Instagram: What’s It Really Doing to the Art of Photography?

I love photography. Ok, maybe not as much as all those DSLR-toting self-confessed photographers, but whenever I go somewhere and see something nice, I love to capture it with my camera. Now, my love for photography made me invest in a bit of a clunky bridge camera, which, obviously, I was unable to lug around with me wherever I went. So, in most places I had to make do with my Android phone camera – which was pretty decent too. Until I came across the formerly exclusive wonder, Instagram – and started lusting after it.

Before Instagram came to Android, I often wondered how people clicked all those lovely images with vibrant hues and effects. And I used to envy their skills and cameras. But all that changed when I downloaded the Instagram app, and I saw just how easy it was to click stunning photos with intensity and depth. It may be one of the world’s favorite apps, but now, avid photography enthusiasts are crying foul about how the app’s effects let everyone click great photos, and how it has become hard to separate original talent from images where filters or effects have been added.

True, Instagram users have upped the game for professional photographers by clicking great photos with their ordinary mobile phone cameras, like the way the latter would do with their oh-so-fancy DSLRs. But we have to ask, who is Instagram really hurting? Ordinary folks, we love all these apps – Instagram, Hipstamatic, Camera 360, etc. that let us also capture photographs with beautiful effects. And of course, we get to share them instantly with our friends on social networks too.

While some folks may take it to the extreme by clicking just about anything random and uploading them for the world to see (and of course, comment), at its heart, all these apps were designed with a simple philosophy – to give a chance to all normal people to also tell stories with their pictures.

I may sound a tad philosophical when I say that too much of something is never a good idea, and that everything in moderation is enjoyable. Likewise, with Instagram, maybe if all its users respected the app enough to use it only to add a little extra something to their most memorable pictures, and not “Instagram” just about anything, I think it’s safe to say there might not be as many haters up in arms against the app.

Basically, I think it’s just the sheer frustration of seeing so many artsy photos up on our Facebook newsfeed every time we log in, because every second friend of ours seems to think he/she has become pro, all thanks to Instagram and other similar apps. On a lighter note, perhaps we’d prefer Facebook’s customization feature to ignore all such future updates so we don’t dislike the app so much.

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