3 hours ago
|To Instagram, or not to Instagram? That is the question:|
Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The trails and tribulations of Photoshop,
Or to take arms against a sea of faux-retro filters,
And by opposing end them?
"Because when you apply a parlor trick filter to your photo, you're not enhancing it, you're destroying it. You're robbing it of its realness, its nuance, and replacing it with garbage that serves no function other than to aggrandize your own false sense of artisanship.
And make no mistake, you aren't an artist.
If you were an artist, you wouldn't be using Instagram in the first place. You certainly wouldn't be using a filter as a crutch. At the end of the day, that's what Instagram filters are: a crutch, a misguided replacement for a properly composed shot and a decent sensor." Chris Ziegler, The VergeSome of the accusations levelled at Instagram are that it is essentially a lazy procedure in which the user is removed from the true creative process that goes into producing a good photograph. Creativity, it is argued, is killed off as the desire to experiment is sacrificed for expediency and convenience, with the result that everyone's photos end up looking the same. Perversely, in trying to make their photos stand out, the reliance of users on a small set of filters from one application that has taken off in popularity across the web will achieve exactly the opposite effect.
"Every photographer is an artist and every photograph is art, period. Every photographer is already interpreting and adding their own point of view to the things he or she photographs. The spread of tools like Instagram means that we are democratizing the ability of regular people to do more interpretation. To argue otherwise smacks of elitism." Dieter Bohn, The VergeWhile I can understand the misgivings over Instagram, I'm not convinced that the purpose of photography is always to act as a historical reference or accurate record of reality. Every time a photographer chooses to change the angle of a photo, adjust the white balance, crop out irrelevant details, accentuate the colour in post production, a degree of personal interpretation is being added and the image is being limited to what the photographer wants the viewer to see. Instagram seems like the logical conclusion to this artistic quest to use photography as a conduit for personal expression. It is however, a conclusion that has been made available to the masses without requiring them to attain any level of mastery in the technical skills usually required to produce quality images.
"Before humans ever wanted to be influential, we wanted to be beautiful. Not just beautiful in just the attractive sense, but we want people to look at us and feel things; desire, intrigue, interest. For hundreds of years we’ve been carefully curating our appearance, clothes, jewelry, cars and houses for visceral impact....
...Instagram makes our pictures less accurate, but what we lose in exactness we gain in the ability to create instant nostalgia and show our view of our subjects. At its core, Instagram is a simple tool that doesn’t make us better photographers, but better communicators of feelings and experiences, and that's what matters to people."This is less about presenting what we see but how we see it. As an artistic point of view this is just as valid as using the tricks and trades of traditional photography as we did to reinterpret this scene of trees.