Let’s Talk: 5 Questions for Afoma
Hi there! Happy Monday!
So a few weeks ago, I put up a post inviting y’all to ask me any questions that you might have about me, my photography, med school and life in general. Fortunately/unfortunately, I didn’t get a ton of questions, but I figured I’d answer those I got anyway.
How do I improve my writing? Do you have any tips to make writing better?
Practice. I think everyone’s writing is really bad in the beginning, but practice makes all the difference. It’s also really helpful to find someone whose opinion you trust to review your writing. Having another pair of eyes look over your work gains you a new perspective on your writing. As someone working on honing their skills, it’s also great to tone down your sensitivity, accept truly honest feedback and focus on getting better.
There’s no greater way to get better at writing than reading. A lot. Most writers advice you to read a lot and read widely. I think that’s of tremendous benefit to any kind of writer, even if you just want to blog better. You gotta expose yourself to good and bad writing. It’s my least favorite way to read, but when you’re interested in writing, you also have to be a critical reader, on the look out for things that could’ve been better written, how it could be improved and discerning why exactly you enjoyed a certain piece of writing.
Most importantly, succeeding at anything requires persistence. Don’t give up!
I really like the new face of your blog, but I’m curious, why did you decide to change your blog name from Ihunda’s Musings?
If you’re a new enough reader on my blog that you didn’t know that my blog was called ihundasmusings for the last four years or so, then WELCOME! *insert confetti*
I did a sort of rebrand in March 2017 and changed my blog name and domain to Afoma Umesi (which is my name, if you were wondering). I also got a new theme.
Honestly, I changed. Sometime in the last quarter of 2016, I figured out what really matters to me in life and I think figuring out where you want to go in life or what you want to do with your life redefines your focus. I stopped blogging about things I truly didn’t care about, stopped blogging for other people and started doing it for myself, how I want and when I want. That’s the only way I can be successful (success being my own definition of success); the only way I can enjoy what I do.
Another reason, also linked to having a goal in mind is that I wanted everything I do online to be in one virtual space: my photography, my words, my favorite books. It’s like a one-stop Afoma address and it’s exactly my name and me and I love it. I feel like I renovated my home and now I just love being at home. Instead of feeling stressed about coming home, I truly enjoy being in this space.
So, in a few words, I feel like Afoma Umesi, the blog, the nature of content, the name (that I now comfortably inhabit) fully encapsulates who I am now better than Ihunda’s Musings (which I still love) ever did.
What camera do you use and how do you edit your photos?
I edit mostly on Adobe Lightroom. iPhone photos are edited on VSCO Cam.
How do you make time to read all the articles and books and still keep up with everything else in your life?
I hate to sound incredibly cliche, but: time management, prioritizing and working smart.
I make ridiculously detailed to-do lists and when I know I have to get something done, I’m really disciplined about it. I also have priorities so I some things just can’t get done until other things have been done. I don’t do anything in the morning until I’ve done my bible reading and prayed. I don’t even check social media and it’s not because I’m anti social media. I’m just easily distractible. Once I’ve started down the rabbit hole, it escalates really quickly. So I do first things first.
I have a scheduled day for reading articles every week because I just can’t handle them everyday. I try to spend at least half an hour a day reading but it’s not life and death so if I really can’t do it, then I don’t.
I work smart in the sense that I try to work when the iron’s hot. I do more blog work on certain rotations. For example I’m on pathology right now and it’s honestly a breeze, so I have sooo much free time (to do other kinds of work). I’ve completed the majority of my tasking rotations (except ob/gyn), so I have more time. Plus I really like doing these things. I don’t go out often unless it’s outdoorsy stuff or preaching so I have a lot of me time.
My advice essentially: time management, priorities and work smart.
How much time do you spend editing or do you spend more time setting up the perfect shot rather than editing afterwards?
I definitely do the latter. I hate technical work, but I know how much of a difference good editing can make and how much closer to the image I see in my mind’s eye editing can take my original shot. Still though, I’m no photoshop maestro so I really micro manage scenes and make up and all that stuff, just so I have fewer editing meltdowns lol. My first wedding took a week of editing (with school everyday).
I can edit a single portrait session in two days (with other engagements). My eyes really hate editing too, but man, the final images are worth it.
That’s all folks! I know it wasn’t a tonnn of questions (if you want a longer q&a post, you have to actually ask questions!), but I hope you found something useful!
Have a fantastic week!