Quitting Social Media as an Artist?
Quitting social media as an artist, as a content creator, maybe even as a business. Is this a good idea? Is it even realistic in 2021 if you’re trying to build an audience or a platform where you can share your art; your work?
I’ve been thinking about this for a while. Mostly, I’ve been thinking about the amount of time I will, by default sit down in front of my computer with a cup of coffee, or tea, water, whatever, and just start scrolling. Pointlessly. I’m not even really looking for anything specific, just scrolling.
Source of Inspiration?
I have made it a point to follow artists on Instagram, or pages on Facebook with hopes that I’ll see work that inspires me; that makes me want to create my own inspired work.
But to be honest, although I see plenty of work that I do enjoy, that’s about where it ends. I don’t necessarily come away inspired with ideas for new projects. It doesn’t really get my creative creative juices flowing.
On the other hand, if I look through a photography book of the photographers I really admire, mostly dead guys and gals; the masters of the mid-20th century photography, I tend to become much more inspired. I can hold their work in my hands; look at the printed photos; turn the pages… it’s a more enjoyable way of consuming inspiring work, rather than vertically scrolling down a backlit screen.
It’s a nice idea. And actually Facebook does help me see more of what my family is doing. But I’m starting to think that the addictive side of the apps outweigh the connections.
Maybe if I wasn’t seeing friends and family on social media, I might tend to pickup up the phone and make a call a little more often. Wouldn’t that be nice to actually have direct interaction with someone, rather than just liking their posts or replying to comments. Wow, imagine how much that could add to the quality of life!
The past couple of years have been kind of weird. I live alone. I work from home. I’m a freelancer and luckily the pandemic didn’t really affect my business. I do content creation, web development and photography for clients that I interact with digitally. So not much changed.
But during this time I was seeing people even less that normal. There were times when I would feel pretty isolated. Yeah, it got pretty lonely. Social media really became my way of connecting with the other humans. As a result, I have become far too used to just sitting down and scrolling. That’s not good.
I waste way too much time on this stuff.
But is Quitting Social Media Practical?
Can it be done? Is it practical? What about for artists who are trying to get their work seen? The interesting thing is I’ve been seeing more videos from artists who have unplugged from social media, with the exception of YouTube.
What they describe is a feeling of freedom. They talk about how they have much more time to devote to their art; their creativity. They’re generally happier and more productive. I think it’s probably different for each of us, how disconnecting from social media would affect us. But it’s interesting to see how it’s being described by so many.
Your Website, Your Platform
As a photographer, I’ve always pushed the concept that if you really seriously cared about your photography, you need to have your own website. A place where you can display your work, your art the way you want to. A place where your photos can stand out; not surrounded by everyone else’s posts and advertising flashing at you.
Maybe if we spent less time on social networks it would free up time (and brain space) to be more creative and put more effort into sharing more work and thoughts on our own sites. Our own platforms.
So, would people come to your site? They’ll have to if they want to see your work. Maybe that would inspire us to create more powerful work that would compel people to come to you, to your site to see your work. Maybe the level of our work would improve. Not just photos for a Facebook post, but maybe a print, or a photo book that someone would want to buy.
So Am I Quitting Social Media?
Not yet. Part of my job is creating content for client’s social media pages. So I would at least need to keep my accounts open to have the access. But I will be making a conscious effort to spend far less personal time on the platforms. It will be interesting to see if I experience more creativity. Maybe connect with people, more in real life. What a concept.
How About You?
What do you think about all this. How much time do you spend on social platforms? Too much, or do you have a pretty good handle on it. Let me know, I’d be interested in hearing your thoughts on this.
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