Over the past couple of weeks I've started to notice a number of issues with blogger. Initially when I imported images to posts they would appear fine, but when I returned to the draft it would only show broken image links. Now, as soon as I place an image, I get the little broken pic icon. But this is only an issue for me as I'm certain it is down to the IT policy I have to contend with during my lunch break. Over the past few years it has got progressively stricter, I can't access Google Drive and I can't access my blog [or any blog that references 'games' - you can see the issue there]. I found some loopholes [that were subsequently plugged] and adopted Google comments so I could still respond to people, but that was ultimately doomed by google itself.
Which bring us to now - either the IT policy has changed, the slight shift by Google to how Photos and Drive interacts has precluded access or I have had my access curtailed [the usual dialog box is short on the usual explanations why I'm denied which feels suspicious].
Anyway, what does this all mean? Writing my blog was a lunch time exercise, something I used to de-stress and re-balance for the remainder of the day. When I write a blog post I import all the images and then go back through adding pertinent commentary above each image, using the image to inform the text. You can appreciate that is challenging if I can no longer see the image I'm trying to take inspiration from. Which means I'm left with a number of options:
Blog without commentary - not my style. The images are important, a record of my achievements and what you the reader is most interested in but the writing is what I have to get out of my head - I've said many times this is my 'hobby pensieve'. Without the text I'd feel stressed.
Blog at home - this is the most likely answer, but not without its own challenges. I don't have a stable setup in the man-cave for internet access - the wi-fi is sketchy. But more importantly if I'm out in the shed I want to be doing the hobby. That was the joy of the current system, blogging when I couldn't paint. But if I'm to keep the blog going I'll have to set aside some time do it, how that manifests in regular posts I don't know.
Use our 'standalone' laptop - feasible, except for the fact I just got a new work laptop [after 6 years] and it would be ridiculous to be getting that out regularly for blogging even if it is my lunch break...
Switch to a different platform - this isn't really an option but I did have a quick a look at Wordpress, just to see if it was more compatible. There seem to be a number of things to help migrate blogger but importing pics from Google Photos only appears to work one at a time, which is no good for me. There would be a lot of work migrating over and I'm pretty sure I'd have to start paying for the service to get some of the things blogger delivered for free.Blogging at home seems to be the only feasible option, which is incredibly frustrating. I'm currently really struggling with the hobby, my mojo had fizzled out mainly because I couldn't face that darn Dark Shroud but I finally picked up Y'thari's Guardians and I've had a couple of hours of productive painting. It may not have achieved my vision of autumnal Silver Birch, but I could create that in half a dozen different variations anyway and it's still early days, so I should wait until it's complete to judge but the potential is evident.
In conclusion, the blog's been chopped off at the knees and I'll do what I can to keep it going but the motivation to do so is in direct competition for the limited motivation/time I have to do the actual hobby I want to write about - something has to give. It's not dead but after [nearly] 9 years it might have to start taking it easy for a while [I can't see the policy changing, if indeed that is the cause, but who knows...]. I know everyone will be fine with whatever I post, I'm just frustrated that this situation is out of my hands.