Everybody and their mothers are talking about Instagram. Whether it’s the dreaded algorithm, the mass loss of followers, rants about people buying followers/comments, it seems like it’s all we talk about these days.
How come Instagram has become such a huge part of our lives? How did we let this little platform become our everything? Some creatives don’t even own a blog or website anymore and just work off of Instagram — a platform none of us own.
A few days ago, I read a post by Petite Eliee about how much she was enjoying life in regards to social media, and it got me thinking of my own behaviour towards the platforms I’m involved with, especially Instagram — how has the platform shaped my behaviour?
Raise your hand if you ever took a photo more than a dozen times for the gram. Or how many photos of your vacay didn’t get to your feed because they weren’t Insta-worthy. I can’t tell how many times I wore uncomfortable outfits to places or events just because I knew they’d look rad on my Instagram feed!
Me. Someone who claims is thoughtful, even philosophical, getting shaped by a stupid algorithm, by silly social media.
How come we’ve become so obsessed with it that we don’t share our actual, happy, unedited moments anymore? How come you were in a dreamy destination, but you don’t upload a picture that clearly depicts your happiness at being there because you’re not dressed head to toe in sparkling dresses and high heels? (Go trekking through the woods in those, I dare you).
Don’t get me wrong: I love dressing up! I love thinking and producing my shootings, and I definitely have an eye for “perfection” (whatever that little devil is) and look for the right angle for every photo. And I certainly enjoy wearing more than just sports sneakers to my vacays.
But I won’t lie to you: sometimes, I wish I’d brought comfier shoes to my trips. I wish I had ditched the skirts for a great pair of pants, and the silk blouses for a cotton tee. I wish I dared to share those not so candid shots with you instead of just letting them sit and gather dust in my camera memory, never to see the light again.
I wore jeans, a cap and sneakers to explore Dover, and I’m so fucking glad I did, because there was no way I would have climbed up the hill in a pair of heels, or creeper shoes even. I’m glad I wore those, and yes, I know it’s touristy and so not Insta-worthy, but I every intention of uploading them anyway. Because that is my life. It’s real. And I want to share that moment with you, even if it isn’t a candid photo of me in my fanciest of clothing.
Truthfully, let’s think about it, together:
Think of your best vacations, or the best meet up with friends. Take a look at those photos and tell me: weren’t you genuinely happy there? Even if it’s one of those crappy photos taken at night with flash on, or one where you’re wearing plain black leggings and a grey melanged tee without any prints on it and your trusted sporty sneakers.
Now take a look at the photos you produce for Instagram, for your blog. Can you think of anything wow-groundbreaking happening? Unless it’s your engagement or “he proposed!” photos, or it’s candid shots of your trip, then I bet it’s getting tougher and tougher to think of what was going on behind the photo, isn’t it?
For instance, I took these photos a few weeks ago. I can’t remember sh*t about that day. Seriously, nothing notable probably happened — otherwise I’d remember it. I shot them for the sake of inspiring you with the outfit. I shot them in hopes of looking back and checking out my style back in 2018. And while these aren’t just for the Gram, there is nothing special going on behind these photos. I didn’t exactly go anywhere in this outfit. There’s no funny or special story behind it.
Again: this is not to say it’s inherently a bad thing to take photos for the Gram or your blog.
It’s mainly me criticizing why the rest of the pictures never make it to our online platforms. Why we’re so obsessed with the perfect picture to the point we shape our travels and meetings with people to meet the “blogger criteria”. I even bet some couples have broken up over the infamous “ootd photoshoot” — girls even look forward to having boyfriends with the main interest to turn them into their photographers! (whaaat?).
Where do you stan in this conversation? How much do you do for the sake of the Gram?
Hat from H&M
Black heart shaped chocker from Todo Moda
Black broderie crop top from Primark
Pleated skirt from Zara
Black sandals from Dafiti