Sunday, 13 September 2015

Instant Instagram appeal


It's time to admit it: I've been seduced by Instagram.  It was the last thing I expected.  It started slowly, I suppose like all seductions.  An account opened out of curiosity, then a few tentative photos posted over several months, but without hashtags so that I wasn't visible.  Needless to say my children found this hilarious - what was the point of being on social media if I wasn't being social?  

A big breakthrough was when my son explained, very gently, that the 'instant' part of Instagram didn't need to be taken literally.  I had thought that it all needed to be done live - take the photo, sort out your hashtags, publish.  Of course when I'm out and about I don't have my reading glasses on and it's always too much of a fangle to fish in my bag for them, so I was squinting at this tiny screen trying to get everything done instantly.  Discovering that it's possible to post photos that I'd taken previously made me very happy indeed.  

So why have I been Instagramming away this summer and neglecting my blog?  Well, I spend five days a week in front of a computer screen, choosing words very carefully.  An ever so slightly misjudged word can have huge consequences in my workplace, and I feel as if my days are spent leafing through a mental Roget's Thesaurus.  When I get home the last thing I feel like doing is crafting more words in front of a screen.  Instagram is also much faster technically than Blogger.  Most of all, it's made for the posting of a single photo that doesn't need to carry the weight of a narrative.  My camera and phone memory cards are full of photos like this.  Interesting (I hope), perhaps quirky, things I'd like to share, but not enough to support a blog post. And I am loving discovering glimpses of other people's visual worlds through hashtags, in a much more agile and pick up/put downable way than blog hopping. I still love reading other people's narrative blogs, and wish I had more time for it.  In a way I'm returning to how I started this blog back in 2008, which was with the photos foremost and minimal text.  I will probably continue blogging, but it's a bit of a relief not to feel dutiful about it, and I'll have to see how the balance goes. Coincidentally, I read Stephanie Donaldson in Country Living this month giving the same reasons for why she is enjoying Instagram.

After all of that, here are some of the escapee photos from this summer.  A day of lochs and historic houses in the Borders.  Above, Talla Reservoir in high summer, grasses that are now bleached by autumn, blowing in the soft wind.  Below, Megget Reservoir, beautifully remote-seeming and yet pretty close to Edinburgh.
 


Below, Traquair House near Innerleithen.  A fascinating house to visit, with lovely gardens.

Traquair House

From the house looking up the driveway



The maze, from an upstairs window

Next time I have a story to tell I'll be back here, but you can catch up with the instant side of things on @occasionalscotland on Instagram, or use the Instagram button on my sidebar.

25 comments:

  1. Love your instagram! Keep the pictures coming. I hope to take a trip to Scotland and take some of my own pictures there, too. Joyce

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    1. Thank you Joyce, that's really nice of you. I hope you do get to Scotland - there's a lot to see in a small package.

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  2. The first two photos are the kind that choke up the back of my throat with tears. The maze - looks like the one from Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire!

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    1. Sorry to be choking you up. I didn't think of the Goblet of Fire maze, I was remembering when we had a birthday party for my daughter here - shipped down ten 11 year old girls for a day at the house and grounds including picnic and outside games. The maze was a big hit and we could keep an eye on them from this upstairs window.

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  3. Really well put OS. I'm surprised too by how much I'm enjoying instagram and your feed.

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    1. Likewise yours! It is fun, isn't it?

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  4. Breathtaking photos- and that maze!

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    1. Thank you. The maze is pretty special, isn't it.

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  5. Very interesting to read your reasons for "being seduced" by Instagram. I feel things have gone very quiet on the blogging front, and I'm aware that lots of people are using Instagram. I personally don't use the internet on my phone, and I like crafting words and photos on my blog posts. But who knows what I'll feel like doing in a year's time or less! You've been in my thoughts lately.

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    1. That's interesting Christine, I hadn't really thought of it as using the internet on my phone. The only thing I use the internet as such for on my phone is the weather forecast and the BBC news, but not every day. I tend to post Instagram photos on wifi, as otherwise it makes very heavy use of mobile data. Likewise I have been thinking about you and hoping for a chance to be in Glasgow but alas it is not happening.

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  6. Love the shots, Linda! I don't do Instagram so will watch for your new blog posts.

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    1. Thank you RedPat. I am missing visiting other people's blogs more than I am posting on my own. I need 48 hours in the day!

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  7. I have not tried Instagram and although I HAVE a Pinterest, I really don't know how to navigate through it very well at all! To see YOUR photos I would be willing to try Instagram! Let's see if I can figure it out!
    I always get excited when I see a posting from you! Loved ALL your photos today as always!

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    1. You seem to have managed to navigate Instagram, Linda! I have to admit I failed with Pinterest - it was just too complex for me.

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  8. Nice photos! I've been enjoying your posts on Instagram. :)

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    1. Thanks Linda, and I'm enjoying yours.

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  9. Hello, I'm with you on the Instagram dabbling! I'll try and keep my blog going too, more for my own sake than for my few readers!

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    1. It's a bit of a juggling act trying to keep both going but worth it I think. I see you've been up and out on the bike already this morning.

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  10. I feel the same way about Instagram as a welcome break from, and lovely complement, to blogging. Thanks for ❤️ing some of my photos on IG. I'll be sure to return the favour soon!

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    1. I need to set aside time to discover your blog properly - so much to explore!

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  11. Your first two photos do a great job of presenting the view. We are there.

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    1. Thank you. It was a beautiful day down in the Borders and I'm glad that comes across to you.

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  12. I really like IG too, but also enjoy blogging. I enjoy following you on IG so am happy to see you here, or there! X

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  13. It's interesting how we can show slightly different things on each medium. I have a bit of catching up to do with your blog.

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  14. I am another who has found Instagram increasingly appealing. It complements other social media, and is great when one is just too tired and short of time or inspiration for a blog post. I shall look you up!

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