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Date: 04/01/2015 | By: Heather

Happy 2nd Birthday MirrorLessons! | Big changes are afoot

heather mathieu mirrorlessons

Happy 2nd Birthday MirrorLessons! | Big changes are afoot

It is hard to believe that exactly two years have passed since we launched our beloved website MirrorLessons. Much like a newborn child, we never could have imagined just how profoundly running a website would impact our personal and professional lives. Not only has it allowed us to experiment with dozens of the latest mirrorless cameras, but it has also given us the opportunity to travel to places we might never have visited otherwise and forge long-lasting friendships with fellow photographers around the world.

The year 2014 brought with it a number of exciting milestones and events that have helped mould the character of our website and expand our community.

The most important was by far Photokina in Cologne, where we interviewed many mirrorless brand managers, met up with bloggers and photographers we’d gotten to know online (including Matthew Maddock of PhotoMADD, Donovan Bond of Fuji vs. Fuji, Thomas Menk of Fuji X Pro, street photographer Marco Larousse, and Gordon Laing of Camera Labs), tried the latest products, and bathed in the charged atmosphere of the largest photography trade show in the world. Between losing ourselves in the chaos of the endless showrooms, hurriedly eating ice cream for lunch to save time, and staying up until the wee hours of the morning to publish a blog post, it was certainly an intense experience, but an unforgettable one nonetheless!

X-T1, 1/350, f/ 2/1, ISO 400
A photo following an interview with Fujifilm Italia at Photokina

Another incredible experience were the two London Photo Walks (dubbed LNDNWLK 1.0 and 2.0) that we organised alongside respected art photographers Johnny and Rebecca Patience in March and September respectively. The walks united photographers from all over Europe, many of whom had already been in touch for quite some time on social networks such as Twitter and Google Plus. The cameras we saw on the walks ranged from DSLRs to mirrorless to film to small compacts, but what we all had in common was a love for the art of photography. Given the success of LNDNWLK 1.0 and 2.0, I think we can all expect a third edition sometime in 2015!

LNDNWLK 2.0 – The chance to meet up with some amazing online friends!

The monthly Flickr Photography Challenges we began holding in association with fellow mirrorless blogger Tyson Robichaud back in March have also played a large role in the growth of our community this past year. The challenges are simple: all you have to do is submit an image to our Flickr thread based on a monthly theme that was chosen by the previous month’s winner. Every six months, we publish the images of the six previous winners in one post, have the public vote on their favourite, and send a small prize to the overall winner. With multiple submissions every month from very talented photographers, the challenges have been a great success so far, and we will certainly continue to hold them throughout the new year.

ILCE-7S, 1/100, f/ 28/10, ISO 100
The first prize giveaway featuring the winners from the previous six months

Finally, 2014 saw the birth of the MirrorLessons Mirrorless Community on Google Plus. Since Google Plus’ minimalistic platform is suited to displaying high resolution images and tends to be predominantly used by photographers, it seemed like the perfect place to establish a new community. Now, a year later, it has over 1000 members from countries all over the world, and is the most active mirrorless community on the social network. Not only is it a safe and friendly platform to share your latest shots, but it is also the perfect place to seek advice and constructive criticism, share interesting articles and videos, and make new friends. We’ve even started holding a few informal community-based challenges to get the creative juices of our members flowing. If you have a Gmail account, we’d love to see you there!

mirrorlessons google+ community
MirrorLessons Mirrorless Community on Google+

Looking forward to 2015, there are big personal changes on the horizon for Mathieu and me. As those who follow us on our social networks may already know, we recently came to the decision to move to Wales in February to be closer to my family. It is with some sadness that we bid farewell to Turin and the Italian lifestyle but we are also excited about embarking on this new chapter in our lives. As for how this will affect our professional lives, we have chosen to dedicate ourselves to photography and MirrorLessons full-time so that the blog may reach its full potential in the new year.

X100S, 1/160, f/ 5.6, ISO 800
X100S, 1/160, f/ 5.6, ISO 800 – Wales 2014

In conclusion, there are a few special names we’d like to mention as they have been fundamental to the development of our blog and community. Without them, I don’t know where we would be today!

  • Thomas Menk – We are forever grateful for your Fuji X curation, not only of our articles but of those of other talented Fujifilm photographers. Our heartfelt thanks!
  • SoundImagePlus – You’ve been a great supporter of our website from the start, and we can’t thank you enough. Keep up the great work on your reviews!
  • The F Stop Lounge Team – Thank you Leigh, Andre and Ugo for your ongoing support of our website. We can’t wait to collaborate more in the new year!
  • The Twitter Community – Johnny, Rebecca, Donovan, Othman, Verity, Eric, Marco, Robert-Paul, Rafa, Tammy, Riley, Vincent, Atle, Matthew, Gavin, Reba, Matt and more! Thank you for sharing our work and being such good friends!
  • Special mentions – Michael, Maria, Jörn, Ray, Laura-Jane, Christophe, Tobias, Giulio, Gian Paolo, Loredana, Max, Cristian and Andrea. Thank you for believing in us!
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Thank you for your support, and a Happy New Year!

Like our blog? Be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter! If you’re planning on buying camera gear, you can check out Amazon and Adorama. Prices remain the same for you, but a small percentage of your purchase value is valued back to us. Thank you!

About the author: Heather Broster

Heather Broster was born in Canada, has lived in Japan and Italy but currently calls Wales home. She is a full-time gear tester at MirrorLessons. You can follow her on Google+, Twitter or Facebook!

  • Mathieu

    Thanks Aubrey, we do respect constructive criticism. We realise the potential of more content. This is why we decided to make some changes as listed in the article. Once we will be able to work full time on the website (which will happen very soon), we will definitely have a more consistent and rich series of posts.

  • Aubrey

    Whoops !!! Sorry should be survived your second year.

  • Aubrey

    Well you survived a year – Congratulations.

    That said, I am sorry to say, you are starting to get a bit boring.

    Please put some life into it – contentious reviews, buy new or used?, use of legacy lenses, getting started with a cheap ( used?) system, etc.

    Please note I my comments are designed to be constructive. I avidly read your site and have enjoyed all that I have read.

    P.s. I am posting this as a guest because your site insists that I sign in with D?, F ? , Dove ?, G ?.

  • Mathieu

    You too Larry!

  • Mathieu

    Thank you Robert, it was great to meet you too.

  • Mathieu

    Thank you Johann!

  • Mathieu

    Thank you Demian 😉

  • Demian

    Happy Birthday to You
    Happy Birthday to You
    Happy Birthday Dear Mathieu & Heather
    Happy Birthday to You.

    May good luck go with mirrorlessons
    And happiness too.

  • Johann Brandstätter

    Congratulations & keep up the good work! I never miss reading your posts

  • Robert-Paul Jansen

    Thanks for all *you* have done for the community in 2014 and I know 2015 will even be a bigger year for you! Was really great meeting you last year and have a small chat! Happy new year!

  • Larry Gentile

    Thank you and have a fantastic 2015!!

  • Jay Farrell

    Happy birthday and thanks for providing a community for us mirrorless users, even before we make up the majority :)

  • jazz1

    Great Blog! I appreciate all of your good work!

  • soundimageplus

    Happy Birthday and I look forward to your continued success. It will also be nice to have another UK based site.

    Thanks for the thanks, my support is sincere and not just because you bought me lunch!!

  • Heather Broster

    Thank you Andre!

  • Heather Broster

    Yes, and it wash’t even on purpose. (I tend to forget my own birthday!) I look forward to seeing your beautiful photos in the new year in the community. 😉

  • Heather Broster

    Thank you, Thomas!

  • Heather Broster

    Thanks, and to you Eric!

  • Heather Broster

    Thank you! 2015 will indeed be a great adventure. :)

  • Thomas

    Alle the best and many thanks!!!

  • Mirrorless Journey

    Happy Birthday to you and to the blog. I wish you great things for 2015. Have fun! :)

  • speltrong

    Wow, congrats! I only found your blog in the middle of last year, but I’ve really been enjoying your unique take on photographic equipment (and photography in general). Really glad to hear you guys are going full-time, and I hope you’re super successful!

  • Klaus Thielking-Riechert

    Wow! Two birthdays a day, this is definitely a reason to say “Cheers!” Thank you for all the hard work you did during the last years – you can be very proud of this! For myself, it is always a pleasure to stay here! I just read about your plans and it looks as you are in front of a very exciting period – and I am sure you will master all these very well! So have a good time and espacially a good party!

  • Andre T. Nygen

    Congratulation! :)

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