WE MAKE THE CONNECTIONS NOT THE ALGORITHM
The posts I made in my instagram created a conversation.
With comments and also with private messages.
I have learned a lot about how artists feel about Instagram this week, and in conclusion and on a positive note, is about thinking of posts as seeds we plant.
But let me elaborate a bit.
Ok so, there is a big contradiction in many artists.
On one hand they would like their posts to work and get more followers, and on the other hand many of them loathe social media.
As a curator of a page where I share the work of artists for free,@fandeestampados I get asked to make posts about books, classes, job offers, shop promotions etc etc.
I do it gladly without asking anything in return.
I love when after one of my posts, the artist has a lot of new followers, it gives me the feeling that talented artists with few followers are better known.
I do the same with big names, I treat all the same.
I look for interaction and community, not just numbers.
On the other hand when it comes to my design studio account @gloriasurfacepatterndesign or my brand account @gandsilk, I look for clients, not for likes.
Instagram becomes a tool to make my products and designs reach potential customers and there is where the seed idea enters.
You put out in the world your art, and sooner or later the right person will see it.
The price to pay for planting those seeds is having people unfollowing you, being rude, ignoring you…you name it.
But the outcome is worth it.
Great artists have started their career on instagram: @cj_hendry @patricia.otero @marcel_van_luit to name a few. And there is no question about their talent.
I see that there is an association of certified artists with talented artist. Many brilliant artists are self taught. Even in not visual mediums like poetry, a lot of poets thrive through instagram posts to get published.
I think that installing a bit of bitterness in the fact that you are not acknowledged by followers and likes after having been many years in the industry and being hard on new artists with no diplomas and just a few years of experience, is not healthy.
The only accreditation an artist need is the artwork itself.
Nobody has to look down on anybody.
Barbra Streisand has less followers than pop stars and nobody questions that she is one of the greatest.
Not caring about social media at all is great, like Barbra, many outstanding artists do not need social media at all.
The problem is when you want the likes, you want the followers and because you don’t have them, you loathe social media.
That is what I find unfair.
Since the pandemic, Fairs and traditional ways to meet clients have changed. You must be able to use ZOOM, attend virtual meetings and share your designs digitally so that clients can see them.
To keep thinking that in 2021 digital art is inferior, is in my opinion not wanting to see how things are working for freelancers.
Of course if you are part of a company or studio or you have an agent, things can remain a bit as they were.
But those of us, like me, who sell online patterns, have online stores and live in places with no textile industry opportunities, need to rely on social media.
So even if I posted about all the extra weird stuff we face exposing ourselves and our artwork there, it is worth it.
The files we send need to be right and no mater how many artists have thousands of likes, in the end, if the files are a mess, they will only have pointless accolades that will take them nowhere, since on instagram, pretty much any pattern can look great.
I learned digital skills online, I am so grateful to live in this era.
I have a diploma of Fashion Design. I got it in Paris and I received a great training, but zero digital skills.
So I embrace this digital era.
Still, we are not robots we are humans, and my feelings are very human, in real life and on Instagram.
Once you think about instagram in human terms, you value all the positives and forget the numbers.
So let’s stay away from old clichés and let’s dare to create our own paths using every single tool in our favor, not against ourselves or each other and respecting all artists.
We make Instagram and we make the connections not the algorithm.