There are literally hundreds of photography and social media sites for you to visit and post your images on. From Flickr and 500px to twitter and tumblr, there are some really great places to upload your images. How do you choose which one to use? How many should you choose?
This are question that I have been asking myself for quite some time so I thought I would share my experience in research and testing of various sites and why I settled on the ones I did.
First off, you need to consider how much time you want to spend in uploading images online. That, more than anything, will determine which sites and how many. I started off really small, only posting to Flickr, and most of those were in private folders. The photos I posted publicly were few and far between as I wanted to get a good grasp on what I was shooting and how I was shooting it. In short, I wanted to clarify my vision before broadcasting it across the web. Starting small was helpful in establishing my process as it was much less overwhelming being focused on one site.
I use Flickr as a portfolio more than for outreach and feedback. The reason is I wasn’t (and still not) a fan of the interface and community. I had very few people viewing my photos and it was even more rare for someone to comment on them.
After a few months of Flickr, I decided that I wanted to expand my outreach to a better community, one that would help me become a better photographer. After a little searching I found ViewBug. I’m about a year in and, so far, it has been exactly what I have been looking for. There are challenges that are community driven and contests that have rewards like cameras, gift cards, lenses, etc… The community challenges are some of my favorite things to do as they give a wide range of topics to shoot. Plus it enables you to upload and create a portfolio/catalogue of your images that people can see when looking at your profile. The greatest thing that I like about it though is the community. More people are seeing my photos because of the categories and filters you can assign to your images when you upload them. Plus, the way people can comment and “like” you image give you a easy understanding as to what people like about your image without them needing to comment on them. It’s a quick peer review of sorts that gives you a good idea as to what people liked about your image.
While Facebook is one of the most popular social media sites, I’m not a huge fan of it. It doesn’t offer a portfolio that you can build. It really just serves to get feedback (which can be really useful if you are looking for and can take some constructive criticism) from group members.
There you have it, start small and grow from there. I hope this has been helpful!