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You've Got to be Kidding...

Keep it Local


Jonathan van Bilsen

July 13, 2023

Keep it Local

I have had the pleasure of travelling all over the world, photographing some extremely exotic locales. The problem is, I have amassed over a quarter of a million photographs, which I have painstakingly narrowed down to 4,000 of my best.

They appear on social media, websites and catalogues, but when people ask to purchase prints, I scratch my head at the labour intensive process. If only I had a simple system of selling these prints.

Just when I was about to abandon the concept, I came across a local government entity, called Digital Main Street. I was introduced to them through the Scugog Chamber of Commerce, and quickly realized they were offering grants for people wishing to enhance their digital profile. I applied, and with a little assistance, I was approved.

My next step was to find someone who could redesign my website, to not only display my 4,000 photos, but also make them available to anyone for purchase. I did not have to look far, as Chris and Kristen Creamer, fantastic social media and marketing experts, stepped up to the plate.

Chris has been in the web business for most of his life (I believe he started when he was around eight). Kristen, the marketing guru, designed an amazing site, and after a few tweaks, Chris began to build it. It took less time than I anticipated, as I imagined loading 4,000 photos would be time consuming.

Not only did they build the site, they also posted all the articles I have written (about 350 of them). They added links for people to watch all my television shows, and there is also access to the dozen or so books, which have been published.

The site is going live next week, but in its test phase, I have had numerous requests for people to purchase historic Port Perry prints, as well current ones.

I am very excited about the site, and grateful to Digital Main Street. More so, I am extremely impressed with the two local people, who are entrepreneurs and fantastic visionaries, who brought the concept to life.

It goes to show you what local talent lies within our midst. Oh yes, my site is

Jonathan van Bilsen is a television host, award winning photographer, published author, columnist and keynote speaker. Watch his show, ‘Jonathan van Bilsen’s photosNtravel’, on RogersTV, the Standard Website or YouTube.

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