Monday, March 17, 2014

Why You Should Be on Pinterest

Recently we blogged about “Why You Should be on Instagram” and we’re continuing the social media marketing trend with Pinterest. The lesser known website serves as a digital inspiration board. Filled with thousands and thousands of photos, Pinterest is ideal when looking to overcome your photographer’s block*.

From left to right: Hereus de Joaquim Gomis, Claude Nori, Ben Zank. Posted to "Places We Like", "Magnificent Make-up and Hair" and "Photographs We Like" respectively. 
Now, to get into the details. Once you create an account on Pinterest, you can start pinning. What that means is you create a “board” (kinda like a folder that you keep your files in) complete with name, description and category. Then, you start uploading photos to that board, or multiple boards if you’ve started creating specific boards (if you visit our page, you can see we have a few boards: for women’s fashion, food, animals, kids, etc.) With each photo you pin, you can add some information; we try to attach the site we found the photo on as well as the photographer, if applicable. And, that’s pretty much it.

First two images by Ben VanOrt, third unknown and, last by Fox Fodder Farm. Posted to "Places We Like" and Fantastic Flowers and Plants" 

Full disclosure: the first time someone showed me Pinterest, my initial thought was well, this is stupid. And, a lot of people think that as well. I mean, why do you need an inspiration board at all, let alone a digital one? Look at a photography book or a magazine, right? Yeah, that’s what I thought, too. But, once I started using the site, like really using it, I found out why so many people had become dedicated “pinners”.

Left by William Eggleston, right unknown. 
Posted to "Delectable Drinks"
The trick to getting into Pinterest is to follow the right boards. It’s not as easy as it sounds, I mean, how do you find good Pinterest boards? Of course you can follow your friends, but they may not be pinning things that you are really interested in, or things that inspire you. So, the next step is to do a little digging. The first accounts I tried to follow were found by Google-ing “best Pinterest boards to follow,” which turned up some good results, but, not great. So, I started searching for specific photos I wanted to see. For example: let’s say I wanted to see photos associated with Kinfolk Magazine, just search and photos from Kinfolk pop up. In many cases, the people that like Kinfolk are into the same kinds of photography I’m into, so I follow them, then I see who they’re following and find other boards I like and follow those, too. So-on-and-so-forth until you have a whole slue of awesome pins piling up in your feed that you can then “like” or “repin”. Pinterest is a lot like Instagram in that way: search, find, follow. Pinterest also offers other ways to find boards, including suggested boards below pins as well as other than have pinned the same photo.

Photographers unknown. Left photograph of Shannyn Sossamon, right Morrissey. Posted to "Celebrity Photography"

Now that we’ve covered what Pinterest is and how it works, why should you be on it?

This brings us back to photographer’s block. As a photographer myself, I know what it’s like to want to go out and photograph something, but what do you shoot? I find that when I spend a significant amount of time looking at photo after photo that inspires me, I suddenly know what it is that I want to shoot. I’ve already started working on a personal project inspired by an editorial campaign I saw on Pinterest. And, just like that, the site justifies why it exists.

Photograph of Ariel Alasko's workspace. Posted to "Awesome Office Spaces"

But, be aware: there are A LOT of photographs of Paris on Pinterest; may cause wanderlust and travel envy.  

Pinterest is helpful in other ways, too. With recipes, interior decorating tips, life hacks and fashion spreads, it’s easy to find a million other ways Pinterest can influence a million aspects of your life. But, we’ll let you see that yourself.

Left photograph by Herriot Grace, right Seven Spoons. Posted to "Savory Food"

If you didn’t already pick-up on it, we’re on Pinterest. Follow our boards to see what kinds of photo-related tidbits we’re pinning!

*Photographers block is the creative hump you experience when you just don’t know what to shoot. Much like writer’s block, but Pinterest cannot help with writer’s block.