I am changing the membership system at PhotoBotanic and will soon remove the member login. All content will be free.

New-and-Improved-PhotoBotanic

Most of the content was already free but the login member wall became a barrier to easy access and sharing the content. Workshop subscribers will have new ways to get tips and critiques. I want to simplify what I do and spend more time exploring new ideas and creating new work

Accessing the content should be as simple as accessing the Blog tips.

I will continue to send out a regular monthly digest newsletter, a summary of all news, posts, workshop tips, and new book announcements with links back to the various articles. All existing members will be folded into that list and you can always unsubscribe through the Mail Chimp link at the bottom of every newsletter.  Members should have just received an e-mail with this announcement.

I am still going to have paid memberships and those of you who have paid for the Workshop subscription will now be part of a special group called Supporting Members. You will get free copies of all new books and other perks described below, and I hope my work will be worth your continued membership.

From the beginning PhotoBotanic was to be the place where I publish my new work. I thought creating memberships would be the way for me to concentrate my best writing in the Learning Center, developing new books and pursuing new ideas in art and gardening. But I am writing the books anyway, and making new art – there’s more to be gained by sharing openly than putting the information behind even a free member entry point.

Cornus florida 'Cherokee Chief'; pink flowering dogwood tree branch in California garden
New art techniques – Extractions – Photobotanic illustration

The outcome was always meant to be e-books, several a year, on topics I found intriguing, independent of traditional publishing. I will still be publishing the e-books and creating them here, sharing the new chapters for free as they are written. The Learning Center will be renamed Living Books.

I believe, and many experts agree, that there is still a strong market for the e-books themselves once all the chapters are bundled together.  Many readers would rather pay for an e-book than trying to read it piecemeal on a website.  Indeed, giving the content away for free can build anticipation for the book.

Good Garden Photography eBook cover
My first e-book, Good Garden Photography – Best garden book of 2014

Putting the Learning Center content behind a member wall prevented me and members from sharing it with others. So there will be no more membership login and no passwords to remember.

I do continue to need your support and encouragement. Even if you do not want to contribute as a Supporting Member, please read and comment on the new work – push me to explore.  Stay on the mailing list for announcements, discounts, and word about various appearances and workshops.

Supporting Members are those who join, or continue, at $5 per month or $50 per year. You will get a free copy of every new book and the best discounts to all the existing titles. There will be a special, hidden section of the website, accessible through the member newsletter, for workshop tips and surprises.  You are not just supporting the Workshops but encouraging me with your dollars to pursue new projects such as sustainable gardening with the Summer-Dry Project and new ideas in garden photography such as Florilegia.

Changing the site while it is still live is going to create some of its own quirks. I will need to revise the various descriptions and redo the links for many of the Learning Center categories. Current members will get a new e-mail alerting you when the login is removed.  I appreciate any and all help if you find a glitch, a dead link, or any sort of navigation problems.

I have received plenty of patient feedback from those of you who have helped me improve the site, it is a never-ending process.  I sincerely thank you and look forward to new ways to communicate and build community, and will be making more announcements on the PhotoBotanic Facebook page going forward. For those who still want an online garden photography course and critiques, I am exploring the possibility with an online garden learning website to package the workshop, perhaps with slideshow video as well.

Stay tuned, change is good. Onward….

 

 

2 COMMENTS

  1. I liked the concept of the drip lessons in that, despite the best of intentions, I never manage to read a photography resource in its entirety. I enjoyed rationed snippets. The weakness of the approach was that I eventually lost tract of when the next lessons would be published and as the site matured, I sometimes found myself lost among the various supplementary resources that I went to explore rather than staying with in the paid structure. The latter is really recognition that paid membership, as long as a wider audience was being catered to, just added a level of confusion. Also the change will avoid members getting locked out of their account which happened to me and was handled well by Saxon. Thus I am happy to try the new approach for a year to see what rewards supporting membership will bring. At the end of the day, the product is different from what is available on so many photographic web sites; the challenge will be to keep this difference alive.

    • Thanks Andrew – This is exactly the feedback I wanted. No member actually accessed the drip content in exactly the order it was available, making that confusing as other content was created for free members. Reading the self contained books at whatever pace you want allows much more flexibility.

      That is why I am investigating the on-line learning website for those who do want a course, separate from all the rest.

      Thanks for your support.

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