The TumblrpocalypseThe end is near! Tumblr Refugees: Read On No doubt by now you’ve read news of Tumblr’s demise. No? In a nutshell they caved into the demands of Apple (and the Feds) with an epic overreaction, and brought down the oppressive curtains of censorship on us members. It’s a sad and cowardly move by Jeff D’Onofrio, and likely the final nail in the coffin for one of the last platforms with common-sense content policies. Artists and perverts alike (I love you all) have until December 17th to clear out, or lose anything the (quite inept) Tumblr algorithm deems “explicit” forever. Thankfully, with the help of a couple long-forgotten plugins, exodus to a self-hosted WordPress installation isn’t impossible.   Note: while there is enough overlap for a successful migration from Tumblr, the two platforms have several features that don’t exist on the other. Because of this there will obviously be some cleanup needed after migration (such as a ton of “no title” titles if, like me, you didn’t use titles on Tumblr), as well as some data that will be lost (such as likes and credits). Also, I’ve only used this procedure to migrate my clients’ text- and photo-based blogs, so your results may vary with reblogs, chats, etc.   This guide is just a quick-and-dirty, intended to save experienced nerds some time, since time is short and misinformation is plentiful—this is not all inclusive. It assumes you have at least a basic working knowledge of the WP-Admin and installing plug-ins. Ideally you’ll be performing these steps on a local install of WordPress using XAMPP or whatever development environment you prefer, then pushing it to a live site, but I recommend at least starting with a clean install of WordPress. If you’re migrating into an existing WordPress site please make a backup of the database first! In fact, I recommend backing up the database after step 8 on a clean install too just in case. The quick-and-dirty guide to fleeing Tumblr in a hurry: In your WordPress Admin, go to Tools › Import. Under Tumblr, click Install Now. When it’s done, click Run Importer. Yes, I know it’s ancient. Yes, I know everyone says it’s broken. It works perfectly fine—I’ve used it in both XAMPP and cPanel environments and both http and https connections. Follow the instructions to create an “app” on Tumblr (super easy), then copy-pasta that OAuth and Secret key back to the Importer and click Connect to Tumblr.… NSFW · Explicit
Fall ColorsAlways Be Creating. Always Be Focused. They say it takes 10,000 hours to become an expert. It’s a falsehood, based on a hole-filled theory (theory != fact) disproved many times through both scientific and practical methods. If you spend 10,000 hours performing a task ad nauseam you’ll have developed muscle memory, and if you’re unlucky, carpal tunnel syndrome—nothing more. You don’t become an expert by going through the motions until they become an easy habit, that’s not enough: you have to pay attention, and learn.   There’s no insta-filter that can take the place of doing the fucking work.   Becoming an expert is not a destination, to reluctantly use the cliché, but a journey. When it becomes easy, great: that’s progress. Now increase the difficulty and keep growing, because the moment you stop learning and put your mind on autopilot is the moment you’ve settled for “good enough.” Good enough isn’t creating. Good enough isn’t expert. Good enough is stagnation of worst form. I’m reminded of this as I sit here doing lat-pulldowns—not just mindlessly repeating—focusing on my precision and fluid motion. And trying not to let my mind wander to the enticingly obvious progress Dani has made with her own fitness routines, as she stretches out in one of her impossibly graceful, borderline-erotic stances across the gym…… NSFW · Explicit
Sex & TravelKeeping vices in check...with social The Audience This rant all started with a question: “You know this is killing your growth. Why are you flip-flopping between adventure and erotic posts instead of focusing on one audience?” The answer should be obvious: I don’t care if I have either audience, and I am not my fucking follower count. I have zero interest in maintaining my good standing within holier-than-thou “overland lifestyle” cliques, and I have even less interest in providing pervert hordes with material for their spank tanks. None of that has anything to do with my “growth” anyhow. I do, however, care deeply about the art itself and the individual connections that the art inspires. I also love the adventure of exploring and the solitude of the wilderness, whether or not the means I use are “worthy” as a status symbol. Sure, I appreciate likes and follows as much as the next guy, but I enjoy the conversations more—especially those private interactions that occur when people are moved to compliment or question my efforts backchannel. (I’m very socially awkward, so I understand exactly how much effort that can take.) I want more of that. I want to reach souls who are in search of that deeper connection. I want to inspire my fellow artists, and break down the hypocritical boundaries of censorship imposed by the false modesty of society. At the very least I want to make you feel something, and if I’m lucky, make you think. I do what I do as much to rock the boat as to share my passions (yes, rocking the boat is one of my passions). Switching it up every other post has proven a subtly effective way to shake loose from those two groups mentioned in the first paragraph while reaching for my real target audience: you. Accountability & Growth I’m at a place in life where it’s easy to be dragged down into the routine, which for a creative is the most dangerous place one can be: chaos is life, routine is death. Instagram is my accountability partner. It follows me around, that nagging little icon always on the lock screen reminding me to create something today. You see, I judge my content not by likes and comments, but against my profile as a whole. It’s a living documentary of the work I’ve done, and I’m competing with only myself. I’m there to consume what inspires, and in turn… NSFW · Explicit
MisplacedFrom the archives of Lost Arizona Have you ever shot an entire set, then completely forgot you have it? These have been gathering dust in Lightroom since April. It was a scout-and-shoot trip, and we were loaded for bear: lenses, strobes, stands, umbrellas, sandbags, and three duffel full of wardrobe…not counting the shoes. Gotta have the shoes.   We’d use none of it.   A frustratingly boring blue sky gave way to one of the warmest slow-motion sunsets we’ve ever experienced. It lingered for what seemed like hours, burning everything in sight with an ever-deepening and otherworldly golden glow. No strobes, no wardrobe, no makeup. Just the Nifty Fifty (50mm lens) locked in at f2.0. Just a coat and the flip-flops she’d worn for the drive up. Oh, and a pair of aviators for good measure.  … NSFW · Explicit
Tools of the TradeThe ever-changing list of my go-to gear Most of the work I do is performed out of my creative studio, behind the wheel of a heavily modified Land Rover, or through the viewfinder of a Canon. Many of the tools I use are custom fabricated by yours truly, sometimes because what I need doesn’t exist, or more often because I simply enjoy building things with my own hands. I originally posted this on the about-me page at Layne Studio after being asked “What __________ do you use?” once too often, but since the studio involves more than just me now it’s time this list moved to the blog proper. This post is just an overview, I might write up an in-depth with the how’s and why’s of each category if anyone would find it helpful. Read along for the details or just click here to skip down to the bullet list of links so your inner-consumer can run wild and free. Camera Gear The Big Guns: I shoot with a variety of Canon gear, but my go-to and favorite is the 80D. It’s durable, light weight, and inexpensive enough to take risks when getting the shot. I use three main lenses: a Sigma 18-35mm f1.8 Art (my personal favorite) for most portraits and some travel/vehicle/landscape work, a Sigma 18-300mm f/3.5-6.3 macro-capable travel zoom, and a Canon EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 wide angle for grabbing wide vistas or interior shots. The Canon 10-22mm wide is due to be replaced…likely with Sigma’s superior constant-aperture variant. Yes, I’m a Sigma fanboy…because, science. Rolling Light: I loved Canon’s pocketable S-line of cameras, but since they’ve been discontinued and the latest rendition predated modern processors and sensors I’ve reluctantly moved on…to the Canon M50. It’s basically an 80D crammed into a rangefinder body; it’s just as capable as it’s big brother, and runs the same glass when paired with the EF-EOS M Mount Adapter. With the native EOS-M lenses it’s the perfect walkabout and hiking camera. Computing Gear Hardware: In the studio my workstation is a personally built Intel-powered, liquid cooled, quad-core PC tower. It’s currently clocked at a conservative 4.4GHz, drives multiple color-calibrated monitors (lead photo), and houses a RAID array large enough to eliminate the need for a separate file server. Communication and general office needs are handled by Google for Work, with weekly on-site and monthly off-site backups of all data. In the field I use a custom built ASUS X202E with enough solid-state storage to back up my cameras on a multi-week expedition. It’s small enough to… NSFW · Explicit
The End of SummerAdventures in our own backyard It’s been a busy season. A very wet winter meant the summer monsoons fell on an already saturated earth. I’m certainly grateful all this water spared from the massive fires blazing all over the west, but it also brought additional repairs and chores to get ready for the next winter, and left little time for anything else. Not one to be outdone by a little water—and enjoying her role of teasing and taunting until she gets my attention a little too much—Dani pushed for us to go out and shoot around town whenever we had a free hour. The abundance of water this year gifted Prescott with full lakes, green mountains, and flowing creeks. It’s the first time we really explored what this area has to offer; six years we’ve lived here but we always seem to be chasing the horizon. Lesson learned: there’s opportunity to explore just about anywhere, if you only look for it…… NSFW · Explicit
Comfort Zones Her Perspective: She doesn’t fit into societal standards. She’s been trapped inside a box where I hid her away from the world. She struggles against the restraints of respectability I bound her with to make myself fit in. She fights to feel the restraints of her desire: the cold weight of chains and the soft bite of leather. I’m done hiding; this is who I am. His Perspective: I’ve long been enamored with travel and exploration, so much it ultimately guided my career toward the premiere magazine on the subject. While that opened up a world of opportunities, it also left me wanting. I love photography as well—especially the raw, sensual, and often erotic scenes captured where nature, adventure, and personal expression meet. Creating (and sharing) imagery of this nature is often frowned upon by an overly prudish culture here in the US, where a little skin can cause a lot of scandal. We drove through the night to one of my favorite locations—secluded away from the crowded cities and popular tourist spots—and spent the morning pushing each other’s limits. No goals…except to help each move past our hesitations, learn to improvise, and explore where our creativity might take us.… NSFW · Explicit
Just a Scouting TripWe got a little carried away When I took these I thought they would just be rubbish test shots—all of them were taken with a brand new and uncalibrated Canon 80D and Sigma 18-35mm f1.8 Art, and focus was all over the place. At the time I didn’t much care: this was supposed to be a quick afternoon outing to check out a spot I found on Google Earth, and see if it might be good for a sunset shoot later this summer. It’s a good reminder to always review photos on the big screen before deleting anything.   I guess it was a good spot, as those few test snaps quickly turned into a few hundred exposures. No planning, no hair, no makeup—just goofing around with a few different poses, getting way too cold, and finding our way home through the dark over unknown roads.… NSFW · Explicit
Yeah, I Said FuckDon't let "what if?" be the excuse Explore for a moment the what if’s?—not the hesitation born of fear, but anticipation of the limitless opportunity blazing a new path might bring. What if we broke with tradition and walked, leaving the paralyzing stress of clinging to what was behind? What if we embraced change, and used the contrast of decay to spotlight all the beauty that surrounds us? What if we dared bolder and lived deliberately? What if we shout FUCK IT!, cast off those chains of hypocrisy we’ve worn in the name of being a “reputable cog” in their machine, let go of the worry that our passions might be revealed, and chase after what they tell us can’t—or shouldn’t—be done? Creative is what I do, after all. That talent is useless if I never use it, if I leave what I’m passionate about on a dusty shelf, or if I forever lock away what I create. I refuse to let what if be an excuse, and so… New on Chazz Layne Daughtcom Raw: Experiments in Light and Passion Often, there’s so much more to an experience than can be summed up in a single photo on Iggy, but not quite enough to fill an article. Sometimes the subject matter just isn’t relevant to any of the magazines for which I write…or appropriate for a work-safe portfolio. These experiments of passion—when they generate share-worthy results—now have a home here: Raw. (Warning: always tasteful, often NSFW) Work: Published and Other Most of the larger projects I’m involved in eventually make it to The Layne Studio’s portfolio. Magazine articles, campaigns in progress, and other smaller projects have gone more or less unshared…until now. Merch: Stuff & Things I like to tinker—creating art, furniture, and other things I want to see made. Some of it goes to clients or is sold in partner shops, other items are more personal and now live here. Free shipping to the USA on most merch, and yeah, I will consider custom requests. My dead camera is getting replaced this week in preparation for a busy summer. Follow along via @chazzlayne on Iggy (daily), or weekly(ish)less frequently on YouTube and Facebook. Give a shout if I’ll be in your neck of the woods, I’m always down for an impromptu meetup; and please keep the comments coming, my creative lives off of your feedback. Cheers!… NSFW · Explicit
One Wow, it’s hard to believe this shoot was six months ago. This was really where the recent changes in my photographic style began. We’d casually fooled around less-than-clothed with the camera before, but this time Dani wanted to put in real effort and see where this kind of shooting might lead us. After picking and scouting a location that afternoon, we raced the setting sun through the abandoned desert facility to capture this set. It was my first time shooting the person as the main subject. It was her first time playing model. She was nervous. I was nervous. We both set that aside, knowing the minimal risks—snapping a few photos you aren’t required to share—would be well worth the potential rewards…… NSFW · Explicit