Social media platforms are a good way to share images but it’s important to remember how people use them, and to consider their limitations. Some images on social media are poor and social media is generally not a good reference tool for learning about photography, except to follow people whose work you like and think is good. Nial McDiarmid is an example of a photographer who has successfully used Instagram to promote his photography. Better resources for strong photography more generally include the British Journal of Photography and American Suburb X. When considering pros and cons of social media, it’s important to remember that comments on images from followers should be considered with an open mind. Some people just like images or follow others in the hope that the favour will be returned.
Hashtagging can be useful to help promote images and help people find them. However, it is open to interpretation and images may not appear to fit the genre or category tagged. This may sometimes be done deliberately to broaden the appeal of the image and increase the number of search hits and likes.
I looked at Instagram, searching for #landscape and #action to see what sort of images came up. I then printed images that I liked which, in my opinion, fitted the genre and also images that didn’t. It was interesting to see the sorts of images people had tagged as landscape or action, some of which could only loosely be considered under those categories, in my opinion.
This week we also had some fun taking abstract images by dripping glycerin containing food colouring into a tank of water, lit continuously from the side.