Editor’s column: Selfies are all the rage in photography
This week, the Post Independent will bring back one newspaper tradition and revise another.
The practice we are reviving is a photo page, which papers used to periodically do for big stories or as a regular feature, often on Sundays at larger papers.
We all know that we are blessed to live in one of the most beautiful places on Earth, and part of our hope is to capture and celebrate that. But our new feature will be much more than scenery — and it will go beyond still photos on paper to include digital slideshows and video on our website.
Staff photographer/videographer Chelsea Self will begin featuring a single topic most Wednesdays.
Just because it’s fun and our visual journalist’s last name is Self, we’ll call the feature Selfies.
Chelsea is a Colorado Mountain College photography graduate who stuck around Glenwood Springs last summer and worked for the city until the Post Independent was lucky enough to hire her late last year.
She’s a hard worker with a keen eye and solid journalists’ curiosity. If you have an idea for a Selfie photo page or visual story, email her at email@example.com.
To make room in print for Selfies, we will reduce the frequency of our Good Taste page, which has appeared each Wednesday. Good Taste will begin appearing only on the last Wednesday of each month, but we hope to make it more relevant.
The monthly page will feature a recipe or two from valley chef Susie Jimenez, who’s been a Food Network Star finalist, among other appearances, and does her “Spice It Up with Susie Jimenez” show on KNFO.
To learn more about Susie, whose recipes have been appearing in our Scene Friday entertainment section, visit http://susiejimenez.com/.
Our monthly food page also will feature Marilyn Gleason, who lives on a Peach Valley farm and has been writing for several months for us about local eating. Marilyn is a graceful writer who lives her topic, and eating locally, broadly, is a topic of growing interest.
What will be lost?
We will no longer be running recipes from the Associated Press every Wednesday.
The Wednesday food page in newspapers has been around since long before I got in the business — which was a long time ago. It used to be that grocery stores advertised in newspapers on Wednesdays, touting specials and promotions.
The origin of this appears to lie in pioneer-era homemaking advice: “Wash on Monday, iron on Tuesday, mend on Wednesday, churn on Thursday, clean on Friday, bake on Saturday, rest on Sunday.”
At some point, as convenience improved, butter churning gave way to “market on Thursday.”
I’m guessing here, but since society used to move less quickly and because many newspapers came out in the afternoon (even big metro papers had afternoon editions), having this week’s grocery specials in Wednesday papers allowed clipping and planning for that Thursday market trip.
I’m also told by my wife, whose father was a grocery store manager, that Wednesdays were double stamp days for S&H Green Stamps, which could be redeemed for savings as shoppers filled booklets.
Through the 1980s and ’90s, grocery stores were among the advertisers that moved from printing ads in the regular pages of newspapers to preprinting separate pages that are inserted into the paper.
The Post Independent and many other papers still carry grocery inserts on Wednesdays, but it’s been a long time in most towns, including those in Garfield County, since food advertisers bought space in the regular pages.
Part of editing is looking at the range of content we offer. I’ve decided that, with recipes widely available for any taste online, that running a couple of random recipes is less relevant than hopefully entertaining and touching readers with locally created visual journalism. And I’m further excited about having two really good local food contributions on the new monthly Good Taste page.
Like my decision to stop running 40-year-old “Peanuts” comic strips, I don’t expect every reader to like this choice, but we’re moving ahead with it.
In a way, our Selfies are a public safety service. Taking your own is dangerous — more people died in 2015 from taking selfies (not by Chelsea) than in more feared shark attacks. Honest.
Contribute to GO!
And, speaking of photos, we invite reader submissions for our weekly Thursday Go! pages. Go! is our weekly look at what almost everyone who lives here does — getting outdoors to play and exercise.
We are eager to have pictures from your adventures, along with short descriptions of why this is a favorite spot, moment or activity for you. We also invite short essays about outdoor experiences. We’d prefer these to be 500 words or less, with a photo if possible. Send contributions to Heather Marine, firstname.lastname@example.org. If you send an essay, it’s best to either simply put the text in the body of an email or attach a Word document to your email. It can prove difficult to open files in some other formats some of the time.
I hope you enjoy Selfies in print and online, and I hope you share some of your adventures with our Go! readers. Don’t back off a cliff taking a selfie, though, please, which would get you in the paper in a much less enjoyable way.
Randy Essex is editor of the Post Independent.
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