Blogger adventure: Jonathan Daniel Pryce of 100 Beards
Back in January, I interviewed Jonathan Daniel Pryce, one of my favourite menswear bloggers and the creative and photographic force behind the 100 Beards, 100 Days project and book. Danielle Meder, a blogger as talented at illustration as she is at introducing people, had introduced us last summer. In person, Jonathan is just as charming, thoughtful and stylish as his bearded man photos.
The first blog, Les Garçons de Glasgow (LGDG), was started in 2009 when I lived in Glasgow. The idea for the name had so many influences, one of which being my appreciation of what Rei Kawakubo did with Comme des Garçons (CDG). The most commercially successful CDG pop-up store in the world was in Glasgow so it was also a small nod to that.
I came up with the Les Garçons de Glasgow name when planning a trip to Paris. I had France on the brain and it just popped in my head – I think it has a real ring to it. When I started my menswear blog I needed a connecting name and so Another Garçon (AG) was born.
You started blogging in Glasgow and kept going when you moved to London. Do you think the change of city changed the way you blog?
When blogging from Glasgow I was still travelling a lot – attending fashion week in London and Paris every season, and making trips across Europe. My approach, although Glasgow-centric, wasn’t too narrow. I moved to Paris before London and considering it now, I think a change in blogging culture evolved my blogging style more than a change of city. When I started blogging in 2007, the blogosphere was an entirely different place. It’s amazing to consider how much changes in six years.
Your 100 Beards project, now a book, was hosted on Tumblr, whereas your blog is on Blogger. Why the platform difference?
When starting the 100 Beard project, I wanted a format that was simple, easily understandable and the best place to host one photo per day. As photos are hosted on Tumblr directly (I use Photobucket with my blogger blogs) it made my life easier but but it was also more translatable for the user, who is accustomed to viewing images on Tumblr.
Did you set out to make a book out of the 100 Beards projects or was it a nice side effect of the project, and if so how did it happen?
My original ambition was to do an exhibition in London. I’ve shown my work across the United Kingdom (Glasgow, Edinburgh, Newcastle, Belfast to name a few) and Paris but never in London so I though it would make a nice end to 2012. About 30 days into the project the hits on 100 beards was doubling that of Les Garçons de Glasgow and Another Garçon. The press attention was also huge including GQ, Glamour, Grazia, WGSN so I thought a book may be a nice way to encapsulate the project as a whole. I’m very proud to say that the first edition sold out in just three weeks.
Whereas Les Garçons de Glasgow mixed women and men street style photography, Another Garçon has a strong men focus – why the evolution?
My personal interest lies in menswear, both in design and on the street. When developing Les Garcons de Glasgow it was the next, natural step. Now that we (me and my blogging partner and friend of LGDG, Daniel) have moved to London, Les Garçons de Glasgow has lost some of it’s relevancy, and we are no longer working on that blog I’m actually in the process of updating AG with a format and name change as I type! It’s been running for about 18 months now so it’s time for a change.*
Aside from your blogging work, you work as a social media consultant – how does the blog fit in your professional life?
Blogging is a great way to showcase what I can do for clients. All my clients are in the lifestyle or fashion sector, so AG is very relevant to what is possible for a brand. My academic and professional background is in marketing so over the years I’ve worked on some excellent campaigns for some wonderful companies. Since moving to London and winning my award last June I’ve had a huge amount of interest in my photography and that’s what most of my clients are asking for now.
How do you want your blog to evolve?
Photography is really my focus for the next year. I’m developing my editorial work, which is very exciting, meaning that the blog should feature a lot more fashion stories. I’d like to resolve all the different blogs I run, so they can all be seen in one place. I have Another Garçon, 100 Beards and whatever my next blogging project will be, so it’d be good for my readers to see my work all together.
Do you have any project to take over from 100 Beards?
That’s the question on everyone’s lips! I have no idea just now but I’m waiting for inspiration to hit. Right now, I’ve gone beyond 100 days and am continuing to photograph some beards on the blog. It’s hard to quit the habit! The new work will be featured in the second edition of the 100 Beards book, along with many more unseen photos, which can be preordered at 100beards.bigcartel.com.
* This interview was conducted back in January. Since then, Another Garçon has become Garçonjon.com.
All photos are from Jonathan’s Tumblr, 100 Beards, 100 Days