The last hurrah of old style photography

Started 1 week ago | Discussions thread
Tungsten Nordstein
Tungsten Nordstein Senior Member • Posts: 1,807
Re: old just hanging in

Park Avenue Airwolf wrote:

Tungsten Nordstein wrote:

Old Ricoh User wrote:

Ants Mani wrote:

Old Ricoh User wrote:

Ants Mani wrote:

The old format of printing and books has pretty much waned has led the smartphone photographers to find new ways of communicating and creating an audience for their work.

There is a niche market for an accessible non computational cameraphone to straddle both paths unfortunately it doesn’t make commercial sense so the prospects of such a device are low in the immediate future. So we are left with the clumsy two device format....... through Zeiss is on the right path but the cost is prohibitive to most shooters.

The social media audience has all the allure and reality of a tv show laugh track.

Maybe so but that is the audience

They're not a real audience, they have a 15 second attention span.
They're not patrons because they only view for free.

They're definitely not collectors, it's that free thing again.

They're overwhelmed by so many photos they have no idea what's good.

They're influenced and manipulated by "likes"

I'm not sure I understand the 'only view for free' thing. I noticed it with @Park Avenue Airwolf in the other ('no more Ricoh') thread when he said he got rid of his Instagram account because the 4 or 5k followers were not buying (or becoming more deeply engaged with the work).

'the mentality of those on that service is that everything is free, and nobody should be paid for their art'

I do not think people looking on Instagram (etc) can be criticised for wanting to look for free or for not being patrons. If a photographer has a gallery show, I would guess that 95% of visitors are not going to be buyers either. They are looking for free and the majority are not there to buy.

I would also guess that photographers are less likely to sell through Instragram or another social media service like Etsy than they are to people who view the prints in person or through a specialised gallery (real or online). I'm not sure why anyone would hope to get sales through Instagram and the like. I just don't think it's really part of the equation.

My point is a bit more nuanced and not nearly as sour grapes as you may have inferred. IG makes such a phenomena extraordinarily normalized at mass scale, and desensitizes people to the quality of works, and the efforts of art. I don't begrudge nobody buying my work because i never sold it on IG, but rather the medium is a) not even big enough to render the details of my medium format photography, b) requires so much posting with extremely little benefit in return, and c) leaves an impression across the board that there is just another image around the corner, without much in return. I don't blame the followers, I am just saying I think the platform is not an ideal place for artists after a certain point or before a certain point. Hope that helps. And just one person's view, I realize.


Sorry, I didn't mean to paint you into a corner with my reference to your post and I did add the point about the engagement factor that you also mentioned - which is a valid point. You do appear to have a positive outlook.

If as Old Ricoh user says that he used to sell work on Instagram, then, yes – it has changed since they sold it to facebook. Which I guess we all know. As you say the algorithms that promote certain posts have undermined it for the Instagram account holder.

Simply, Instagram is not the place to show photos and in my post I just wanted to question whether it was to blame when it comes to the perceived state of photography as has been discussed. I think the problems with modern photography are more complex, or just don't exist at all. But a lot of issues I read seem to be about finding audiences. I don't know the answer to that. Probably needs a lot of effort and a lot of leg-work, like it always did. Media sharing sites seem to be better than a blog (as there is an audience of some kind or other), but maybe it's not a complete substitute.

Long and short of it – there are better platforms for showing work than Instagram.

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'I don't take photographs, I delete them.'
Tungsten Nordstein, 2909

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