Does Instagram really help Artists?

You wake up in the morning, it's 9:00am, the sun is shining and the birds are chirping in the background, it's a beautiful day, wherever it is that you live. After washing your face and going to the loo, you deactivate plane mode on your phone and first thing you do is logging into Instagram. Two new followers, 2 comments and 3 likes. You take a look and one of the followers is one of these traveler photography pages with shots of the Tour Eiffel and the Pisa Tower. The second follower is some random cryptocurrency page with posts about investing on the digital market and the best ways to do it. You have a look at the comments, and as you're probably guessing by now, both are are copy-pastes from your 2 new followers that have absolutely nothing to do with your street art painting on your post. Two of the 3 likes are from your good friend back home who always loves your shit and the third one is from your mum. Does Instagram really help artists?


I opened my Instagram account  in 2018, quite late knowing it's been around since around 2012. At first I thought, this seems like the perfect tool for me, lots of Artists or people creating things trying  to share and connect with other ones doing similar things!


So I went ahead and started posting my drawings, paintings, sculptures and any creations I was coming up with. Adding hashtags to increase my exposure, while at the same time discovering some pretty cool artists while exploring myself. At first you only have a couple of posts so your gallery looks quite "poor", but as time goes by, and you begin to get the hang of it, your gallery starts looking more filled and way cooler! You might actually get quite proud looking at it, all small and well organized, like a tiny website that's easy to manage! It actually requires quite a chunk of your time to keep posting cool content in a cool way.


Since the beginning I was getting quite a response, I would get tons of "likes" for my posts, a lot of them from pretty cool Artists, which was pretty rewarding. Though on the other hand, many random people would start following me. People I would go into their profiles and not really understand why they would want to follow me, as their accounts where very far from anything I do. Their accounts were actually far from even looking real, like some page where they post different hotties, to mention another kind.


Overtime this started to annoy me a little more than at the beginning. I would keep getting many "likes" from cool Artists, not much of a "following" response. Sometimes Artists would "like" a Post and then go into my account, "like" a few posts, but not follow. Or even worse, a common pattern was to get a "like" on a recently hash tagged post, then get a few "likes" on my content, then get a "follow", and 5 minutes later realize they are not following anymore. They probably where trying me to follow them.


This was not my only experience, I did get found by genuine followers as well, and received some nice feedback for my content. But once I reached this point, of starting to think "is this a real follower?" "Are these all fake ones?", I thought to myself, "is this platform, overall, helping me out or just distracting me into wasting my time?"


You can guess what I did next. Closing my account, I closed it permanently, yes. There are 2 options to close your Instagram account, the first one allows you to close it and open it back again anytime you're homesick in the future, and the second one is as permanent as getting a Tattoo in your forehead. I went for the second one.


To be honest, if you've been using Instagram for a while, it's pretty similar to saying you've been smoking cigarettes for a while. You can quit, but it's not that easy. You go through a little bit of a withdrawal after you close it. And you think, or at least I thought, as my account was solely filled with my creative content, "How am I going to show my stuff to people now?" Because one thing was the online interaction with other users, but another thing was the offline interaction with non virtual users. And this second thing was actually the realest thing about having an account. Meeting people like you do in real life, and giving them the option of staying updated about your creative journey.


With some time and distance, I realized this was the only thing that actually should have mattered about using Instagram. But now, it's been a few months since I closed it, and I'm getting more in peace with my decision. I use this website as an Online Portfolio that people who actually care can visit anytime without having to be on Instagram. And if I want to edit or upload any content, I sit down and do it on my laptop, instead of doing it on a smartphone.


Concluding my analysis, at the end of the day maybe Instagram and being at the last wave of smartphone technology is just not for everyone, even though it can be a great tool to others.  I am pretty happy using my smartphone for whats app communication, using google maps and having a handy google browser on my pocket, but I might not be cut out to be part of this huge social media experiments! Although, if I ever gave Instagram another shot, I would just focus on looking at it from a different perspective.



does instagram help artists? hashtag instagramers art on instagram
does instagram help artists? hashtag instagramers art on instagram

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