There is nothing instant about Instagram. This was my first surprise when I started using the extremely popular app that all the crazy kids seem to be using now a-days. Or maybe not the kids, but the young adults. I hear there’s this other app the young ones use called SnapChat. Did I just show my age? Sigh.
In any case, back to my original complaint. Instagram is not instant as the name implies. I decided to try out Instagram because it looked like people were having a lot of fun posting highly processed photos on a never ending news feed. Take a photo, play around with some filter options, post, and wait for the likes to pour in. Sounded easy to me.
I should have known that that little process already hinted at a ‘less than instant’ status. I couldn’t get through that process in less than 5 minutes, usually much longer. There are just too many filter options to choose from. Every time I took a photo that I wanted to post, I’d get sucked into my phone making minute adjustments to my grainy photo with all the pickiness of someone trained in advanced Photoshop.
I was becoming one of those people whose eyes are glued to her phone instead of the world around her. Sucked in.
And yet so fun. There is something to be said about the supposed downfall of real life social connections due to smart phones, but that’s a whole different rant. I’m not blaming Instagram for what seems to be an entire generation of socially awkward sometimes rude youth of today. Instagram is just an app. A tool. I love it.
Instagram is a great platform for sharing photos whether it be happy snaps or professional marketing campaigns. I’ve seen it used as a powerful brand shaping tool used to open a dialogue between companies and its customers. It’s been used to create social awareness and perhaps even social change through its global reach. It’s also a great way to bring photography back to some basics for the little everyday people such as myself.
I use it as a reminder to take those happy snap pictures that I spy everyday instead of walking right past them. With no technical aspects to consider such as shutter speed or aperture, my camera phone allows me to focus more on composition and timing my shots. It’s relaxing and easy. It makes photography a hobby again, something that it ceased being for me over a decade ago. It’s like it’s retraining my eyes to search for pictures everywhere I go because I have this handy platform to share my little snippets with to friends and a whole community of strangers who also share my love for memorable moments. I work in a very controlled studio environment with professional models and a skilled team. My camera phone lets me shoot something different for no other reason than just because. I’m observing and exploring more, and In that way I’m refuelling my creativity. I just need to remember to do my editing after returning home.
Find me on Instagram under Photographiser to see what I shoot when I’m not shooting.