Flickr vs Instagram vs Wordpress.

Flickr’s galleries have long been one of the tools available to our community for visual storytelling, though they have gotten dusty over time as the rest of the site progresses. So today, we’re happy to announce that we’ve begun to roll out a fresh Flickr galleries experience, where we help you tell your visual stories…

via All new Flickr galleries — Flickr Blog

Flickr just announced some long overdue updates to their Galleries page. It’s good to see continued investment in the Flickr platform. It also comes at a time when I am working to reduce the number of creative sharing platforms I use, so it’s useful to consider whether Flickr will continue to fill a space for me.

I still find Flickr my place to share the intentional photos, the “work”, that I want to create. It’s not perfect. The 1300 photos in my Flickr stream need to be curated into a more consistent body of work that’s more tightly focused on the subjects I find most interesting. Its likely there is less than 1/3 worth keeping. but that’s a rainy weekend project for the future.

I use Instagram too. There you’ll find snapshots of pets, concerts and friends cropped to 1×1 and filtered just so. I know many photographers have found a home there but something about the smaller, mobile experience doesn’t feel right to me. I’m not sure I could present a work or a cohesive collection there. My Instagram also needs the cobwebs of bad photos deleted away, a task that IG’s tools make difficult.

Ideally I’m going to create a new portfolio site here on WordPress to be my “best of” portfolio site. Pushing myself to edit from 100 shots to 10 good photos and then down to 1 great (to me) photo won’t be easy. Still it is where I need to go to become a better photographer.

Instagram would be for quick work in progress or shares in the moment. Flickr becomes a place to share a larger collection of good solid work. My WordPress portfolio will, someday soon, be where I can show the things I really feel good about.

Fewer.

About as long as I have been online, I’ve followed the idea of posting to as many places as possible. Through this blog, predecessors and variants, Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, Instagram, ad nauseum. I kept accounts alive for no other reason than whatever audience I was looking for might be on the next site over.

It made sense. I wanted anyone to see what I’d done then I should spread it as far and wide as I could. Right? Why make people only come to one location when I could “syndicate” myself across the interwebs? Isn’t more better?

No.

I have come to the realization that I’m posting my writing or my photography because I want to. I’m not doing it so you’ll like it.

Social media gives us an endorphin rush every time we see that like, follow or share notification. Unless you’re careful soon everything optimizes for that hit. You stop writing, shooting and editing what you care about. It becomes too easy to design around a vague audience of friends who, while waiting for their bus or pretending to listen in a meeting, are scrolling through feeds simply to pass the time.

I need to edit my online life. I need to purge the backlog of photos and posts that exist without saying anything at all. I need fewer.

That will mean eliminating some accounts. I’ll be keeping fewer online identities and putting fewer apps on my phone. Then I’m going to refocus the content to mean something to me, to reflect a level effort that would make it worth sharing in the first place.

I’ll still be here. If you’ve found me here then don’t worry. I won’t be leaving. I hope that by eliminating the distraction of all those other places, this one might actually become something worth coming back for.