Advice for Beginners

 

Social media has become a tool for instant gratification and success for photographers. What advice would you give to someone who has just begun their journey?

Answer by: Chirag Wakaskar, Photojournalist

Being active on social media today, particularly Instagram, has almost become mandatory for every photographer. After all, the platform continues to play an important role in the democratisation of photography, and it enables millions of people to connect with one another, instantly. However, it does come with some trade-offs, especially if you are someone just starting out. Seeking validation in numbers (likes) is not just troubling, but perhaps, also inescapable for most people. There is now enough scientific evidence of it being detrimental to one’s mental health. It’s also fairly common knowledge that the platform is geared towards commercial purposes, and a lot of numbers, including likes and followers, are manipulated or bought, to exploit it for monetary gains. Besides, the toxic celebrity culture on Instagram also plays a huge role in taking over much of the social media space, and leaving little for photography.

My advice to anyone who has just started out is to make an effort to connect and engage with fellow photographers personally, share work on the platform, while providing insight into their process (but don’t treat Instagram as your portfolio), and look for genuine engagements, instead of instant gratification via likes.

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