It's coming up to my 4 year blog anniversary which seems absolutely mad. I feel that things have changed so much over the time I've been blogging and I've learnt a lot about how to do things and the way things have moved on in the blogging world. When I created my blog as a hobby I never thought that it could turn into what it is now and be going full time with it. I've been thinking back about some of the main things that have changed over the four years I've been blogging.

When I first began taking photos to use in posts I was borrowing a camera and attempting to get the bests shots possible while attempting to learn how to use it. I didn't really plan them out or spend time getting the setup correct, it was more a case of laying the products out and snapping away. I'd take quite a few photos of the products and then just choose my favourites. I did start to edit my photos but to be honest this mostly just meant brightening them a little bit. After nearly two years, I saved up money from my job and bought myself an Olympus Pen. This was a game changer and meant the quality of my photos noticeably improved. For my photos now, I spent a lot more time thinking about what I want them to look like, which props and backdrops to use and making sure I get the best lighting possible.

Working with brands
Getting sent products for review is a great opportunity to try out new products but also to give honest reviews to people who may be thinking about buying them. It first started out with one item whereas now I can find myself getting a new collection to test out. I've also expanded the type of companies I've worked with to include restaurants as well as home and lifestyle-related products. This has meant I've been able to try out places that I may never have thought about before. When I started doing my first paid collaborations they were sponsored posts where I would help companies advertise their products or services. More recently, this has expanded to include sponsored content on social media platforms such as Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. One thing that hasn't changed is that you still see some companies trying to pay you £10 for a bunch of follow links, and with this, my stance on what's right and wrong hasn't changed and I still refuse them.

Writing and blog style
I remember saying hello to my readers in each post as if it was a video but started to realise this wasn't the style I wanted to go for. There's no correct way of doing it but you need to find what works for you and how you want your posts to come across. I've noticed the style change across other bloggers as I think that there has been a shift towards more of an editorial style as opposed to a diary format. On the visual side of my blog, I began with one of the basic themes that blogger provide. Since then I've switched between a few different ones and now found one that I love and feel that it suits me, my content and what I'm trying to deliver.

Social media and blog community
On Twitter, there used to be a blogger chats pretty much every day the host would ask a series of questions around a particular topic. In more recent times, it has sometimes been used as a way of causing drama between bloggers, whether this is related to buying followers or even just disagreements on a topic. I feel Twitter is the best platform to interact with people and grow your following. Instagram didn't always follow a certain theme that people tried to fit into and there wasn't a worry about the follower to following ratio. The new algorithm introduced has made the feeds not be in chronological order, reduced your visibility and we've become victim to the follow/unfollow game. On the positive side, Insta now has the ability to create stories, slideshows and is a platform used to shout out to other bloggers to recognise their work.