Image via WIREDInsider
Instagram gets a lot of hate. Sure, it’s the domain of slim-waisted 20-somethings with good taste in music and bad taste in beer. Sure, it’s been perceived as elitist. But hell, I use it, and I find myself using it even more than the native iPhone photo app, or my DSLR. And here’s why.
No Zoom. At first you’d think no zoom is a detraction. It’s not. Zooming with the iPhone means a shaky, grainy shot. By not having a zoom, Instagram ensures that your photos stay somewhat clear. Further, it requires you to “zoom with your feet”—a key precept of any decent shooter—and get close to the action.
It’s Square. Again, another plus that at first seems like a minus. The square shape of Instagram’s viewfinder means I’ve got to have tight, creative, considerate framing. It also makes it easier to crop out things I don’t want, and to show off the heart of the photo.
Color correct. As any experienced photographer knows, a lot of photography happens after clicking the shutter, in post-production. Instagram’s filters aren’t just kitschy—they actually help quickly color correct photos. For example, “Amaro” is good for brightening a dark shot, and “Hudson” can be used to up the contrast.
It all goes to one place. After shooting with my regular camera, I have the daunting task of hosting them someplace. Not that it’s a big deal, but Instagram’s feed and inherent share-y-ness means I can just direct people to one place to showcase my work.