10:05 pm

"Musings on Sustainable Content and Gloomy Exam Weather"

I've definitely taken close to a week to gather up the crumbs of inspiration and energy following the end of my exams to type this first sentence. Perhaps I need to switch up my 'pictures first, words later' approach to content creation, especially seeing that it's quite impossible to now turn this into a "How To Pair Your Wide Leg Pants, Furry Top and Head Wrap to go from Day to Night" post. Ok maybe it is possible, but I don't know how useful that would be to the average varsity kid.

This isn't a 'how to' post. It's an editorial. Featuring me, my extremely helpful friend Sam as first time photographer and approximately 40 minutes before I had to run back to transfer my clothes from the washing machine to the dryer and get back to my maths textbook. It's an editorial that got me thinking about a few things about the blogger club's fave word- content. Possibly the most important word in the blog-universe. That specific word has seen me delete approximately 3 paragraphs in my attempts at doing justice to the images you currently see. It's a word I feel quite strongly about.

I've received emails asking how I come up with content, heard questions about maintaining " freshness" at talks and seen some brilliant blogs leading up to this moment, so I've kinda tried to boil this all down to the main types of blogs I see nowadays, and the way their content is set up, as a way of articulating what I'm about I guess (and maybe a way to whyl about stuff I dislike).

So for the most part, blogs have evolved from the OOTD phase, characterised by detailed outfit descriptions and "I love this on me's", giving rise (especially in the SA industry) to the 'visual' blog- favouring number of beautifully shot street-style images over number of sentences (We are a visual generation and not everyone is a Shakespeare or Carrie Bradshaw I guess). Then we've got the 'How To' blogs, proving to be especially useful in the food and make-up arena, as direct and specific articulations of things like beauty for black skin are explained in a more personal format than their magazine counterparts. The amazingly written and researched fashion commentary blogs are there to provide insight and stir discussion while there also seems to be a shift as bloggers are moving more and more in an editorial direction as a way of building on portfolio growth and asserting a set of skills to go with their cool style.

With all of this in mind I've come to a semi-conclusion about the world of content creation and maintaining a sustainable audience. The blogs I'm loyal to go beyond pretty images and a cute outfit (there's insta for that). The blogs that I love either grip me with the ability to provide a useful service, intelligent discussion, cool editorial content or with a powerful/ informative/ smart/funny voice that threads through each post and leaves me coming back for more. It's a bit of a tough ask (but I think necessary in such a saturated field) and it's something I admire and aspire to.

And so I present to you, this editorial shot on the streets of Rondebosch in moody overcast weather. Grungy, hard edge stuff, to reflect the season's mood as well as my exam mood which is also reflected in my comfort and warmth over all things study style.  A little more focus on transcending the street style shot into something else I hope, as I work at honing the "creative director" bit of Refiloe Mokgele.

How do I come up with content you ask?

Well it kinda ranges from what's annoying me about the industry at said moment, to a Missy Elliot song, to using the blog as a way to hash out previously unclear things bubbling in my brain.

This serves as the latter. I'm slowly figuring out exactly what I want All Zuri to become. 

P.S I'm back in Joburg for the vac so hopefully cool JHB type content coming your way soon!

Outfit Details

scarf, wide-leg pants, flatform shoes: H&M
furry gilet thing: Amy Rose Apparel
leather jacket: Zara


Styling & Creative direction: Refiloe Mokgele
Photography: Samantha Sunduza

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