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  • Writer's pictureJefferson Graham

Thanks a million, PhotowalksTV fans!

It happened this week:

I was attending the WPPI convention in Las Vegas, a meeting of wedding and portrait photographers, when I received an e-mail from VidIQ, a YouTube analytics tool.

“Congratulations, you reached 1,000,000 views.”

Or, let’s put it this way: After five years (first episode posted 3/26/2018) of beating the drum for PhotowalksTV, my travel photography series on YouTube, the combined views now tops 1 million.

In the annals of YouTube, this number may not seem so big, but in my little world, it’s huge. It’s validation for the concept born back in 2018 for a different type of travel show that marries our love of roaming with fascination with smartphones and getting better vacation photos. (Thank you Bill Weiner for helping to crystalize the concept!)

So I just wanted to take a moment and thank all the supporters for checking out the show, (see video above) as well as all the great people who have helped me make what is seemingly a one-person production come to life.

Yes, I roam around with my selfie stick/tripod, carrying a second iPhone in my pocket, set up the shot, get additional coverage on GoPros and Insta360 cameras and my drone, and edit everything myself. But I do get a lot of help from my friends.

People who have been nice enough to appear on camera with me and show me their towns, from Nicolas Gauthier in Paris and Jose Manuel Santos in Porto to Susan Dimmock in tiny Bandon, Oregon and Ginger DiNunzio in Morro Bay, along with so many others! The barber in Safety Harbor, accordion player in Solvang, Crepe maker in Lyon, France, sandwich master in San Francisco and all the tourism reps.

And how about a hand for my pal Rich DeMuro for helping me out on my thank you video!

I occasionally had assist with camera duties: huge thanks to Tony Prince and Sean Fujiwara, Mike Ansell, Jez and Lily Graham, my wife Ruth Stroud and Scott Heath.)

For music, which is so important, my mentor and guitar teacher Paul Ellis was kind enough to collaborate with me on the new theme (introduced for the 2022 Backroads series of episodes) the one with the slide guitar, as well as all those solo classical guitar pieces. My brother Jez also offered his stellar musical ditties, as did his son Bill (for the Savannah episode) and I played a few tunes along the way. My friend Peter Spirer offered some great contemporary rock compositions from the Rugged Entertainment library. Elsewhere, I’ve pulled from the free YouTube audio library often, usually from a group called TrackTribe.

Support: None of these would have been possible without the generous support of three great companies: SmugMug/Flickr, the photo sharing service, Mylio Photos, software to backup and keep track of all your photos, and Flipboard, the social magazine.

Most Influential Booster

That would be Mark Thompson, the former KGO San Francisco host who now livestreams Monday through Friday on YouTube and recommends the show enthusiastically to his fans every Thursday when I go my guest spot. The subscriber count jumps every time—thanks again Mark, and don’t forget to smash that like button with an iron rod!

The top 10:

(Check out the thank you video above—shot at one of the great L.A. delis—Art’s, where every sandwich is a work of art!)

The Big question

Along with what kind of camera to buy, should I get the new iPhone now or wait, and who makes that selfie stick you always walk around with: where’s the best place you’ve ever been to?

I can say, pretty easily, that it’s hard to top Paris, which is easily the greatest city in the world. The architecture, the history, the sights and yes, even the people. How can you not love running around with your camera in a city where every street offers a different adventure?

Best Comment

After I posted on LinkedIn about crossing 1 million views, Marci McCue wrote this: “Wow! So lucky to be a part of your journey... from graffiti walls, to small towns... watching the weather change at Manhattan beach, going on road trips across the country and even touring other countries! It's so fun to see all these places through your lens.” Thank you Marci (and Mike!)

Coming up for PhotowalksTV in 2023:

We’ve got several fun things in the works. Next week I’ll take you to the garage roofs of Las Vegas (I went to more than 15 of them for research) for the best photo spots of Sin City, we’re headed back to Japan to explore Osaka and have a western summer trip that will take us to Badlands National Park and follow up in the fall with Scotland.

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