Have I? I ask this question because I need to reassess what I'm doing with my time online. I'm a photographer who has been trying to push her work on her friends and family for too long, all the while hoping that they would share my work with the same enthusiasm that I had for sharing it. They liked it enough, but it just doesn't seem as if I was getting the message across that I wanted you to look at my website, comment on it, and share it.
Why ask now? Because I have been in denial for a very long time about a sad, sad truth, and that is that I am entirely too focused on Facebook, and not enough about LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and the Adobe forums that I am entitled to use with my subscription to their Creative Cloud Suite.
At one time not too long ago, my Facebook feed had good articles that were shared by friends and colleagues. Since Zuckerberg and Friends have changed their algorithms so much, I find I mistake a lot of what might actually be good stuff for Facebook Ads. Not only, but I think that people are just sharing a whole different kind of status these days.
I'm to blame for a lack of good content as well. I don't post anything of merit because it seems to go largely unnoticed. People don't even read it; I can tell. I might get a like on a good article, but only shares if someone is getting hurt by being stoopid.
FB has become a vast wasteland, and it's a shame. The only real thing it is good for anymore is finding my friends and keeping up with them. Otherwise, it's become as useless as FarmVille - another social pocket that became too greedy too quickly. Zynga, the creators, even admitted they wanted to keep you hooked so that you wouldn't leave. It was a great artistic outlet - I had fun building marvellous landscapes out of nothing - but they never rewarded you with anything worth your time. I didn't need any more chickens, thanks. I wanted more interesting things with which to decorate my beautiful estate. I was out when they flat-out admitted they were robbing us blind of our time. Deleted my iPhone app and everything. pfft.
But, I digress, as I'm wont to do. No one cares about FarmVIlle anymore, least of all me. I've found newer, better creative outlets, and rediscovered some old ones.
Photography has been a huge part of my life since I was in my mid-teens, and I never went any further with it career-wise than as a photo hobbyist. I had a steady, reliable job that didn't pay the greatest salary, but it was close to home, and I had great health benefits and perks. Besides, I was called upon to take photos and design graphics for the department quite often, and I was happy for a while.
After leaving the healthcare industry last year, I was seriously considering buying into a leading paint-and-sip franchise. What I learned along the way was that yeah, sure, I could have done it, but I became interested in photography again and was kind of relieved when after almost a year of due diligence and real-estate searching, I backed away with the blessing of my business partner.
After that, I became involved with a local 'portfolio review' meet-up, and what I learned from them was that I was wasting my time going to portfolio review classes and that I needed to build a portfolio. My work was worthy, but I really needed to get back into the mix.
I found some Meet-Ups in Manhattan, and one of them brought me to Pace University and a series of classes that were all overviews of what could be done with Adobe Photoshop Lightroom, Photoshop, and the proper lighting and exposure in the first place. Why fix 500 photos for color and lighting when you can get it right the first time and not have to edit those particular things at all?
These short overviews led to my eventual enrollment in a new continuing education program at Pace that they were building based on the feedback from the meet-ups. The certification in digital photography and retouching I will be receiving in September will make me very employable, and will also help me to become certified in Adobe Photoshop/Lightroom.
For now, I'm doing the best with what I have and doing what I can do to be productive and be one of those people who write the interesting articles that used to get shared all the time on Facebook. I think the LinkedIn people appreciate it more, anyway.
I still love you, FB.
Visit my blog page at Cathleen's Scene, and my Photography page at CathleenGillingham.com