Size matters at Latitude
Back from another music festival, Latitude. I was again on big-camera duties, taking photos of bands and general festival festivities. In the press tent, lens envy was rife as photographers brandished lenses the size of their arms (and costing one plus a leg) and strained under the burden of ruck-sacks full of expensive kit. Again the contrast between iphoneography and big camera photography got me thinking.
I was able to file my photos a few hours after taking them via a laptop. Great! But with Instagram we “file our photos” minutes after taking them. And whereas many of the big camera photos will be sitting on a picture editor’s desk waiting to be selected and then only possibly bought by magazines, iphone photos are being seen by thousands of people instantly. And while the festival posted photos up on a flickr page of the festival as it happened, how many festival goers logged onto flickr to check them? Whereas with a tag and tap, Instagramers were seeing images from all over the festival.
And whereas the photos posted on the official sites had stunningly crisp resolution (thanks to thousands of pounds worth of camera kit), the pictures tagged on Instagram perhaps gave more of an authentic impression of the festival and some of the more creatively edited ones were equally stunning.
So the Instagram photos were reaching more eyeballs more quickly and engaging festival goers better than the big camera photos. And hats off to Latitude for running an official festival Instagram account and posting up photos. But half the battle with photography is access. And the festival gave the professional photographers access to the photo pits but not to their humble instagramer. So despite being perhaps a more powerful PR tool than big cameras, the instagramer was treated as a second-rate photographer.
Instagramers left outside the tent