Friday Chit Chat #1

I’ve felt pressured to take high quality photos with all my blog posts recently because that’s what you’re supposed to do, right? You need the graphics to keep people scrolling? Well, I think it’s a little more than that. People like reading a story; they like reading your story. So, I’m going to start writing Friday Chit Chats where I just tell you about my week. I might include photos from my Instagram or links to things I shouldn’t have bought online. It also might include some sage words after I make a huge life mistake or a new pun that I recently discovered, or came up with myself [highly unlikely]. I’ve discovered that pun making is one skill that I absolutely do not have.

I’m just going to write. In the times of blogging as business owners, I think the writing side can get lost. You get focused on supreme blog photos and crazy amounts of social media promotion that you forget about the story. Also, side note: I’ll be focusing in on lifestyle and college content on Tuesdays and Thursdays and may pop in some photography and blogging posts if I’m feeling inspired. These are going to be so easy to write, and I’m so excited. So, here’s how my week went.


MOVING OUT

I moved out of my apartment. Isn’t that crazy? My first college apartment is already a phase of my life that has come and gone. RADICAL. I’m excited for my senior year in a slightly different living situation, but also kinda nervous because this will be my last apartment before potentially moving to a new city?! I’m really looking into living in Nashville, TN; Austin, TX; or Dallas, TX. I’m not really sure why the obsession with Texas, but it’s been swirling in my head for a while now. Maybe, I’m just a true Texan at heart? I did spend my entire summer there last year.

My mom has redone my old room at my parent’s house and it’s everything I wish it would have been when I was still living there. It’s so easy to shoot blog photos and Youtube videos in there because it’s so aesthetically pleasing. The gray and white combos match my new suitcases so perfectly too. Yeah, I hate myself but I got those suitcases. I felt like I wanted my own set because I plan to do a ton of traveling in the next few years and wanted a pretty good set.

CALI DREAMING

So, ICYMI I’m going to California for 8 weeks this summer. I leave today! I’m probably on a plane as you read this. I am so excited for everything about this opportunity. My project is so exciting, my mentor seems super cool, and I don’t know if I could have picked anywhere more picturesque than San Diego, CA. Now, just looking for blogging friends to show me what the locals do there.

Also, I’m in the middle of planning my trip to LA with some friends from Chapel Hill and that’s another experience that I’m super excited for. I don’t even care if I do all the touristy things while I’m there. I think in LA it’s more expected than maybe anywhere else. Mostly just excited for the increase in Instagram feed level that is going to happen because there will be so much to snap pictures of!

WE’RE BACK

Truthfully, our stats had been down for months. Between a hazy semester schedule and not posting for weeks at a time, it’s what we would have expected when it came to social media growth and our page views. When you put so much work into something, seeing it fail can be hard. Which is why I think we’re finally ready to buckle down and start coming up with content prepped and planned to send out. Hannah and I both have our content planned until September and have started trying to find ways to monetize and collaborate with brands.

We were also wanting another one of our college posts to go viral and one post looks like it’s gaining traction and bringing a lot of our other pages a lot more traffic too. I’m just pretty pumped that the last few weeks of picking ourselves and the blog up off the ground is starting to pay off. Oh, and we met a local blogger on Tuesday and she’s the coolest. You should all go check out her blog!

A PERSONAL INSTAGRAM

So, if you didn’t know; I started a public personal Instagram account. It’s kind of my new project and I’m really excited about it, but I do see how it could be confusing considering I already run the blog Instagram. Well, ya know the blog Instagram has a purpose. The captions should use call to actions to get people to the blog. Which I have been working hard to get people to do and it’s working. We are getting a more engaged audience with more people clicking on the links in our bio and organically commenting on our posts. I’m starting to get more comfortable with posting less and having more meaningful things to say and ask when I do.

But, I wanted something to be a little bit more personal to me. I know it can be hard on our blog account to separate what I post/comment from what Hannah will post and comment. I think a big thing about growing the blog is building connections with readers and you can’t really do that if you don’t know who you’re talking to! I’m also trying to start getting in portrait photography. I am very new. You’ve seen the photos I’ve taken of Hannah and I’ve done several photoshoots with friends and I’m really working on building a portfolio.

PHOTOG

It’s nerve wracking because I have never taken a photography class and am completely self taught. I’m still growing and by no means do I consider myself to be good even. I do want to start showing off my work though so that if a blogger, model, or brand comes across my work and enjoys it, they know who and how to contact me. I’ve been watching a ton of Jessica Whitaker’s videos on Youtube and she has been saving my life when it comes to getting better photos.

It’s a hobby now, but I do see it becoming a potential side hustle and I definitely intent on building up my skills and doing more shoots. If you’re a blogger in SoCal and reading this and you want to shoot, please email me: gabby@theswirlblog.com! I’d love to meet ya and shoot with ya! SO, yeah. That’s why I have yet another instagram account.

THINGS I BOUGHT THIS WEEK

WHAT I POSTED THIS WEEK

xoxo

  • I REALLY wish I lived closer! Shooting together would be so much fun. Have a blast in Cali and I cannot wait for your pictures and to hear updates from your internship!

    Kayla | kaylablogs.com

    • I REALLY wished you lived closer too!! Blogger trip soon?!?! kk and yes will keep everyone super informed with these posts!!
      xo, G

  • Love this new series, Gabby! And by the way, I love all of your pictures! I think you’re becoming really good with photography, so don’t give up! 🙂 I cannot wait to see pictures of your summer in Cali.

    • Aww thanks Amelie!! That seriously means so much! I can’t wait to take them hehe
      xo, G

  • One day we’re going to shoot together! One day! Also, those shorts from BooHoo are super cute! (I’ve been buying way too many shorts lately.)

    • YES PLZ. one day preferably sooner than later! I’m excited to try them out and I’ve just buying way too much stuff in general!
      xo, G

  • California sounds like so much fun! And I love watching Jessica’s videos, she has great photography tips!!
    xo, Syd
    anchoredinthesouth.com

    • I just got here and I’m already in love!! Yes, she is such a big help honestly!
      xo, G