Spring Fling: The people

– Posted in: Events
17 comments

Spring Fling logoThe day after I got home from Austin I started on my post about Spring Fling, the first national garden bloggers meet-up. I decided I was not going to go into a lot of detail, but just upload the best of my photos and comment on them. So I forgot that photos are the most time intensive part of a blog post. So I happened to have a lot of photos I wanted to comment on. So I realized that it’s going to be a whole week tomorrow since this event occurred, and I haven’t written a thing about it. So I’d better try a different approach. (This is it.)

And then I realized none of my photos are people photos. And the people I met were the whole point of going.

I’ve been thinking about why I didn’t take pictures of the people I was with, and the answer is, I really prefer candid shots to posed pictures and I really hate pointing a camera at someone I’m talking to. So, no pictures of people. (But I am working on a post with pictures.)

Pam compared Spring Fling to a family reunion, and I saw this similarity, too. The thing that has always frustrated me about family reunions is that you get to talk to a lot of people, briefly, superficially, and you really don’t get much opportunity for lengthy conversation. That applied to Spring Fling, too. As a matter of fact, there were bloggers that I never did introduce myself to, despite my best intentions. I suspected this might happen, and before I left I was afraid I might not get to know anyone, that everyone would remain on the level of small talk.

Fortunately, that didn’t happen either.

Since we out-of-towners kept to the same car and driver throughout the day, those riding together had an opportunity for sustained conversation. And there were opportunities at every meal, and at some of the other events. I really enjoyed myself.

The whole day, and the pre- and post-Spring Fling events, were all extremely well organized. Thank you to Pam and everyone who helped her for a job very well done, and voluntarily, at that.

About the Author

Kathy Purdy is a colchicum evangelist, converting unsuspecting gardeners into colchicophiles. She would be delighted to speak to your group about colchicums or other gardening topics. Kathy’s been writing since 4th grade, gardening since high school, and blogging since 2002.

In the end, this may be the most important thing about frost: Frost slows us down. In spring, it tempers our eagerness. In fall, it brings closure and rest. In our gotta-go world–where every nanosecond seems to count–slowness can be a great gift. So rather than see Jack Frost as an adversary, you could choose to greet him as a friend.

~Philip Harnden in A Gardener’s Guide to Frost: Outwit the Weather and Extend the Spring and Fall Seasons

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Rob (Kathy's brother) April 17, 2008, 10:57 am

As a budding photographer, having that “shyness” of taking people’s pictures is something I wrestle with too, especially of people I am talking with.

There is a middle ground between posed and candid. A casual, “hey, you two stand together and let me get a shot” results in seeing the people’s faces, but not being overly stiff.

Some people fire off randomly trying to get candids and end up with a bunch of blurry and bad shots.

Sometimes I dont feel like taking pictures though

Diana April 13, 2008, 11:20 pm

And I had mostly people shots! Well, maybe 1/2 and 1/2. Largely because I left my husband the good camera for his visiting family and my point and shoot is fine for people candid and less appropriate for interesting plant shots! I love that we can surf around and put together such an amazing overview of the whole experience with everyone’s unique perspective. Can’t wait to see your photos and see what caught your eye. It was great to see you again and thanks for the tech talk and advice.

Bonnie April 13, 2008, 10:34 pm

I agree about the photos. I went mad taking pictures at the gardens we went to but I would have preferred looking back and seeing lots of casual shots of bloggers chatting and laughing. The last thing I needed was one more shot of a cacti!

Dawn April 13, 2008, 2:38 am

I wish I’d had a chance to talk with you more. I think we spoke only briefly. So glad you had a nice time in Austin.

Regarding photos: Most of mine were of the plants & hardscapes. I am thankful for other people’s ‘social’ photos though. They are a lot of fun to see. 🙂

Cheers!
Dawn

bill / prairie point April 12, 2008, 6:27 pm

I was really happy to meet you at last.

Mr. McGregor's Daughter April 12, 2008, 4:57 pm

The same thing happened to me for the same reason, I don’t like the stiff formality of posed shots. I have only a few shots with people in them incidentally. I guess I’ve been well-trained by my relatives who don’t like to be photographed in candids. I’ll have to try harder next time.

Pam/Digging April 12, 2008, 4:04 pm

I’ve really been enjoying each person’s perspective on the Fling. Most of us have mentioned having trouble summarizing it neatly for a blog post, haven’t we? But each post one of us writes helps bring it a little more into focus.

By the way, I finally got my copy of this month’s Horticulture, and your article on the back page was a good read. Well done!

Linda MacPhee-Cobb April 12, 2008, 12:30 pm

It was nice to meet you at Spring Fling.

I have to confess all my photos are garden ones.

I’ve been going back to our mug shots on Digging to get the names and faces and blogs all firmly stuffed in to my brain.

Gail April 12, 2008, 8:44 am

Kathy, every time I read a Spring Flingers’ post I say, “Exactly, exactly what I thought!” We all noticed different plants, we all took different photos , (well some of us forgot to take photos we were in such awe of the gardens), and we all had some different takes on the experiences that add up to an incredibly satisfying to the spirit and senses weekend. Looking forward to your SP post.

Gail

Annie in Austin April 12, 2008, 8:25 am

As one who benefited hugely from the opportunities for sustained conversation with you and Cynthia, thanks again for coming, Kathy!!

We all seemed to notice different things at every location. I’m looking forward to seeing the photos you took.

Annie at the Transplantable Rose

Carol, May Dreams Gardens April 12, 2008, 6:56 am

I have lots of pictures, too, but not enough! Looking back through them, there are both people and places that I would have liked more pictures of.

It was great meeting people face to face after months and years of online interaction.

Kathy Purdy April 12, 2008, 6:54 am

Rachel,
I really appreciated your help “driving” me around Pam’s laptop while I worked with our “client.” Too bad we didn’t get more opportunity to talk shop.

Kathy Purdy April 12, 2008, 6:53 am

Eliz,
I am grateful for all the photos other people took. It wasn’t a conscious decision on my part, but rather something I belatedly discovered after I got home. I plan on asking for copies of my favorite shots to include in my own little photo album. It was great to meet you, too, and I’ve seen you campaigning for Garden Walk.

eliz April 12, 2008, 12:54 am

Yes, I totally agree candids are best, but because of the implication that some didn’t want their picture taken, one had to ask, and that meant a posed picture.

Nonetheless, I made sure to get people shots, even if posed, for exactly the reason you state here.

It was a great weekend, regardless, and great to meet you!

Rachel @ in bloom April 11, 2008, 11:26 pm

P.S. I took lots of pictures, but there wasn’t a single person in any of them. 😉

Rachel @ in bloom April 11, 2008, 11:25 pm

It was great being car-mates and talking techie shop with you, Kathy!