Please note: Little London Observationist blog will no longer be updated. Please find me over on Little Observationist instead.
On May 17, 2009 – exactly five years ago today – I started Little London Observationist with a single photo of a corner shop window on Kilburn Lane. The message in the window said: “Newspapers, Stamps, Sandwitches”. It was the beginning of my hunt for the little things, the small observations of life in this city that was still very new to me at the time.
Over the next five years, LLO grew and grew to the point where I was posting seven days a week at one point. The posts grew longer, full of stories as I explored more of London and got to know some of the people who have called this city home. One of my favourite parts of building this blog was the people who brought it to life. I interviewed 87 artists for the London Art Spot series and 83 additional Londoners for Listen to a Londoner and all of them inspired me in one way or another.
I wrote 1,084 posts, just about all of them full of original photography. I met many fascinating people through LLO and blogger events, some of whom I became friends with in the real world. It has been an incredible way to discover my adopted city as an expat.
It is bittersweet to announce that I have decided this will be my last post on Little London Observationist.
When I first moved to London in 2007, I spent every single weekend, spare moments after work and sometimes even lunch breaks running around the city with my camera, hopping on to buses heading to destinations with which I was unfamiliar and alighting at the most random stops. I wanted to find the hidden gems, the tiny quirky cafes and the colourful back streets. And I did.
And in making those discoveries, I carved out the parts of the city that I really connected with and that helped me to change my London from the sprawling metropolis that it is to a place I can call home. Now, after living here for seven years, I still crave new discoveries, but I also long for familiarity – places that are mine, that I can return to over and over again, where the people making my tea know my order by heart, where people in my favourite shops welcome me back with a smile, where I have a seat by the window in cafe that always makes me feel inspired every time I sit there. I have these things now and I’m really enjoying them. Maybe it’s because I turned 30 in December, but London feels cosier now, less intimidating, but still exciting with the world at my fingertips.
The honest truth is that running all over the city on public transport every second of my free time no longer appeals quite as much as it did to me before. Sometimes yes, but not enough to create enough compelling content from all over the city for LLO as consistently as I used to. I also find that I travel a bit more these days, I have other projects I’m working on and different interests that I’d like to focus on that don’t fit in with the content and vision of LLO.
I’ve had a blog on one platform or another since 2002 and I’m not going to stop anytime soon. It’s a real passion for me (and possibly an addiction). And so, this is simply a change of direction to match my change of focus. As most of you probably already know, I started writing Little Observationist in April 2013. I update three times a week. I post London content there, but there’s also photography from my travels, the little things from everyday life and recipes too. I welcome you all to follow me there, say hello and let me know you came through LLO.
What of the content from the last five years of Little London Observationist? It will stay here. The blog will stay live as people stop by every day for the archived posts. I also hope, at some point after my wedding this year, to start compiling some of the best bits into a book. If you are or know of an editor / publisher who would like to work with me on this project, please get in touch. You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Most importantly, I’d like to end this last post by saying thank you to all of you who have contributed to LLO through interviews, guest posts or photos and to those of you who have followed me on my journey here for the last five years. Your comments and friendship have made it all entirely worth it and I hope to see you over on Little Observationist as well!
As a thank you to those of you who follow me over to the new blog, I’m going to give away one of the canvas prints that was featured in my solo exhibition in November. It’s a photograph of Big Ben and the lamp posts South Bank, worth £300. The link will take you to Etsy where you can see the measurements and the story behind it. A winner will be selected at random from those who enter and notified by email.
1.) Subscribe to updates from Little Observationist either through Feedly or another RSS reader or by entering your email address in the box at the top right of the blog.
2.) Like Little Observationist on Facebook.
3.) Leave a comment and let me know you’d like to enter! Be sure to leave your email address.
Saturday, May 24, 2014 (This giveaway is now closed. Congrats to Ian of London Unveiled!)