20.06.13 by Jeff

Ask Me Almost Anything

I don’t use Reddit much but the subreddit I enjoy the most is r/IAmA. If you aren’t familiar it is essentially a series of interviews where a person (sometimes famous, sometimes not) answers everyone’s questions, and it’s really a great way to learn a lot about them.

So the reason I want to do one here is that I am often emailed the same questions over and over, and I’d love to answer them all in one place. Hopefully if enough people ask questions here this post will become a great resource for anyone starting a blog, pursuing a career in the arts, or maybe just looking for a good movie to watch.

There’s some rules/etiquette that Reddit uses and I’d like to use a variation of the here, consider the following:

  • The value of the question: Questions should be original and on topic. They aren’t required to be, but AMAs are a unique opportunity and it is sad to squander them by asking 100 iterations of “if you could fight 1 horse sized duck or 100 duck sized horses.” The point here is to encourage thought-provoking, discussion-inspiring questions that I would not likely be asked anywhere else.
  • Civility and Politeness: users are free to (and encouraged to) ask tough questions. But this should be done in a respectful and polite way. There’s no need to use harsh language, and a comment that treats me like a person is much more likely to be answered.
  • You should upvote interesting/helpful questions. I’m not sure how many people will get involved with this, but if there are lots of questions it will be easier for me to see which ones lots of people want answered and I’ll get to those first.
  • You should downvote joke questions that aren’t intended to get a real answer.
  • You should downvote duplicate questions.

 

The reason this is an ‘Ask Me Almost Anything’ rather than an ‘Ask Me Anything’ is that I’d like it to be filled with content worth looking at. I don’t know everything there is to know about everything but I do know a bit about building a large online community and turning a hobby into a job.

This is an experiment for today. If there is interest I will keep coming back here to answer your questions. Anything that disregards the rules/etiquette might be ignored.

So here we go!

I AM A 30 year old Japanese Canadian who started a blog in my parents’ basement five years ago, that blog became Booooooom, and it is now my full time job. Ask me almost anything.





  • http://mauriceli.com/ Maurice Li

    I know you’re currently a fan of Instagram for photos and Vine for short videos. Thoughts on this morning’s Video for Instagram announcement? Will you keep using Vine the same way?

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      I test-shot some video on Instagram this morning and I was actually quite impressed with it. I’m not sure how I feel about video and photo now appearing in the same feed though.

      As imperfect as Vine is, I like the idea that it’s separate, I go on there to see moving things and use Instagram was where I’d go to look at photos. That’s why I think an app like VSCO now has a great chance to step in and be Instagram for photogs who just want to display photos.

      There is also a gif-like appeal of Vine still but I think it may die quickly if they don’t at least resolve the bugs when you attempt to shoot something with it and it fails to upload.

      • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

        and to more directly answer your question I may still use Vine the way I’ve been using it up until now which is rarely at all.

  • Jon Love

    Often the first & only time we get to “see” artwork these days is on the internet via sites like yours. Do you think there will be a more pronounced power shift from big galleries to big online curators? Is Booooooom the online Gagosian? Do you WANT to be?

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      I don’t want to be the online version of anything! I want Booooooom to be its own thing and I want to be offline too, a physical creative space is in the cards eventually. Actually if I could talk to as many people offline everyday as I do online I might quit the Internet today mainly because email is the devil and it wastes so much time.

      I think the power shift has already happened but big physical galleries will never cease to exist. Until they figure out a way to email a cheeseburger people will still go to McDonalds. Actually, it’s more like until they figure out how to make an image of a cheeseburger on your computer screen be as engaging an experience as actually eating a real cheeseburger you will still go and eat real cheeseburgers. I will still go to art galleries to see sculptures and installations. Perhaps the Internet is killing our desire to go and look at photos on a wall though.

      I think what websites are doing better than art galleries right now is providing a space that is far less stuffy and elitist. I want people to feel like Booooooom is inclusive and accessible. You can sit around in your underwear eating nachos and look at art on your computer and not feel judged.

      • Jon Love

        A Booooooom gallery would be incredible, with the roster of artists I’m certain would sign up for you, as well as the inclusivity & fun that you foster.
        I WAS going to put on clothes & put down the nachos, but since no one is here to judge…

        Thanks for the response, you do good work!

      • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

        haha

        ya i actually don’t have a huge interest in a gallery space, i don’t want to have to be somewhere 9-5, i don’t have a passion for planning events and organizing shows but i could see having a place where people could come and work on things together.

  • Brittany Sowacke

    I’m looking to start a fashion/art zine in Chicago and am wondering how you tried to gain momentum in a similarly large city. Did you actively advertise to like-minded websites or did the following just sort of happen without your active participation beyond posting on a regular basis?

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      Imagine the entire spectrum of blogs (or zines) as a line. On one end you have a really broad topic like “Basketball”, on the other end you have a really niche topic like “Vintage NBA Basketball Jerseys from the 70s”. There are pros and cons of attempting to be at either end.

      The chance of having your blog about basketball ever hit the first page of Google is extremely small but the amount of people who care about basketball is extremely large so your potential audience, even if it’s a fraction of a fraction of the world is still enormous.

      On the other hand, your blog about Vintage NBA jerseys from the 70s has a far higher chance of becoming one of the most popular sites because you have far less competition. At the same time though, your potential audience is a lot smaller, how many of your own friends will even care about this?

      What I have discovered is that if you bring it in two steps from either extreme you are in a better position to gain momentum because you’ll have enough of an audience and not so much competition that it’s impossible to become one of the best. Then once you have that momentum you can say hey I’m actually interested in this way more specific thing or this way more broad thing and point people in the direction you originally wanted to go.

      So maybe not focusing right away on a blog about “Basketball” but maybe about “Wheelchair Basketball” (slightly more niche) or instead of “Vintage NBA Jerseys from the 70s” maybe “Graphic Design in Sports from the 70s” (slightly more broad)

      I think Booooooom started out two steps broader than the niche side and in 5 years it has moved to a couple steps short of the broad site (if that makes any sense).

      I think thinking about this is far more important than targeting other websites to push your content to. Figure out your concept first and then the other stuff comes really easy.

      • Brittany Sowacke

        Grade A advice right here, really appreciate it. Thanks.

      • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

        Thanks for the question!

  • adamw

    How did you start your blog? How did you manage to get a reader-base? What…is your quest?

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      I think I sort of answered this in a couple of my other responses but I think doing things like this, interacting with your readers, and actually wanting to get to know them is the most important thing if you want to build a following.

      I actually like communicating with people, I think based on the amount of design blogs I see that never respond to reader’s comments there are lots of bloggers who don’t value this part.

      • suzie s

        I really value it, especially since I only recently realized I could think of you as a person and not just an awesome website that exposes me to lovely work. No questions yet come to mind, just thank you. c:

      • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

        haha i’m a real person! I appreciate that suzie!

      • http://tunoestasbiendelacabeza.tumblr.com tunoestasbiendelacabeza

        no jeff you are now WEBSITE INCARNATE no backsies

      • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

        hahha

  • Maxine

    How did you decide to focus on showcasing and sharing the work of others online, as opposed to focusing solely on developing your own artistic practice?

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      Originally I was making my own work and Booooooom wasn’t called Booooooom it was a free wordpress site and I used it as my personal blog. That lasted only a month or so and I was completely bored talking about what I was doing all the time. Posting other people’s work was way more fun and I quickly saw it as an excuse to be able to contact artists whose work I loved. The minute I switched the focus off of me and onto other people it became a really powerful tool. I’m now friends with many artists I only knew from books and it’s really just because I’ve spent a lot of time trying to help other people see their work. I find most people email asking for something, if you email someone and tell them about how you’ve just done something for them for no reason other than to help them it really changes the way the respond.

      Now I’m at a point where I want to be able to spend more time making my own work so there is a bit of a struggle to make time for both. I don’t have any plans to stop running this site but I have to figure out ways to find a better balance. Looking at good work is really important, I think it makes your own work better but you also have to make time to not look at work, and go make things. I don’t want everyone to spend all day on Booooooom. Probably a dumb thing to say if I’m trying to live off of people visiting, but it’s meant to be something you look at in between making your own things.

  • chromasy

    When Boooooom was still in it’s hobby phase, was there a moment when you thought it wouldn’t surpass that – and if so what would of been the next option for you career wise?

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      I never thought Booooooom would become my job. For the first two years I was working on it I was doing freelance graphic design, running it for fun and completely content for it to remain a hobby.

      I never liked freelance graphic design, it’s something I have the skills for but I hated making changes to things that I liked simply because someone else didn’t. My favourite part about running Booooooom is that I can do whatever I want everyday.

      I always wanted to be involved with making movies and music videos when I was younger so if the site hadn’t taken off I would probably be pursuing that. The nice thing is I can still do those things now. I also enjoy writing and making comics so it doesn’t necessarily have to be film, it could be story-telling in any number of ways.

  • hagslae

    I’m currently in Vancouver, but my list of reasons to stay here keeps getting shorter. What keeps you based in Vancouver, both as an artist and a dude?

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      I love Vancouver and I think it’s because I don’t have an extreme personality. I can’t live anywhere permanently where it’s insanely busy or insanely quiet. It’s the most balanced city I’ve been to. You can be downtown loft apartment guy or you can drive 30 mins out of the city and be log cabin in the forest guy. We have seasons, I couldn’t live in Hawaii, as beautiful as it is, because I like having seasons.

      Vancouver’s the perfect size for starting things. It’s just big enough to find an audience and small enough that if you spend two years doing anything you can own it, you’re the guy that’s known for that. Many people end up leaving once they have their momentum but I think I stay because it’s actually better for me to stay, for what I’m doing anyways. There are very few Canadian art blogs (how many can you name?) and there are even less based here in Vancouver. So from a business standpoint it makes more sense to stay here – I’m the only one doing what I’m doing here.

      I get invites to several New York based events every week so I’m sure there are opportunities I am missing out on by not being based there, but my interests are not limited to art, and drinking wine at art events. I like camping and hiking and fishing and if I’d rather be doing those things.

  • FREnchfire

    Who do you think has been the most influential artist of the last ten years? Being that this is an incredibly over-saturated era in art and design do you think anyone has heavily influenced this recent period?

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      Jay-Z.

      I think rap culture has had far more cultural influence in the last decade than any painter or designer or photographer. Everyone uses rap slang, every email and text I get the person signs off with “Peace” or uses “Yo” somewhere in it. It’s actually weird when someone texts you nowadays with proper english and correct grammar. When is the last time you made sure to put punctuation in a text message?

      I realize Jay-Z is not solely responsible for the way we talk to each other now, but it’s not just the language we’re living in the era of the entrepreneur. The self-made success story. I think Jay-Z represents all of that and people really identify with is. More people know who Jay-Z is than know who Damien Hirst is.

  • Nomin

    Are you involved at all with the Powell Street Festival? What are some cool and interesting ways someone not from Vancouver can engage the communities throughout Vancouver?

    What do you think about Seattle?

    Best coffee in Vancity?

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      I’m not involved with it right now but I’ve met with one of the organizers a couple times. As a Japanese person I feel a special connection to it.

      If by “someone not from Vancouver” I assume you mean you are living here now and you’re just new to the area (as opposed to someone not living here). I definitely recommend going to events like Creative Mornings or Pecha Kucha, anything where people meet up to share creative experiences really. And then make an effort to talk to someone new at those events. It’s easy to go to them and still not connect with anyone new, I think it will always involve stepping out of your comfort zone a bit.

      I’m not a huge coffee drinker actually I mean I drink it but I can’t tell good from great. So maybe instead of best coffee I’ll pick my fav coffee shops just for the vibe inside of them? I like Matchstick Coffee Roasters and 49th Parallel in Mount Pleasant (where I live).

  • Elizabeth

    What is your favorite medium to showcase on Booooooom? Do you ever find yourself leaning towards one type of aesthetic or style?

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      I love featuring painting the most I think. It usually has the most evidence of the human hand in it. That imperfect quality is something that I think has been the one constant through most of the posts since I started the site.

  • Jesse

    Its amazing to see the volume of quality content that you put out on Booooooom. How many hours a day do you work? What does a typical work day look like for Jeff Hamada? How do you structure your day to be most efficient?

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      I usually start working on posts in the late evening and work until around 3am (at least). When I wake up I work a bit then go meet someone for lunch meeting then come home and work a bit more. It’s probably about 10 hrs a day during the week and don’t do too much work Friday/Saturday as I do most of Friday’s work on Thursday evening and I start working on Monday’s posts on Sunday.

      I don’t really like scheduling posts too far in advance so what you’re seeing most days are things I found the evening before. Mixed in with all of it are submissions I get sent via Facebook and Tumblr. I had to move art submissions out of my personal email because it gave me anxiety to see a hundred unread emails at any given time. Actually when I used to take email submissions I couldn’t get my inbox under 2500 emails if you can believe that. It would just build up continuously (especially over weekends) and I couldn’t keep up.

      I’d love it if more people started actively using Google+ only because it would make going through submissions so much faster as it’s essentially a Pinterest board that I can scroll through really quickly.

      • Jesse

        thanks for the insight Jeff

      • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

        Cheers Jesse

  • Erin Wong

    You expose a lot of great art to people who may not see it otherwise. As an artist myself trying to gain exposure, do you have any tips on getting your work noticed by more people?

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      I think working in series works well. So if you are a photographer or painter coming up with a concept and running with it to where you have a substantial amount of work that fits that theme. Post it somewhere as a set. I find blogs are more likely to feature a series of consistent work than random little things that have nothing to do with one another.

      There are also sites like Notcot.org where you can submit your “story” and if they like it they’ll post it. Find a bunch of those kinds of sites and when you have a bunch of new work send it out to all of them.

  • Jessie Brodsky

    I’m headed out to Vancouver in the next couple of weeks and I’d like to see what the city has to offer as far as art galleries and museums. I work in a museum in Miami now and would potentially like to relocate, I don’t even know where to start exploring the Vancouver art scene though. This is probably over broad and general but i thought maybe worth a shot to hear about your favorite places.

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      If you leave Miami to come to Vancouver to open a gallery you may get discouraged. It’s extremely small here. The big Vancouver Art Gallery brings in amazing shows, Contemporary Art Gallery, Interurban, Gallery Jones, there’s a handful of galleries I’d tell you to check out but it’s a tough scene to survive as a traditional gallery space here.

      We definitely don’t have something like Art Basel happening in our city but maybe that’s why you’re leaving. I think if you come in here realizing the situation – the potential – then it could be a really exciting opportunity. I would love it if someone opened up a gallery and brought in shows like Lazarides does (I’ve been asked to do one myself a couple times) no one is really doing that here, but it’s easier said than done I guess.

      • Jessie Brodsky

        thanks jeff! any galleries that really stand out to you?

  • Ruchita

    What is your tip on engaging with customers of twitter? This space seems to be getting cluttered by the day. How to make a difference and a mark?
    @travelopod

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      I think if you’re putting time into it, using it as a tool for communicating, people will respond. i do use it to let people know about content on Booooooom throughout the day but I also use it a lot to just have conversations with people.

      i think all the shortcuts out there to have Twitter automatically re-post things from all your other social channels is something no one is interested in. building up an audience anywhere takes time and there is no short cutting it.

  • alucianogena

    would like to know how the remake project book is going?

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      It’s going slow but it’s still coming along, the process of getting rights for all the original master works is tough because you’re dealing with different museums and sometimes there are additional artist rights you need to get but it’s still moving along at the pace I expected!

  • Cristina

    Since we live in an era where we can choose to have constant exposure to the work of other artists through media and websites such as Booooooom, do you have any advice on maintaining creativity and originality in your personal work? Although I recognize the importance of maintaining awareness of contemporary work, I have found that as an artist there is a constant struggle in trying to create something original when you are constantly viewing and comparing to the work of other artists.

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      This is a great question and something I think about and struggle with myself. I think it’s important to look but at what point do you stop looking and start making? Can you do both at the same time?

      I think there is a point where you need to stop looking, put your head down, and make a bunch of stuff. Lots and lots. And do it without worrying whether or not someone else is making something similar. You will never make anything if you’re always worrying about this.

      For this reason I slowly want to shift my focus so that I’m spending less time curating work and more time making work and launching projects that will encourage people to make more work. Partly for the benefit of the readers but also partly for myself, for my own creative health.

      This may also result in tutorial videos or content/resources to give people other reasons to look at Booooooom other than “oh hey thats cool, thats cool, thats cool, thats cool” forever.

  • Dave

    2 questions: 1) How did you decide how many “o”s to put in booooooom – was it so you could make the 3×3 configuration in your avatar? 2) Aside from not enjoying freelancing, why did you decide to shift your full-time focus to the blog? Was there a point where the blog started making more money than freelancing?

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      1) Yes. That’s really the only reason, soon after that I tried to register different amounts of o’s but they were all taken so it was meant to be.

      2) I’m just gonna go ahead and say freelancing as a designer is the worst until you are able to demand a fair amount of money for your ideas. This is a really difficult level to get to when you are constantly undermined by high school kids on Craigslist doing logos for $50. You will always end up having to convince people you are worth the money. It sucks, it’s a total drag. Most creatives are not good at this so that is why they starve. You have to be both a business person and a creative person to survive freelancing as a designer and so few people are good at both. Even if you can do both, thinking about the business side of things for even one hour kills any chance of generating new ideas and being totally free and creative for the other 7 hours (at least for me it does).

      I had no choice I had to quit otherwise I would have gone insane.

      From a money making stand-point the reality is more people are looking to run ads on high-traffic websites than are looking to have logos designed. They are also willing to pay more money, at least more than most of the people who asked me to design their logos. So I thought to myself why pull my hair out trying to convince someone to pay me even a couple thousand dollars for a logo when I could potentially be paid to spend all day looking at art. I made the switch and while I’m not insanely rich, I answer to no one, and can do what I want all the time. That’s a trade off I’ll take 100% of the time.

      • Dave

        cool thanks, I really appreciate you taking the time to do this. I used to do graphic design too and got fed up being an hourly mouse-clicker. There’s only so much time in a day. I’ve been observing a lot of people “giving up their day job” to blog or run a small web-based company full time and I hope to someday do the same. I know you work hard but I’m jealous of the freedom and flexibility you have with your time. Thanks again.

      • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

        Cheers

  • Rudamuda

    How did this blog evolve into a full time job for you? I see that people can advertise but I haven’t noticed any ads, so i’m interested in how running a really popular blog actually becomes a sustainable source of income

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      When your blog gets to a certain size you will inevitably be approached by ad networks. I deal with several different ad networks and they pitch me ad campaigns and I can choose whether or not to run them.

      It’s really important for me to balance living off the site with the readers’ experience though. The readers’ experience is the most important thing and I always ask myself if I would visit my site if I wasn’t the one running it.

      If you’re thinking of trying to live off of your website you can assume you’ll have to spend a full year working at least part time hours (20 hrs a week) posting regularly each week before you can get a regular audience and any sort of traffic that a network will look at.

      At least a year! It took me two.

  • Morgan

    Hi Jeff, I really enjoyed your Creative Mornings talk, and loved being in the crowd at Creative Mornings just to be around so many creative and open people in Vancouver. What other events, places, etc. would you recommend that help foster the creative community in Vancouver?

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      To be honest I don’t know of many others off hand other than Pecha Kucha. I am also looking for other events myself – this was why I organized that free screening of Efterklang’s film awhile ago. I’d love to do more of that, having my own creative space to host those kinds of things would help.

  • Corey Jordan

    Hey Jeff, I really appreciate your willingness to expose new and upcoming artists, especially those practicing in photographic or illustrated genres, however, the work you often portray runs within a spectrum of ‘hype’ and ‘refined internet design’ where a lot of the artists you showcase tend to be making work simply about pattern (illustration), or atmospheric lighting/emotion (photography), or a repetitive interest in refining their skill rather then exploring more evocative conceptual ideals (painting). Much of the work you promote simply looks ‘good’ or feels ‘cool’ rather then touches on a lot of actual personal or social issues and much of it seems to be accepted simply because it’s on your blog or is a part of the tumbler/instagram/vine fad train.

    As someone who has the power to expose a large following to new ideas, how do you feel about curating an ‘ideal’ of art-making in todays internet/technology based field and what do you think the results of this will be ie. our willingness as an audience to agree with who you select as ‘artist’ and the actual value of their ‘artwork’?

    I’m a fan of always seeing new product from any genre, and understand that you curate based on your own interests but eventually I’m sure you realize that a ‘concept’ or ‘idea’ becomes stagnant if over exposed so do you see yourself eventually moving away or forward from what has become the predictable nature of your blog?

    I apologize if that sounds conflicting, but I’m a believer of criticism as a tool to better our artist growth and not a tool for emotional attack, if that makes sense.

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      Hey Corey first of all thanks for taking the time to ask these questions,

      I have to admit this is the first time I’ve ever heard the term “refined internet design” I’m not even sure what it means or how it’s a negative thing. I know what “hype” means and it suggests the content is not worth the excitement it’s garnering. Most of the illustrators I post about are not garnering enough recognition in my opinion, but I can’t argue this point because it’s a matter of personal taste.

      Your statement that I’m posting work primarily about pattern is just confusing. I couldn’t remember the last post I made about an illustrator focused on patterns so I looked and it was 29 illustrations posts ago. In terms of variety, the last five posts were:

      -Kilian Eng a Sci-Fi illustrator from Sweden heavily influenced by Moebius.

      -Simon Landerin a comic illustrator from London whose work is extremely bold and graphic.

      -Evan Hecox, San Francisco. Probably the most well-known of the bunch. The works I chose here are mixed media collage works.

      -Jillian Tamaki, Brooklyn. The work I selected here is an older series by her, illustrations of Irish Myths, fairly traditional style illustration here.

      -Fumi Koike, Japan. A series of rooms, hand-painted. Perhaps the least well known, I’d never seen her work until the night before I posted it.

      I could go on but I am just trying to show that even in the last few illustration posts I’ve made there is a healthy mix of male and female illustrators, 4 countries represented, 5 completely different styles and methods, some known, some not, and the content ranges from self-directed personal work to commissioned film posters, some funny, some historical, etc.

      Here’s a brief summary of the last photography posts as well:

      A photo book from Yael Malka and Cait Oppermann, two recent grads at the start of the career documenting a trip through Europe.

      Insane Asylum Patients’ suitcases photographed by photographer Jon Crispin from the year 1910 to 1960.

      5 photographers that I like utilizing Instagram.

      Nana Ijiri (Japan) and before that Osma Harvilahti (Finland)

      A couple posts before that “War Through a Woman’s Eyes”, an article about contemporary female war photographers.

      I don’t know how these posts could be more diverse than this? I feel like you’re trying hard to criticize something without actually looking at it. I pride myself on choosing diverse work, on a variety of topics, from different parts of the world, shot by an extremely broad scope of people (old, young, fresh out of school to magnum)

      One of your main criticisms of the photos I choose is that they are all about emotion. This is one thing we actually agree on but I fail to see how that is a bad thing? So what you really want is work that lacks emotion?

      These exciting “new ideas” by real illustrations and real photographers (as opposed to the “hyped” ones) that I’m continually failing to feature sound great, where are they? What do they look like? Who is making them? If you could share some examples that would be great as I would love to expand my viewpoint for what is out there.

      Your statements question the value, the relevancy, and the necessity of my site and believe me I question these three things everyday while I work on it. If you spend more time curating your own site you’ll eventually realize that you can only make something more broad and more diverse to a certain point, and after that point you are no longer curating at all.

      • Corey Jordan

        Hey Jeff, thanks for responding to my questions and engaging in this dialogue, I really appreciate it. I apologize for the misdirected or confusing use of words in my questions though, I could have focused my thoughts better.

        I’ve been following your blog for over a year now and make an effort to look at everything you post. I guess I’ve just become familiar with what you prefer to showcase and so my critique’s aren’t really justified since anyone blogging online is entitled to post whatever they want. There is certainly a large amount of variety on Booooooom and you’ve done a great job on continuing to keep it that way.

        My thoughts on the ‘diversity’ of the work posted was meant more to be directed at the ‘content’ of the work artists were making rather then the artists themselves. To give you an idea of what I mean, I’ve listed the artists who’s work I feel is ‘forward thinking’ or ‘real photography/painting’ (as you put it) vs. the work I feel is more ‘hyped’:

        Like: Lesley Ann Ercolano, Charlie Engman, Will Robson-Scott, Aaron J. Gilbert, Jason Gowans, Cedric Dubus, Amani WIllett, Travis Millard, Ji Yeo

        Don’t really like: So Youn Lee, Max Kauffman, Troy Moth, Ivan Alifan, Ashley Loyd, Caroline Makintosh, Till Rabus, Vonn Sumner

        I don’t wish you prove a point but i’m interested in the lines blurred between ‘contemporary art’ as viewed by the critical art world and what you highlight, especially when it comes to illustration, painting, and photography. Maybe you could touch on that thought a little more and the idea of ‘internet success’ as a visual artist vs. ‘real-world success’?

  • Belle

    Do your give-aways ship to Asia? Singapore in particular? Haha :P
    On a more serious note tho… How do you manage to continuously find such varied and inspiring works?

    Anyways, love the commitment ^^ cheers!

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      unless they specify that they are only open to a certain region then they are open worldwide!

      to find new work all the time it takes commitment. it’s not hard work, it’s lots and lots of work. i spend several hours each day looking.

      something else to consider is that all the most popular art sites are sent the same press releases so it’s also a balance of not posting some work (even when i think its great) just so Booooooom isn’t the same as every other site.

      for this reason curating work these days is just as much (if not more) about saying “no” to work that is put in front of you as it is about searching for work to say “yes” to.

      you used to have to travel to Japan to find rare shoes now there are “rare” shoes everywhere.

  • chaunce

    what do you feel when you see content worth featuring?

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      i think i feel two kinds of excitement. the one kind is me being excited by the work, what it looks like, the ideas behind it, seeing something new or an old idea flipped a new way. the other kind is the excitement that it is a fit for Booooooom and the anticipation of sharing it with others and hearing what they think about it.

      so even when the work is subtle or quiet i still get excited by it.

  • mike ideas

    If you had to change one of your worst habits, what would it be and how would you change it?

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      worst habit might be staying up all night working on the site. slowly working on changing this, hopefully have some help with the site moving forward so that i don’t have to work as many hours to accomplish the same tasks

      • mike ideas

        Seek and find.

  • chrissy

    how do i get on your art blog?

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      you have a few options, you can submit your work through the Tumblr page, on the Booooooom Facebook wall, or you can submit through Google+ I’ve set up a submissions community there!

  • Lil

    Do you like birds? I guess i saw a few bird things around here.. or maybe a lot of people like to to make things about them?

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      i love birds.

  • Penny

    I love visiting this website to be inspired and motivated but sometimes it is difficult for me to find back the artists I was inspired by. So I was thinking if you could let us favourite the artist or something it will be so so so cool. Like to keep track of something. Well, I am just suggesting (: Btw, I love boooooom!

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      hi there Penny, i appreciate the suggestion. there’s no simple way for me to do this (that i know of) unless i completely redesign the site – a re-design actually may not be that far off so i will keep it in mind. in the mean time you could always bookmark any page you like :-)

  • urhajos

    Jeff, i wish i could once be listed with my blog in the cool stuff tab. urhajos@tumblr

  • artistdebk

    I am starting a website..how do I turn it into a full time job and how do I get paid?

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      this has been talked about in the questions below but one aspect i’d like to reiterate is that you shouldn’t start a site with the intent to make money from it and turn it into your full time job.

      do something you love, something that interests you. connect with other people who love that thing. communicate with those people everyday.

      if you’re able to create a place people will return to day after day you have a shot of turning it into a living. getting advertisers is actually the easy part, the hard part is getting the following in the first place.

      you have to build relationships with your readers the same way you do with anyone in real life. it takes time.

  • Jes Hoskin

    Seeing as we are in an age where we have a huge amount of quantitive data/statistics just a google search away, have you seen people using this information creatively in a way that is exciting? Is it something you feel that needs to be done, or left alone? Cheers!

    • http://www.booooooom.com/ Jeff Hamada

      i love art that has to do with data and the Internet, you should check out Kim Asendorf’s work:

      http://kimasendorf.com

      Yahoo Search Loop for instance is a loop with a randomly selected word from the current search result in order to start the next search.

      http://kimasendorf.com/yahoosearchloop/