Comment received on Instagram :
“Why u do so much editing . Im sorry but i think it will look more pretty if its original . Ur a great photographer n i envy ur work but sometime the originals are the best then anything”
Let us discuss :
Let us begin by ignoring the language, grammar and short-hand.
“Why do you do so much editing?”
What is “too much” editing? Who decides? It is my Instagram account and ID and I am the photographer. The decision to choose a subject to photograph, to decide what frame to photograph, what post-production to apply is mine alone – when it comes to personal photography projects. When a client is paying me, then the client has *some* say in this decision-making process. The reason clients hire me is because they like my work – so they let me do my work and pay me for it. Further, I also decide which photographs make it to my Instagram feed – not all do. This decision is based on what’s “in season”, what have I not shared earlier and what I was suddenly reminded of and maybe even what’s part of my social media strategy. The Internet commentor is just a stranger in front of a screen. Not a fellow-photographer, not a prospective client, not a promoter of art, not a peer, not a friend, not a critic. Crawling out of the woodwork.
If you were, you wouldn’t be leaving inane comments on the work of people you don’t know and have not interacted with previously, ever. To remind, “sorry” means : “feeling sad or distressed through sympathy with someone else’s misfortune.” The photograph this comment was received under was from a beautiful European city. I was there. I photographed it. What misfortune? Dolt.
You obviously don’t.
“It will look more pretty if it was the original.”
Will it? Show me. Go to that European city, photograph it and show it to me against the photograph I published and explain how your original looks more pretty. If you’re attempting to compare it to the unedited RAW version of the photograph I have posted, you’re speculating. Not thinking. Because you haven’t seen the original and you never will.
What is original? Nothing. We have been re-producing art and photographs of the same locations and subjects for decades now. Nothing is original. Everything is built on something else. Improvised. Different angles or frames maybe. Original is not equal to “unedited or RAW”.
“You’re a great photographer.”
I will agree with you when you hire me or buy a print of one of my photographs. Support artists yo!
“I envy your work.”
You envy my access. Because you just told me you don’t like my editing. And editing is part of my work. Decide already!
“Sometimes, originals are better than anything else.”
Maybe. Go make your own. I’ll do whatever the fuck I want on my social media, thank you.
I consider the above comment-maker to be a troll. I do not engage with trolls online and I will not respond to their comment on Instagram. They have a protected / private profile on Instagram too. So much easier to hide online and leave inane comments on strangers’ feeds. Like Brene Brown says, if you are not in the arena getting your ass-kicked like I am, I am not interested in your feedback. But a great addition to my #WTFNaina series on this blog! So, thank you for that O Stranger From The Internet!
More anecdotes and stories in the #WTFNaina series. ( These are all inspired by true stories. Some written emails, some from face-to-face meetings. They have all been piling up for years now and I’ve decided to put them to use! )