before instagram -and a bit of a rant

Posted on Sep 22, 2011 in All Articles, Artistic Temperament, Featured Articles, Photography & Art, Thoughts

These days social networks’ inhabitants can often be divided into pro-instagram and anti-instagram.

The former usually don’t put much thought into it, they just post happily their photographs after a quick post-processing with instagram’s filters. The latter are either tired of the way more than we need and are able to follow through human measure instagram posts or can’t put up with the fact that instagram processed photographs are often mistaken (a strong word, I know, a stronger one comes soon) for art and, as a further consequence, sometimes act as an excuse for pro-instagrammers to post complete and utter bullshit (I told you).

Let’s start with the easiest case to understand; when someone thinks of something as art, automatically drops any logical thresholds that may apply prior to sharing it on a social network. A bad photograph won’t get any better with instagram. You can’t filter out a bad shot. It is as simple as that.

The other case is when we have a photograph worthy to share on a social network but not in the form of art per se. There are many definitions for art and I wouldn’t dare to choose any single one to present as the norm. What I believe though to be a prerequisite for it, is a mix of self creativity -even in the form of imitation- and the investment of personal time. Instagram, in the common case, almost minimizes these two conditions to null. When prerequisites for art are minimized to such an extend, the result unavoidably becomes kitch and bothers.

Of course I have to admit that there are numerous talented people using instagram and the above doesn’t apply to them. Also there are people not that talented but with an understanding of which photo can be instagrammed and which should be uploaded to other photo-hosts without any effects applied. The problem is that the vast majority of instagram bombing we get daily, isn’t coming from them.

Below is an old post-processed photograph of mine. I shot it and edited it about 6 years before instagram was born. It may not qualify as art but I can assure you that a certain amount of time and thought was invested during both the scene composition and the edit process.



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