Adventures in 360 Degree Photography

It's been a long time since I posted anything, so I figured I'd share what's been going on. About a year ago, I finished the first draft of a new book. Unlike my first one, this was a young adult novel. It took place in the near future, and showed the logical progression of where technology might take us, as seen through the eyes of a spunky young heroine.

As I prepped to get started on the second draft, I decided to get a new toy for myself -- a 360 degree camera. And it's kept me from getting back to the book ever since.

So what's a 360 degree camera? Basically, it's a camera that uses multiple lenses to take a spherical photo that shows every direction, like a globe. And just like you can stretch and skew a globe to create a flat map, you can do the same with a 360 degree photo. By twisting, skewing, and manipulating it into a flat image, it can become bizarre and surreal, twisted and beautiful, or just plain...interesting.

I'm totally addicted to it. There are so many creative possibilities with 360 photography. I love playing around and seeing what I can come up with. And it really is like playing. The whole process is genuinely fun.

Writing is long and tedious. You have to constantly force yourself to sit down and slog through it. Finishing a piece isn't even enjoyable -- it's just a relief to be done. On the other hand, for me at least, 360 photography is fun while you're actually doing it. It's creatively stimulating, and I'm constantly surprised by what I end up with.  And unlike a book, which takes a long, long time to finish, I can finish a single 360 photo in a few hours -- or even a few minutes. Then I post it to Instagram and I'm done with it. It's out of my least until I start the next one.

I don't plan to stop writing. And I fully intend to finish my new book. When? Well, let's see if I can pull myself away from the 360 photography first.