My 2018 top nine
It’s fast coming up to the end of the year and it’s that usual time when everyone wants to see whats performed well across the year, in particular the top nine photos on their Instagram.
Before anyone comments, this whole process is a little redundant now as you can get analytics within Instagram to show you top engagements, likes, photos etc so these top nine are no surprise to me.
Those who don’t follow my channel might see several which look the same or very similar. You aren’t wrong they are or just the portrait/landscape orientations. Why is there multiples of these? Simply because these have been use to promote such activites such as Kozu Books, Home of Millican, ThryveWorld, Discover Cymru calendar, VisitWales, Landscape Photography Magazine and other brands where I have worked with them this year.
Now 11.8k likes isn’t much but I’m happy considering my channel is only some eight months old when I came back to Instagram in March.
I have some what of a love-hate relationship with Social Media like most. I use it to promote my photography, work, reviews, collaborations and ultimately is a driver for some income. I hate it because it can make you feel like shit at times as you endlessly scroll through the same photo or fake story and just these “perfect personas” which come with the social media lifestyle.
Why the Top nine doesn’t matter.
At the end of the day I was shooting for myself, I wanted to visit the Brecon Beacons and spend most of my weekends in Wales this year. The brands didn’t have a driving force and tell me to go here.
The likes aren’t a sign that my photos are any good either. Truth be told some are poor in some peoples eyes but this doesn’t matter because it’s their opinion at the end of the day.
More obvious all the top performing photos will be/most likely your most recent photos shared. It should be obvious as to why but as your account grows and you have more following and engagement your more recent photos will clearly out perform your last and so on.
This is why Social media is a bad, it encourages us to always be the best of the best. Always trying to out do the last and perform others which in all puts your mental wellbeing in to a downward spiral as you either can’t perform as high, can’t post as much or the post didn’t perform as well as hoped.
So take it all with a pinch of salt and remember it was for you not for the hundreds out there hoping for you to follow and comment on there posts too.
Don’t be disheartened by a post under performing it’s not a sign its a bad photo and to counter that just because a photo has 10,000+ likes on Instagram for example doesn’t mean its a good or even truthful.
More recently the increase of so called “adventurers” have been posting there hardy stories on photos to Instagram explaining how difficult or easy it was to get here.
Many will remember the recent Icelandic waterfall post where the person says he travelled miles and climbed all these mountains to get here. The waterfall is in-fact by a road side and countless tourists flood to this very easy to find waterfall for the very same photo.
On the counter making actually very dangerous routes seem easier than they are - I’ve seen several claiming the Crib Goch scramble to be “a walk in the park” when it is quiet the opposite and you do need to know what you’re doing. It’s not for the lighthearted or first scramble. It’s a knife edge and has claimed the lives of professionals and amateurs over the years.
As a whole this social media is what you take it be and is a minefield of issues which no one really in all honesty can say they know how to work them to the full potential when it’s forever changing and evolving.
Looking to the future
Less of the negatives and looking to the future. What’s in store for me in 2019?
The obvious continued working with MyOutdoors, Snugpak and Vanguard Photo UK.
Less reviews and more stories and teachings as well as talks and shows as I work with Vanguard and Snugpak.
Workshops and as above teaching - Whether this be through talks or shows to 1-2-1 workshops in mountainous regions.
More trips, more collaborations, more meet-ups. Just more of what you’ve seen this year - It’s been a lot of fun this year and I want to do more of it.
Unlikely to be another book but some other exciting work is lined up which I will be annoucing in the New Year but for now I can’t say anything further under my contract with the brand.
More features in magazines and working with press - Less competitions or no more entries to comps.
This year for sure many will have seen myself backing out of the Wex and FSPrintMondays weekly comps and I’m glad I have, my self esteem has been far better and less stress to enter or worry about these Monday games, but what about the bigger comps?
I will say goodbye to these too. In my opinion the market is flooded with to many POTY or Monthly bests now, it’s nice to win one here and there and get the money but do they mean as much as they did many years ago?