An Experiment: Photographing The Woods With My iPhone

I need something new + creative to do in my life so I’ve thought about maybe joining Instagram.

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In order to get an idea of what it’d be like to be an Instagramer, I wandered down our backyard stone steps to the terrace-level…

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walked across some crunchy leaves…

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then sat down on a chair where I started taking photos of the autumnal beauty around me with my iPhone.

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Looking at the blah results of my experiment I wonder if I’d ever be happy using a phone to photograph my life.  I do well capturing my life using my camera, but if I was on Instagram I’d be using my iPhone.  I dunno. Maybe yes, maybe no.

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QOTD: 

Are you on Instagram? What do you like about it? What do you photograph? How often do you go there?

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Published by

Ally Bean

Observant. Creative. Humorous. Adaptable. Happy enough. Midwestern by chance. Kindhearted most days.

72 thoughts on “An Experiment: Photographing The Woods With My iPhone”

  1. I’m reluctantly on Instagram and only because I deleted my Facebook account. I had no way of sharing with family and friends all the awesome and ridiculous photos I manage to take at random moments in my life. I have an Instagram attached to my anonymous blog, but don’t post that often to it. My personal Instagram is used much more often. I tend to photograph weird things or situations that lend themselves to my geeky nature; odd chair at Home Goods, a weirdly shaped tomato, my daughter wearing a shower cap over her face, etc.

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    1. w1nt3l, I like your random approach to Instagram. I cannot decide if I’d enjoy being there. I like blogging and I like twitter, but I gave up on FB long ago. Now as winter approaches I’m thinking that I’ll need something new to mess around with, but am not sure if Instagram is for me. *what to do, what to do*

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  2. I can imagine using a phone instead of a luxury camera feels like a kind of a step back in quality. I mainly use Instagram connected to my blog, not for personal/private reasons. The pictures I use are sent from my laptop to phone (I use Android instead of iOs). It is a bit of a hustle this way, but it will do.

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    1. Hans de Gans, you’ve hit the nail on the head. My regular camera allows me much more control of the image. I like your hustle about getting your photos to Instagram. That being said, I realize millions of people take wonderful photos using their phones so maybe there’s a learning curve to all of this. Meaning, I suppose, that the real issue is: do I want to learn? 😉

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  3. Hmmm…so you have to use a cell for Instagram? My phone is wonky. Sometimes it will send picts and sometimes not and they are usually not all that great. I take camera picts myself and download to my desktop. I really need to put them in a cloud. I sure would hate to lose my cat pictures! 🙂

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    1. Kate, I think that to be on Instagram you have to use your cell phone pictures. I do the same thing that you do with my camera photos, and I’m good with that. But the iPhone pics that I take never look that good, so I’m reluctant to start doing something that requires them. Like I said, I dunno.

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  4. I feel like if it’s that worky of a Decision, then it’s probably Not For You. You are a Chatty and Creative blogger who puts photos here and uses this forum for lots of different ideas. What itch aren’t you already scratching?

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    1. nance, you are a wise woman. I agree that learning how to do Instagram will be worky for me. I’m looking for something colorful and challenging to do this winter so that I forget about the inevitable doldrums because I’m so involved in my new challenge. Perhaps this challenge will end up being outside the perimeters of social media. *gasp*

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  5. Nope, just another social media thing I don’t have/want/will need to get rid of. Twitter never made sense to me, I use FB to play a few games now-got rid of my original account long ago and only opened a new one for games. Thus Instagram seems rather a mute point for me. If it seems fun and satisfying to you, why not try it for awhile? You’ll always have your camera and the old-fashioned way of taking photos if you need it 😉

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    1. Deb, I kind of feel like you do about Instagram just being another social media thing that I don’t need. I enjoy blogging and twitter, so whether I need Instagram is a conundrum for me. There’s some cool stuff there, but… ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

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  6. If you keep at it you may find new creative possibilities working with the limitations of the tool. I don’t have a smart phone wit a camera, so no technical advise to give, orther than, explore.

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    1. bobcabking, I only got this smart phone with a camera a few months ago. I’m not all that taken with it, but am trying to find ways to use it. I think that’s why I’m intrigued with Instagram. Not so much for the sense of social media connection as for the challenge of creating something.

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  7. I’ve been on the fence about joining instagram as well mostly because I don’t know if I want it to be yet another aspect of my public face or if I’d prefer to keep my photos more exclusive.

    You might say your photos were blah, but I enjoyed them all the same.

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    1. Allie P, I know what you mean about not wanting to be more public. On the one hand I think it’d be fun to be part of a group that was all about images, but on the other hand I’m not sure how much more I want to tell the world about what I do. Plus, maybe I need to find a challenge beyond social media, ‘ya know?

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  8. I think your photos look pretty good even for phone photos. Perhaps we’re just getting used to seeing phone photos everywhere. Plus, you lose a lot of quality just by putting them online. (I’m not sure how professionals get around that so their photos are still sharp when viewed online). As for instagram, I have an account so I can follow a couple people, but much like twitter, I never remember to check it. Still, you might enjoy it. Quick snapshots of the funny things you see day to day could be fun?

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    1. Zaz, you have a good idea there for a theme. I don’t want to put lots of “people” photos out there, so whatever I do, if I do, will have to be thematic. I wonder if you’re right about everyone getting used to phone photos. Maybe that’s not even an issue.

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  9. I like these photos!

    I am on Instagram, and I enjoy it because I enjoy looking at pictures people have taken, whether they are excellent photographers or not.

    My photos are never that good, but I do like sharing them.

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    1. Bridget, thanks. These photos aren’t as sharp as when I use my camera. I think that’s why I’m ambivalent toward them. You make a good point that Instagram can be there for the mere joy of seeing things, regardless of quality. I can groove on that.

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  10. I have an instagram account but I opened it mostly so I could keep track of my kids, who are all grown and out of the house. Also, some of my creative groups are online and we can see each other’s work by using hashtags. I do notice that most of the same pictures are also on facebook so I don’t really check instagram often. If you are looking for a colorful creative outlet, how about taking your pictures and making a collage journal? I think I might try a 365 project next year again. In 2013 I took a picture a day and then put them all in a journal.

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    1. Janet, your story about how you use Instagram seems to be how most ppl tell me they use it: go there on occasion, but not really commit to it. I’ve thought about doing a 365 day project. I remember years ago, when blogging was all there was, a mom w/ kids took a photo of her kitchen table every day. She made a blog of it which was interesting to follow. Maybe something like that.

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    1. Thanks Janet. I like the phone photos but they aren’t as clear as the camera ones which is why I think I’m worried about them. [Does that make sense?] And yes, this is our backyard which isn’t really much of a yard, more of a forest .

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  11. I like your pictures. You could try taking them with your camera, transferring them to your phone and then posting to Instagram. If you were so inclined. I have an Instagram account, because I have friends who put pictures there that they don’t post to Facebook, but I usually forget to go look, and I very rarely post anything there myself. I say give it a try, see if you like it, and if you don’t, let it go.

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    1. J, good advice. Another person suggested going from camera to phone to Instagram. Hadn’t thought of that. Thanks for the compliment on photos. I don’t hate them, they just surprised me after using a camera all these years. If I do Instagram, it’ll be in a small way for sure.

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  12. I lurrrve Instagram. It’s so nice and quiet. It’s the most drama-free of all social media. I do photo a day challenges most days. Somedays I don’t get on at all, but I do get caught up on weekends. I follow some incredible photographers, some social media ‘friends’, some friends and family, and some interesting strangers who, unbelievably, I’ve come to care for solely based on their photos.
    It is my understanding that some cameras are IG equipped.

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    1. joey, you’re saying words that are music to my ears. Quiet. Drama-free. Yes, please. As a longtime word person, I love the idea of connecting with people based on images. That’d be new for me. Will investigate IG equipped cameras. Didn’t know about that wrinkle. Thanks for telling me.

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  13. I confess to being somewhat curious about the idea of using Instagram, and have Facebook and Pinterest sites, but then there is the issue of making time for each. And then there is keeping track of all those passwords and… oh I’m already feeling overwhelmed. 😀

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    1. In My Cluttered Attic, you’ve explained exactly how I think. All those passwords… all those virtual places to visit… all that planning… and time… and… *sigh* It might be too much for me.

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  14. While my pro-Bean stand on all things may discount my credibility, I thought your pictures were great. Given all the points people raise, perhaps it is best to save your great pics as an exclusive for your very special Bean post readers.

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    1. Zen-Den, thank you. It’s not that they’re bad pictures, it’s just that they’re not as good as usual. So, if I may summarize what I see you saying, you’re suggesting that I choose a different creative outlet than Instagram. There’s something to that.

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    1. Parenting Is Funny, thank you. If that’s the effect they’re having on you, then I’m pleased. I need to learn more about phone cameras. That’s what this may all come down to. Once I know more, I’ll know what to do, right?

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  15. I don’t have a smartphone and don’t know anything about Instagram. One thing I do know is that you have a LOVELY backyard, Ms. Bean!

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    1. Carol, made me laugh out loud with that one. Thank you. The backyard is more of a forest on the side of a hill, but we love it. I only got my smartphone a few months ago, so it’s all new to me. Hence the questions about Instagram.

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    1. nancy, I agree. I’ve thought about doing this off and on, but only recently got a phone that’d allow me to do Instagram. Seems like it might be a good project for me to try come winter.

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  16. I love the way the leaves look, and the stone steps. I haven’t attempted Instagram only because I’m afraid it would take up too much time. I love taking photos though so maybe someday.

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          1. Same here! Maybe it’s better that way though because if you’re impulsive about it, it might be easier to give up soon after leaping into it.

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  17. I’m on Instagram, but I’m not as active as I’d like to be. I’m just not one to share aspects of my life that much unless maybe I’m on vacation or something. But for those who like photography, it’s a must-have social site and it looks like you have a knack for it!

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    1. Stephanie, like you I’m hesitant to share everything I do, everywhere I go. I’ve been checking in on Instagram and see that some people have a theme, so if I do it that’s how I’ll go. More scrapbook, less diary.

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  18. I love your photos and think you would probably like Instagram since it’s more photos, and not the Facebook post aspect. I can’t do it because my iPhone has only 8 gigs and so I don’t use it much for a camera.

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    1. Margaret, thank you. I only got my first smart phone a few months ago, so I haven’t gotten used to it. But maybe I could get into Instagram and learn about my phone at the same time? As a test to see if my old brain can learn new tricks!

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    1. Thanks, Chez Shea. Our backyard is a wooded ravine which lends itself to photos– and lots of broken branches, leaves, deer and squirrels. It’s a cool place, but sometimes a bit too unique.

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  19. I’m on the Instagram and doing the #365Project. I haven’t missed a day (in fact, I mistakenly did #Day8 twice). It’s fun. Mine is telling a story of sorts, unwittingly. It’s fun. Fun, I say! DO IT!

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    1. Tara, your approach to Instagram sounds like a fun one. I’ve thought about doing something like the 365 project. Or maybe something just be completely random. Time will tell what I come up with.

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  20. gorgeous photos Ally Bean! Enjoy your iphone, much to be discovered about it! Mine is pretty smart though I am a bit clueless. I don’t do Instagram – for me it would probably be another addiction …

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    1. Susan, thanks! I like taking photos, but this iPhone camera has me a bit confused, underwhelmed. Mostly because, I’m guessing, I’ve not spent enough time with it. I wonder if I do Instagram, if I’ll become addicted to it? Good point.

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    1. Susan, I’m anxious and I usually am able to shrug off politics. I’ve never seen two more diametrically opposite candidates: an inexperienced entitled sociopath versus a competent but nasty woman. Or at least this is the way the media is portraying them. 0.o

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  21. Facebook and blogging is where i’ve found my comfort zone, Ally. It kind of right in the middle of slow-paced/fast-paced. Lots of family on FB and only a few grandkids on Instagram. Oh …. and I signed onto Twitter (which I rarely use) only for the A to Z Challenge. See you on the other side of the inexperienced entitled sociopath vs the competent but nasty woman. 😉

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    1. Mary Lou, I’ve thought about joining Instagram, but I didn’t have a smart phone. I gave up on FB, but like Twitter. Not sure why I think I need a third place to be online, but I do.

      Today’s the day… hoping for the best… as in Hillary! Not a fan of sociopaths.

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    1. Sarah, I wonder if I’d have the same response to it. I didn’t like Twitter at first, but I got the hang of it and now love it. But do I want to go through another social media learning curve… for reasons I can’t specify? That is the question.

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  22. I absolutely love Instagram! It’s my way of showing my life. I use my iPhone for photography a lot even the I have a fancy Canon (haha). Looking at your post has inspired me to make another Instagram account just for my photography. Thank you!

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