THE RISE OF THE PLAT­FORMS

So­cial me­dia has made in­stant grat­i­fi­ca­tion an ev­ery­day oc­cur­rence for users, and that has ex­tended to the world of photography. We take a look at how so­cial me­dia is evolv­ing to cre­ate great plat­forms for pho­tog­ra­phers to uti­lize to get their work no­tice

New Zealand D-Photo - - CONTENTS -

We take a look at how so­cial me­dia is evolv­ing to cre­ate great plat­forms pho­tog­ra­phers can uti­lize to get their work no­ticed

Once upon a time, to share a pho­to­graph you had cre­ated with friends and fam­ily, let alone the gen­eral pub­lic, you would have to snail-mail a phys­i­cal copy in an en­ve­lope, and the re­cip­i­ent might not re­ceive it for up to a week. Nowa­days, you can take a photo on your cam­era or phone, ap­ply a fil­ter, or care­fully post-process your shot, then in­stantly up­load it to your choice of so­cial me­dia for ev­ery­one to see.

The plat­forms avail­able for pho­tog­ra­phers to show­case their cre­ations are seem­ingly end­less, and they all func­tion in slightly dif­fer­ent ways, but, at the end of the day, they present a way of get­ting your style of photography no­ticed by not just your friends and fam­ily — un­less your pri­vacy set­tings are set up like Fort Knox — but also by the wider world. Who knows what op­por­tu­ni­ties could come your way from peo­ple who’ve seen your work and loved it.

Face­book

There are a num­ber of ways in which you can uti­lize Face­book to share your im­ages: on your per­sonal page, on a busi­ness page that you cre­ate, or even in a group. If you’re af­ter a plat­form on which to share your work with your friends and fam­ily, post­ing to your per­sonal page would be the way to go, as you can cus­tom­ize your pri­vacy set­tings to en­sure that only peo­ple you’re friends with

on Face­book will see any­thing you post.

If you’re keen to get your name out there a bit more, set up a busi­ness page, as then any­one on Face­book can see your im­ages, like them, and share them, and you’ll be able to grow a fan base that ac­tively fol­lows your pho­to­graphic jour­ney. There are also plenty of Face­book groups to join. Be­gin­ner photography groups let you ask ques­tions and get ad­vice, cri­tique groups al­low you to up­load your im­ages and ask for feed­back, while gen­eral groups are for peo­ple with a pas­sion for photography who want to net­work and share what they’re work­ing on.

If th­ese ideas sound like a bit of you, just do a bit of Face­book search­ing un­til you find the group, or groups, that suit you.

In­sta­gram

The home of pho­to­graphs of your din­ner and self­ies — but it’s much more than that! If you’re seek­ing a fun way to in­crease your fan base, then In­sta­gram is a great plat­form to ex­plore. It in­volves up­load­ing edited/ fil­tered im­ages — or maybe #nofil­ter pho­tos if you’d pre­fer — and shar­ing them with your fol­low­ers. If you want a quick way to in­crease your fan base, make sure you make use of hash­tags, which are an easy way for peo­ple to search for your pho­to­graphs. Hash­tags for New Zealand na­ture pho­tog­ra­phers could be some­thing as sim­ple as #na­ture or #nz­na­ture. Ex­per­i­ment with your hash­tags and you’ll see your fan base grow steadily. You can use it in which­ever man­ner you feel you’d like to show­case your work, whether you want to up­load be­hind-the-scenes shots from your lat­est shoot, or use it as a jour­nal of things you’ve been pho­tograph­ing. Maybe you want to get feed­back on your lat­est body of work, or ideas you’ve had. If you’ve got a web­site you want peo­ple to visit, make sure you in­clude it in your bio.

Pin­ter­est

Pin­ter­est is a plat­form that some pho­tog­ra­phers may find slightly scary, as it’s one that en­cour­ages users to ‘pin’ other peo­ple’s work to their own Pin­ter­est boards. If you de­cide to use Pin­ter­est as a so­cial me­dia out­let for your work, and you don’t like the idea of your im­ages go­ing far and wide with­out recog­ni­tion, make sure you pop a wa­ter­mark on your pho­tos so view­ers will al­ways know where they came from. Ba­si­cally, with Pin­ter­est, you can cre­ate as many boards as you like — so per­haps a board per body of work — and then you up­load your fin­ished im­ages to th­ese boards, en­cour­ag­ing the Pin­ter­est com­mu­nity of 110 mil­lion plus (2016 stats) to view, in­ter­act, and share them with their fol­low­ers. You can build a fol­low­ing of pho­tog­ra­phers and photography lovers, and you can also cre­ate a list of peo­ple you want to fol­low, and in­ter­act with their im­ages. You can also link all your im­ages back to your web­site, so you can gen­er­ate a de­cent amount of traf­fic to your site, and per­haps even spark busi­ness through this.

500px

If you hope to get your im­ages no­ticed, while also lin­ing up the po­ten­tial to make a bit of cash from your work, 500px may be your plat­form of choice. Within 500px, there is a Mar­ket­place sec­tion on which all the up­loaded im­ages will be stored, and users can search for the type of im­ages they like, and from there can de­cide whether to pur­chase them. Within 500px you also have a pro­file page on which you can up­load a bit of in­for­ma­tion about your­self, house all of your up­loaded im­ages, and even di­rect peo­ple to your web­site. To use 500px, you first de­cide whether you want a free ac­count or a paid mem­ber­ship. De­pend­ing on your needs, you may only re­quire a free ac­count, which al­lows you to up­load 20 im­ages per week, with the abil­ity to li­cense them through the Mar­ket­place. The other memberships of­fer you a range of in­ter­est­ing fea­tures — check them out be­fore you make your de­ci­sion.

Flickr

Flickr’s home page tells you straight­away that it is home to 13 bil­lion pho­tos and two mil­lion groups. If you want to in­te­grate your work into the photography com­mu­nity, Flickr is def­i­nitely a fight­ing op­tion to con­sider. It has two main fo­cuses: as a plat­form that en­ables you to share your pho­to­graphs with your cho­sen au­di­ence, whether that’s pub­licly or pri­vately, and to pro­vide a new way to or­ga­nize your cre­ated con­tent. You can eas­ily search through all the con­tent on Flickr — un­less it is pri­vate — for spe­cific peo­ple or pho­to­graphs. When you find an image you like, you can see who shot it and fol­low them to en­sure you see more of their pho­to­graphs. There’s usu­ally cam­era in­for­ma­tion on what set­tings were used when cre­at­ing the image, and you can com­ment and pro­vide feed­back on the image. It’s a great in­ter­ac­tive and en­gag­ing photo com­mu­nity.

YouTube

The photography world is no longer limited to still im­ages; there’s also the ev­er­ex­pand­ing world of video! One of the largest plat­forms on which to get your video con­tent seen is YouTube. Once your video is filmed and pro­cessed — and if you want more than your friends and fam­ily to wit­ness it — it’s time to up­load it to YouTube and share it far and wide. The great thing about YouTube clips is that they can be em­bed­ded into your web­site, or shared on your Face­book page — as well as on a raft of other so­cial me­dia chan­nels, such as Twit­ter, Pin­ter­est, and Tum­blr — and you can even email them to your fam­ily and friends, or your sub­scriber list if you have a good fol­low­ing.

We’ve only touched on a few forms of so­cial me­dia that will help you to get your im­ages seen around the world, or even by just your friends and fam­ily, so it’s well worth ex­plor­ing all the other web­sites and apps out there un­til you find some­thing that aligns per­fectly with your needs. So­cial me­dia is an ev­ere­volv­ing place, so if you’ve been weigh­ing up the op­tions, and whether it’s worth be­ing in­volved or not, we’d rec­om­mend you jump in now so you don’t get left too far be­hind.

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