monday, march 11, 2024

Mom, I'M on a podcast

I moved to Vienna about 1,5 years ago and have, since then, stumbled upon a fabulous group of creatives. One of the kindest people in this group is Ulrich Aydt: he’s a fellow photographer and hosts a weekly podcast, in which he is joined by all sorts of lovely humans who want to talk about a certain aspect of their industry.

When Ulrich first approached me with the idea to record an episode together, I was a little nervous, as it was something I hadn’t done before. Thinking again, why wouldn’t I jump on an opportunity like this and try something new? We ended up talking for an hour about all things social media and I feel extremely honoured to now be featured on episode 29 of his podcast “Gestatten Sie?” 

You can listen to the entire 51-minute-episode on Spotify here:

If you prefer reading or don’t speak German, here’s a little wrap up:

The initial idea about this topic actually stems from my own personal experience with the use of social media. I’ve previously dealt with the struggle of multipotentuality by making a short film about it and have now started this blog to feature my way of dealing with numerous topics. You can imagine me as the type of person who wants/needs to “talk it out”. Which is why it made perfect sense for me to literally talk about it with Ulrich. So that’s what we did!

Diving into the pros and cons of networking online, being exposed to the incredible amounts of inspiration available, and how it makes you feel to compare your own work constantly and unconsciously. Most importantly, how dangerous it can become for the mental health if an excessive amount of personal social media use goes unnoticed. 

We both agreed that we’ve experienced a shift in the priorities of all social platforms and what certain type of content algorithms encourage, which then leads to every creator creating the same type of art. Sadly, this resultsdue to the need to follow trends, in a complete lack of individuality and authenticity. Many photographers and artists feel frustrated with their work not reaching a relevant audience because they can’t put in the effort to feed into the algorithms requirements of posting daily. Content creation (at the frequency that is currently expected by algorithms) is a full-time job, which most freelance creators can’t deliver as their professions aren’t “social media managers” but photographers or artists or something else entirely.

It seems unjust and only encourages my hope that society will retract from the obsessive presence on social media platforms and revert back to a level of posting that brings joy to the creators and is independent of algorithms. 

I love social media for its endless possibilities and the connecting benefits, but it’s also become quite stressful for me. Taking away the pressure of having to deliver “on top of your main job” results in a more relaxed relationship with the app for me. However, everyone seems to have a different capacity here, and I’m a strong believer in listening to your gut. For me, that means caring less about numbers and more about quality connections.

Truly, I think everyone has to figure out their own level of dedication to instagram and what purpose it’s supposed to serve them. 


& finally, I’d love to just sum it all up using Ulrich’s words:  “We discussed how algorithms affect our creative work and how they might limit creative diversity. We discussed if creatives in some way need to be influencers nowadays to be relevant or if just focusing on creating beautiful work and showing it to the most relevant people might be even more important.
In any case, the most important thing is to find your own approach to social media. Think about what you personally want to do most as a creative and whether social media can be helpful as a supporting technology. Don’t make your own value dependent on likes, but listen to your own gut feeling about how your own use feels right and how you can best integrate social media into your own work in order to make the most of the positive aspects but not let the negative aspects get out of hand.”

ps: we also did a fun little Q&A video, which you can find here

pps: feel free to share your thoughts on the topic below this post :)) thank you