Three reasons I avoided Instagr.am (and why I caved in)

As Anakin Skywalker was powerless (agonizing irony, I might add) when turning to the Dark Side, so to am I, locked in a internal battle with a little app called INSTAGR.AM. After much deliberation it came down to three reason (excuses?) why I avoided it like the plague.

Firstly, It was difficult for me to get behind an app that required no post-photo-editing skill/knowledge to render what would most likely be a lackluster image, into something masterful. Goading the viewer to achieve an image so…pretty.

Secondly, my first impressions –scratch that, my first, second, third (shall I continue?) impressions were that INSTAGR.AM was synonymous with food porn. And bad food porn at that. Lured in by creative and delightfully captivating captions, imagine to my horror, when the foods were horribly mis-represented by an overly zealous photo-editor. It’s difficult to recover from breaking my taste bud’s trust.

Finally, whats with the period in the middle of the name?! Look, I failed Grammar-Police Academy with flying colors (and apparently abuse idioms like a red headed step child, pardon my french) but I couldn’t stand to look at its spelling: INSTAGR.AM.

Okay, the last reason was purely an exploration of irrelevant rage, so we’ll just say the first two reasons were the real ‘why’s I avoided the free app. But in all seriousness, It came down to how confident I was in my own growing interest in photography. I wanted to scrape out from the bottom, to learn lessons the hard way, to pave my own road. And I wanted every photographer to do the same! True to my Leo nature, there was a wall of pride that just wouldn’t budge. And then this happened:

https://twitter.com/#!/tasialabastro/status/137307563409678336

I signed up. I sheathed my long sword of discrimination towards the app and downloaded it. It came down to really feeling secure about how much I love photography, the quality of imagery I’ve been able to capture and I join this community of artists and have something to contribute. As with any discipline, there’s still a core skill set that needs to be practiced. Specifically (in my opinion), it was subject and composition.Does the photo elicit a response while serving a subtly higher sense of aesthetic and technical proficiency?”  And not, “Honey, are these noodles in the picture, or silly party string?” I place a premium on photos that exude (but not force) a strong understanding of subject and composition.

In the end, I still get to share a passion, contribute to this wonderful community, and still have a bit of pride about it. Swallow pride, Shutterbug.

What were your thoughts on this app? If you wanted to convince someone to try this app, what would you tell them?

Author’s note: Primary camera – Canon 7D / Instagr.am on Apple iPhone – promoting the phrase, “The best camera is the one that’s with you.” The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not represent the global photo community.

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3 Comments Add yours

  1. Brian says:

    Firstly, in your main title you are missing the R in Instagr.am, the period in the middle of the title refers to the website that you can access the photos at, if you go to http://www.instagr.am that is the domain name. Personally I do like instagram for the ocassional snapshot and a quick filter to add to my photo, I do also enjoy the radial blur and horizontal blur features. But as a graphic artist I do think that this community has potential for the upcoming photographer, it challenges you to find subjects that are worthy of the community to obtain “likes”. Its all just another application in the realm of the social networking phenomena thats been storming the internet.

    1. Thanks for catching that. I’m not sure how I missed the “R”! And yes, I agree with your points. I’ve been using it for some time now and enjoy it. I find myself using instagr.am when I’ve time to really think about what I’m shooting. Otherwise, I’ll be using the default camera. I can appreciate how it can potentially jump start a person’s interest in photography. Thanks for stopping by.

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