NB: No, I don’t consider myself a “photographer”. I’m about as qualified to call myself a photographer for using Instagram as changing the oil makes me qualified to call myself a mechanic.

All photos are taken by me using a Samsung Galaxy S2 and run through various Instagram filters, unless otherwise noted

So the last few months I’ve been using Instagram, a basic image filter mobile app which is meant to replicate lomography/instant photographs via digital filters/basic settings and allows the user to upload them to Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram’s own site.

I’ve used other apps since switching to Android as well, but haven’t really done much with them. Either because they’re not as intuitive or I’m just being lazy (most likely the latter), I might do a camera apps review at some point I suppose. This blog isn’t going to write itself!

There’s not a lot I can really complain about. The “being owned by Facebook” is an issue -especially because Facebook fails pretty spectacularly in terms of privacy, but hopefully Zuckerberg keeps his greasy mitts off of it. Other than that it does what it says on the box. Sure it’s a bit limited but isn’t that the point? If I wanted to go completely nuts with my photos, I’d either run them through photoshop or use something like Pixlr-o-matic which has a fuckton more settings (and its own drawbacks).

Which brings me to what I’ve come to like about Instagram: It is limiting. If you actually give half a shit about taking a good/interesting photo, It requires you to think a bit about shot composition because of the smaller aspect ratio, whether to use filters and if so, what. etc. It’s all fairly basic stuff, sure but it’s that tiny tiny challenge of actually composing an interesting shot which makes Instagram (at least for me) quite fun to use (plus it’s a no-bullshit image uploader, which is nice). A small added bonus is that (at least on the Android app. Unsure for iPhone), when Instagram takes an image, it leaves the original photo in your normal camera folder as well. Presumably because that’s how Instagram wires itself up to the camera app, but I like to think it’s just being considerate. You can also choose pictures from your gallery to show some filter/blur love action if you so desire.

Looking back at these photos now, actually. Kinda amusing to see what worked and what didn’t…

While I don’t think I’ll use it for Keep Australia Colourful or anything anytime soon for a number of reasons, it’s great as a platform to goof off and experiment with, and I sup[pose it’s a good refresher for shot framing and that sort of thing as well.. Also? probably as close to film/lomography as I’m going to get (though just quietly, the modernised polaroid cameras I’ve seen kicking around certainly do look tempting).

 

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