want this blog to be and two big qualities I want as a parent. So I may be keeping this photo for a while.
Seriously though, I need to do something about replacing the lettering.