Dear Instagram Universe
Being a codependent Insta user I instantly posted, hash tagged a copious number of times and added not once but twice to my story. The adrenaline induced ecstasy of instantaneous validation giving me an ethereal high better than anything drug induced I've ever experienced, there's a good chance I'm doing the drugs wrong. We will get back to that later.
I've been working really hard on understanding when the validation wares off and the rejoinder of disappointment takes over. There's always a moment when I see the number of likes and or comments, (many times it's the lack there of) and the validation becomes disappointment. Sometimes it's instantaneous other times it's prolonged an hour or so, the photograph or memory I thought was being conveyed through the post magically becoming an immense burden of disappointment, insecurity and inability. Normally this internal monologue and pattern of posting and adding to the story would continue all day but the french press queue reached me and I don't know if it was the coffee or Christmas spirit but by the time I reached the sludge at the bottom of my mug I realized it was time to make a change.
Word to the wise, if someone unfollows you on Christmas morning you didn't need them in the first place.
I'm overwhelmed with gratitude at the luck and opportunity I've been given in my short photography career. Somewhere commingled with "Instagram Success" I forgot why I began taking pictures. I began this so I could share my experiences with those close to me. As my audience has expanded it seems that this focus has become murky. I've been diligent about curating an Instagram feed that it seemed my followers wanted, putting my own feelings about certain pieces of work at bay, sacrificing for the "greater good." Being self taught and heavily reliant on emotional stimuli, there's probably nothing worse I could do for my art. Taking out the most relevant piece of my work and sterilizing it in an attempt to appease strangers.
Stop reading for a moment, if you've gotten this far and you can't relate to what I'm saying I implore you to stop reading, go to my Instagram page @fullframefotos and unfollow me. If you need an extra boost to do this confidently use this youtube link for reassurance from my 4th grade favorite song "I Saw the Sign" by Ace of Base, yes I was and still am a huge nerd.
Now on to being proactive. If you've just finished listening to Ace of Base for the first time in over a decade, you're welcome. How I ever stopped listening to these stunning ladies I don't know, thanks again Katie G for introducing me to them.
I'm not into traditional New Year's Resolutions, I actually try my best to throw irony at them. Last year I wrote and photographed a Pizza Editorial imploring people to eat more pizza in 2017 and I for one did just that. However, this year I'm making some big New Year's changes and I want you to be a part of them.
To begin with I'm going to be revamping my approach to my small Instagram platform to be art first (I have a very loose definition of art so just bare with me), like I always intended it to be, but there are a lot of exciting things I want you to be a part of. First and foremost what type of content is most relevant to you? Secondly what if anything can I help you with? I have a pretty big urge to help others with photographic instruction, adventure planning, trip decisions, photo equipment decision making, adventure instruction, editing instruction to only name a few.
Most importantly I want to foster a small, intimate community around my Instagram. What this means exactly I'm still figuring out and I want all the help I can get with figuring this out. For right now changes are being made, efforts to find equilibrium in this social media mania are at hand.
If you've read this far I hope you will understand that I'm wanting to start a conversation with you, intitally about what you would like to see from my Instagram page but more importantly I want to connect with you on a deeper level than the pressing of a "Follow" or "Unfollow" button.
Wish you and yours the happiest of New Years. 2018 is going to be Great!
All the best,