I downloaded the application in early 2012 on my iPhone a little by accident, I have to admit. In fact, at the beginning I didn’t understand everything about it. And then, as I wandered through the application, I discovered the social networking side, including likes, hashtags, and communities.
It was so much fun to have my first exchanges, my first likes, my first followers! The idea that you can be talking with someone on the whole other end of the world and not even know what time it is over there! Just being there on my sofa, discovering photos of unimaginable magnificent places! When you think about it, it’s just magical. A bond gets formed.
So far, I have posted about 750 photos… I left up the ones from the beginning because I like the idea that you can follow my progress if you feel like it! Oh yes, there has been progress! There’s quite a spread!!
Instagram is an incredible source of inspiration! There are so many magnificent accounts that you’ll want to outdo yourself. I could tell you about fifty or so right off the top of my head! I’ll share some names with you in my next articles, and I’ll present some by theme! But here are some to get started:
@metadio for its streetphotography, @la_gomme for its magnificent portraits, but that’s not all, @pixceline for its breathtaking landscapes, @toinou1375 because the photos will take you on fabulous journeys, @tobishinobi for the entirety of its gallery, @superchinois801 for images of Paris and elsewhere through this unique perspective, @dmoraes for the relaxed side of the creative process, @kapstand for its acrobatic feats.
Instagram has opened up my eyes… I’m always looking everywhere around me, trying to find an original angle or something someone has never seen before. Because for me, that’s the goal, after all! THE PHOTO! The photo people will remember because you need to be honest with yourself: on Instagram, photos have a limited lifespan… The two most wonderful compliments for me are when somebody tells me my photo is original and also when someone tells me that the picture is poetic. I love to share my vision of things. I am quite the dreamer and I love to believe that people can tell that about me by looking at my photos.
Until autumn 2013, my photos were all taken with my iPhone 4, and then I bought my Fuji X10. It was perfect for me! It has the quality of images I want and it’s very accessible. Because I’m not at all technical, I tend to proceed by instinct. It isn’t bulky, so I can take it wherever I go. I also bought myself a Wifi SD card, so I can post instantly, just like with the telephone if I want to.
However, from the beginning and still today, I edit my photos using Snapseed. Snapseed for me is the best application for retouching smartphone photos. I had mixed success at the beginning because I relied too much on drama… And then, with practice and following other people’s advice, I now know how to edit photos to my liking. I love when colors are natural and when the editing isn’t too obvious. In general, I correct my photo as needed, then I play with contrast, light, darker tones, warmth, I frame the composition… According to the photo, the combination will vary. It depends on the ambiance I want to create. The editing phase gives you a lot of latitude… Especially to create a particular type of atmosphere or to highlight a particular detail, or to reframe the shot to highlight a specific feature… This application is intuitive, so you need to try it out to improve your technique and get the right edits…to find your stride!!
I also use Touch/Retouch to erase small details I don’t like on the photo and also Skrwt, but I’ll explain that in the next article!
Another facet of Instagram that for me represents an integral part of my path on this network is the community known as @igersfrance ! Igersfrance is the French community that creates links between Instagram users throughout the country and the cities of France. This community coalesces around exchanges, sharing, meetings, and promotion of beautiful photos and planning challenges and competitions. During my first months following this community I discovered instameets!
What is an instameet? It is a meeting of instagram users to take pictures, discuss photography, and exchange tips…
I created @igersmontpellier with the support of @igersfrance in summer 2012. While I was at it, I planned my first instameet. Since I love to meet new people, I was in my element! Meeting people who share the same passion for photography, people of all ages, from all backgrounds, going from the virtual world to the real world with people you know without truly knowing them… In 2015, 3 years later, I have Instagram friends (some of whom I consider real world friends) all over France… Wonderful opportunities to meet great people! All because of a telephone application!
I really love moderating my community….It’s very enriching. Now, there are three of us who proudly moderate the group! (Take a look at my acolytes @i_trema_a and @jbjjrgci)
And I also got involved in igersfrance. I took care of the photo of the day, along with other managers, for a year and a half. I discovered lots of beautiful photos and very beautiful galleries as a result. So don’t hesitate to wander around on the hashtag #igersfrance.
I also managed competitions. I’ve found it very worthwhile. You’ll understand why at the end of the article…
Slowly but surely, I reached 80,000 followers. From the beginning I have enjoyed taking the time to answer all the kind message people leave for me. I love to get feedback on my photos and to interact with people.
And then one morning in January 2015, I was suggested by Instagram… For three weeks, I was highlighted, and then I got to more than 80,000 followers! What a surprise!
Instagram suggests accounts every week, so to be a suggestion, somebody who already had that honor has to put you on the list.
Of course, this opened lots of doors and has given me some incredible opportunities! I was invited to events, to the Cannes festival, brands contact me… There are extraordinary opportunities out there, and I never imagined having experiences like those I was given thanks to Instagram.
I have such fun on Instagram, and I enjoy it as much now as I did at the beginning. For me, that’s the whole point of it all!
For me, above all, Instagram has been a superb adventure for the last three years! You could call it a human adventure with the amazing encounters I have had with people, or a personal adventure given the many things about myself I have learned through my photography, or a professional journey because Instagram has allowed me to discover community management, and I now want to make that my career.
We’re together throughout the month of August, and I’ll try to help you discover my world and my vision of things. If you have questions or comments, please don’t hesitate to leave them for me!
I am Sigrid, alias @ettisi on Instagram! I live in Montpellier, in the South of France… But I’ve often got the travel bug. I have always loved to take pictures, as far back as I can remember. I discovered Instagram in 2012, and it has opened my eyes to a whole new way of looking at the world around me…everyday details, finding the poetry in things that don’t seem to have any, recreating my own world. Instagram lets me express all these things. I get to post photos of what I perceive and what I feel, and sharing them with my followers is especially gratifying! Welcome to my little world!