“A single conversation across the table with a wise person
is worth a month’s study of books”
It’s Tuesday again and with it comes this week’s Tuesday Talks, my online interview with a woman I admire within the blogging community. The person I chose for you today is Eliza Deacon. She totally drew me in her world through her stunning photographs and kept me there with the powerful way she tells a story. I loved this wonderful post she wrote, about her inner monologue, and the photograph that came with it still brings tears to my eyes.
So I mustered all my courage, asked her for an interview and to my astonishment here it is.
- Tell me a bit about yourself…(as much or as little as you feel comfortable with)
I’m 42 and un-married, though in a long-term relationship and originally from England where I was born and grew up. I’ve lived in Africa now for 16 years, first Botswana and then Tanzania. I think I was planning to travel the world, but I never got past this continent – not that that bothers me at all. It’s only that my mother was born and grew up in India and that was my planned first destination; born out of a need to discover her roots and past. However, it was not to be, Africa – once under your skin – has a very strong hold. I waited a long time, for various reasons, to find my perfect man – a coffee farmer who has never really lived anywhere but Africa and also can imagine no other life. I think we will grow old on this continent and that makes me very happy. Although with that, I hope, comes regular trips back to the UK to catch up with family, young nephews, and sometimes just a bit of normalcy. Photography has always been a passion, through college studies, then working for an international news organization, to traveling, to the odd bits of work for the UK media, to just taking pictures because I love doing it!
- What made you decide to blog?
I only really got into it properly a year or so ago via the wonderful ladies at Vision & Verb . Before that I had only dabbled; I had a picture site up on Shutterchance, which I still have, and created one maybe two blogspot sites which I then promptly deleted. It takes confidence, and faith in yourself, to put yourself out there. Also I at first found the world wide web quite a scary place; I still do in many ways, it’s all so open now and we pour out our hearts to a largely anonymous audience, in the most part. That takes trust and hope that you won’t be found by any ‘bad people’. Having said that, nothing remotely like that has happened to me, albeit with the odd weird spam stuff, and I have found only the most wonderful people. I often feel that I live in a bit of a cultural void out here, this could be slightly self-inflicted, as I’m not so much a ‘joiner’ of things, and who knows what happens beyond our own little world. But, through the web I have found so many like-minded people and new friends, I’ve learned so much, been inspired by so much, and I think it’s really helped me to up my game.
- How do you juggle family life and blogging?
Well, its not so much family life unless you count the four-legged and feathered ones: three dogs, two cats, 6 ducks, one house chicken and lots of other fowl – we live on a farm!! But blogging and spending time on ‘me’ things are heavily compromised at the moment as we have no internet at home and of late I have been traveling a lot; had to go to the Serengeti for a photo job, then back, then out to the Serengeti again and then next week down to South Africa. At the moment, it’s work craziness – I work for a small safari company just outside Arusha – that is keeping me busy. It’s all fun and rewarding, but I have less me time than normal and it does start to bother me.
- Do you remember the first comment on your blog?
Sadly I don’t but I think it was probably someone being very kind and supportive towards my first web foray, probably a family member 🙂
- What did you discover about yourself while blogging?
That I’m more confident that I sometimes give myself credit for!
That writing is almost as important to me as taking pictures (both my mother and grandmother were writers, my grandmother published novels about her life in India).
That I enjoy seeing my work on various sites – it used to horrify me, but I’ve got used to it now 🙂
I am very thankful to Eliza to have taken the time to answer those questions, as I know she is busy travelling everywhere in Africa, for different assignments. Those interviews are turning out to be quite an interesting feature and I am thinking of doing more of them.
What do you think?