Six months after the first post of Books and Beers went up I look back and am grateful for the community of #bookstagrammers and #beerphotographers who all share similar passions. To be themselves amongst friends and share in their enthusiasm for a small part of their world. I’ve used this as an outlet to keep myself focused on building something. Building my skills as a photographer for one and there are a number of incredible photographers out there in both categories who I one day hope to attain their level of skill. The subtleties of getting the lighting right can be intimidating with the shiny glass bottles and fine detail of the lettering on books combined. It’s forced me to slow down, take a step back, and really understand what I’m doing. Every picture there is a goal to be a little bit better. Not to judge the old ones too harshly but rather as stepping stones as my skill level improves.
Tapping into both communities and seeing the enthusiasm for the stories behind both the beer and the books. The beer story tends to be more tangible. The brewers and small businesses being represented in each sip. Take Bench Creek for example. Started in Edson, Alberta with three main lines of beer they have quickly become one of the premier craft brewers in the province winning several awards for their IPA White Raven (a personal favourite).
The book community clearly gets behind the author but the story itself becomes the star as we become enveloped in what is going on amidst the pages. My style of books tends to drift between fiction (fantasy, science fiction, and historical) and non-fiction (business, philosophy, psychology, and mindfulness). A smaller crowd for sure but there is an overall respect for the process and admiration for good photography; thus the drive to do better each time.
As 2016 draws to a close it’s fun to think ahead about the possibilities and goals. I’d like to work with the local breweries and help promote their product through innovative marketing approaches. It may seem like a random pairing but people are truly passionate about both and where there is passion there is a market. Building my knowledge base is also a goal, always. The types of non-fiction books I choose are always designed to teach me something new and add to my knowledge/wisdom as I progress down this path. Lastly building a community has always been a goal. A community of like-minded individuals who appreciate good beer and good books whether they are together or apart.
If you are an up-and-coming brewery in Alberta, in Canada, or around the world I’d love to hear from you and brainstorm potential opportunities and ideas. Half the fun is the creative process coming up with pairings that may not at first seem to fit but link together through storylines, logos, or as simply as the name. If you are a visitor from @books.and.beers I look forward to seeing you in 2017. If you are visiting from one of my other sites then be sure to check it out if you are a fan of books or beer and see what you think. I’d like to hear what you are working at and building. Where you are directing your creative energy going into 2017.