Greg Morris

Designer, Pretend Photographer, Dad

Instagram ruined all your photos

An interesting post in the Totally Recommend newsletter on the degradation of their camera roll:

Ten years ago, my photos weren’t as crisp as they are now, but they did the job of capturing personal stories and connections….these photos are filled with the faces of my friends and family from seemingly unremarkable but unforgettable times together.

Over time, my photos begin to transform. The “stupid but sweet” snapshots start to give way to something different. There is a new focus, an attempt to present an aesthetic, an idea, an editorial “look.”

This is something I have seen in the camera rolls of many of my friends. They no longer capture and post snapshots of their lives; instead, their Instagram feeds resemble those of low-key influencers. Everything is polished and perfect (well, as perfect as they can make it) with image upon image of nothingness.

Smiling faces and silly captures have been replaced with landscapes of places they visited simply to take photos. Perhaps there’s the occasional shot of a person from behind, pretending to watch something, yet no images of the thing itself.

Photos are meant to be memory prompts—captures of moments you want to remember or snapshots of enjoyable times. Those blurry, grainy candid photos you barely managed to grab as you fumbled for your camera are utterly perfect. The moment is spoiled because your phone is in front of your face the whole time, not so much.

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