Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Thoughts on Instagram (and a Carrot Cake)

Unless you haven't kept up with the news lately, you probably know that Facebook recently bought Instagram for $1 Billion, making the photo sharing and filtering program worth more than The New York Times. Instagram makes seemingly ordinary pictures vibrantly stand out. Basically, when you run one of your pictures through an Instagram filter, it's hard not to make it look good.

Take the Carrot Cake I made for Easter, for example:

It looks pretty good, right? This Healthy and Light Carrot Cake from Southern Living was actually quite tasty. However, the icing job I did on the cake was shoddy and some of the carrots turned weirdly green in the oven, making the cake look like it should be featured on Cake Wrecks. Okay, so it didn't look that bad, but Instagram certainly helped downplay those issues compared to the hi-res pictures I snapped on my Nikon.

While I certainly enjoy browsing through my friends' pics and sharing my own filtered pics on Instagram, I definitely see them through rosy colored glasses,  making me appreciate unfiltered pictures even more. I'm interested to see how Instagram will become connected through Facebook and how people will use it. I sincerely hope that people won't start filtering their regular pictures like crazy. Instagram pictures should be reserved for special glimpses into your world.

 Do you use Instagram? What are your thoughts on filtered pictures?


DENISE. said...

Oh this is so funny! I just did a post on my photo/work blog about Instagram -- I think I have (gulp) a different viewpoint so I love hearing what everyone thinks. I hate it when people put links to their own blogs in comments but I'll make an exception in this case so we can laugh & chat about it :) PS I absolutely love how much you bake and how fun, experimental and celebratory you about about it. And PPS I'm sorry if my drawings are so lame!!!

Allison said...

Haha! I need a disclaimer that my thoughts are coming from a complete amateur when it comes to photography. Denise, you are such an amazing professional who always has the most stunning photographs. Actually, I think we come from the same school of thought. I should clarify that a bad picture is still a bad picture, but sometimes I think the subject looks better once it's filtered, because it blurs out flaws (like my green carrots) or makes colors more vibrant. The quality of the photograph can still be lame.

Oh, and if you want to talk about bad pictures, let's chat my Draw Something pics. They are the worst! :)

Anne @ The City Sage said...

I was just talking about Instagram yesterday with a colleague at One King's Lane, and here's another reason to love it (never mind the filters): It forces us to stop, pause in our day, frame up a little moment, appreciate it, and think about how we're going to share it with our followers (be they just a small group of friends or a larger network). There's an element of mindfulness to it, sure a mindfulness that is posed and somewhat artificial, but given that my day is otherwise 'go go go' all the time, I'll take any form of 'stop and smell the roses' that I can get!

DENISE. said...

That's beautiful! I love it. It's so true :)

Kelli Long said...

I love the discussion! And I second Denise's comment about your baking - I always know when you bring something to the party, its always the prettiest thing on the table!

Allison said...

Green Carrot Mystery - SOLVED : From my mom, "Actually there is a scientific reason that can explain the phenomenon and it has to do with the baking soda. There are two ways it can happen. Either the recipe calls for too much baking soda OR the baking soda was not mixed well enough with the flour before adding it to the cake batter. Both of these create an atmosphere that is too alkaline. My guess you were in a hurry and didn't mix the flour, soda, salt, and spices together first. I hope this helps solve the mystery. I guess the Food Science class I took might be paying off a little."