Instagram, the most popular photo-sharing app for both Android and iOS, has become a must-use tool for artists to build audiences. Despite the app’s wide use among professional photographers, it has inhibited creativity with its limits on the size and dimension of posted pictures. But Instagram’s team recently released updates that should make life easier for serious photographers.
Here are five ways you can utilise new features and call for future improvements.
1. SHOW YOUR WORK IN VIVID DETAIL
Since its launch in 2010, Instagram has relied on pixel resolutions of 640 by 640 for both mobile and desktop interfaces. But now you can post at a width of 1080 pixels, presenting your photos sharply, especially when people view them from the larger screens of computers.
2. THINK (FINALLY!) OUTSIDE THE SQUARE
Square compositions have become synonymous with Instagram—an annoyance to professional photographers. You had to crop, sometimes awkwardly, to fit Instagram’s format or rely on separate apps, such as SquareReady, to alter landscape and portrait shots into squares by using black bars. Instagram’s team, after reporting that roughly 20 percent of photos posted to the app were not shot as squares, decided it was time to let users move beyond the box.
3. SEPARATE YOUR WORK FROM YOUR PLEASURE
You may have complained that having a professional portfolio on Instagram meant you could not use the app the way most people do, to fill your profile with goofy selfies or candid shots of your pets and kids. Now you can operate five different accounts with one login, so you can manage a profile for work and another for personal life.
4. REVISIT THE DECISION TO PREVENT IMAGE THEFT
Is there a consequence to having your shots in crisp detail and intended dimensions on Instagram? The more enthralling your photos, the more likely someone is to save and reuse them. As has been noted on this site, you may wish to protect your work with strategically placed watermarks.
5. THANK INSTAGRAM’S TEAM AND EXPLAIN WHAT NEEDS REMAIN
This is a great time to contact Instagram’s team, to thank them for these updates but remind them of many ways Instagram could make life easier for creative professionals. If you want to maintain page metrics beyond comments and “likes,” then you still have to rely on other apps, such as Iconosquare, to acquire that information. You still cannot post to Instagram from your desktops and laptops. Those devices are where you likely store your photography, so the process of transferring files to your phone is an added step and unnecessary annoyance. Instagram is helping photographers, and photographers are helping Instagram, so it is fair to request further changes that benefit the community.
Make the most of the new features on Instagram. Show sharp pictures in intended layouts. Keep your portfolio focused while you play around on your personal account. The world’s most popular means to share images is becoming a better place for you.
Story first published at Fujifilm Australia's Digital Photography Blog.
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