Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Year 5 Day 15 - Sharing Photos - The How and Why

This last year has been an interesting one. Photography, friends, flickr, locations, etc.

Photography used to be more about making images, friends, and getting something new and fresh every day and sharing them as soon as possible and being very open. Some of that changed this year for me.

read on for more...

A bit of the change was driven by learning about animals, and flickr and the reach of sharing detailed info on the internet and with people I've never met. When I am out shooting I have learned to try to respect the animals, keep my distance, but still be able to photograph wildlife (and try to get close). Sometimes VERY close but still respecting the wildlife...

CloserYellow Crowned Night Heron

But. Part of the change was driven by personalities too. I am a fairly good judge of character and intent, but I let words get in the way of my instincts. That was a hard lesson to learn. The internet, the benefit of the doubt. Blah blah.

One reason I am taking this 'step back from flickr' this month is to change how I use flickr, how I feel about flickr, and how I mentally tie my daily life to flickr and the image/feedback it provides.

I haven't been on flickr to say hi to my 500 closest friends daily for a while. I realize that some people are. And that's ok. Flickr is many things to many people. I honestly think that is one of the things that makes flickr so successful. A person with a 1ds Mark-3 can upload a cat photo, and so can an iPhone user. And each person in that example can find each other and enjoy the photo the other person took.

Things changed some for me when it became apparent that it is quite common for people to 'game flickr and its members for their own enjoyment'. What do I mean by that? Well, people that pimp their photos, post their photos in your stream, post to 10's of groups, maybe 20 or 30 groups per photo. (people that have 10 photos, 300 comments per and maybe 4,000 contacts in the uber ultra extreme, but too often ppl are more subtle.) Folks that only publish photos and don't browse and consume the photos of their friends. I struggled a little with that. I don't want to JUST post photos and not participate with flickr and my friends and contacts. But I also don't want flickr to be too social, I've been disappointed...

Trying to keep track of all that crap, becomes too much to deal with. What I want to do, what I enjoy is going out and making images.

Great Blue Heron Action Figure (w/ Kung Fu Grip)

In order to try to remain a little disconnected I am going to not be posting timely images, as a regular goal anyway - sometimes I may, but... Flickr is no longer a race to see this or that first. Seasons will come and go, and I will even more so in the future have a huge library of images to select from and to share.

I am hoping to gain some vision and move past sharing a daily 'hey - this is what I saw today, isn't that cool type images/posts. Maybe I am over-thinking this, but, right now flickr is the main place 'I share my art' so to speak. Art is not a cell phone photo of the jerk in front of you at a stop-light...

For me 'My Art' is first of all for me. I have to like it, connect with it, etc.

All Hell Breaks Loose

Flickr was totally not 'art' for me when I joined, but thanks to so many different forces I've grown.

...I've rambled. When I am done blogging almost every day for Sept 2009, I hope my images can speak more for me and my intent than my blog/words do now.



AndrewN said...

Flickr certainly has it's down sides - I stopped posting there for about 6 months due to some of them.

I couldn't stop visiting certain photographers there to see what they were currently doing. I needed the inspiration from seeing other photographers improve over time.

You are one of them. Thanks.

ToadMama said...

I haven't experienced Flickr issues, but I am not as visible as you or don't have as many friends/contacts. I have a limited number of contacts. And those I have chosen to be my contacts are important to me in that I really enjoy looking at their images. I have completely and thoroughly enjoyed your images over the past couple of years. Part of the reason is that you're local. The other part is just that you are darn good. If you ever decide to leave Flickr and/or quit blogging... PLEASE let me follow. (-: