Stumble Into Indonesia's Unseen Places
Submitted by mumunmumun on 20 April 2015 • Blog
It has come to my attention, and I think I can speak for a lot of people, that Instagram has successfully become a social media force to be reckoned with. It seems like everyone has an Instagram account and it’s become one of the easiest therapeutic mini-escape with displays of beautiful pictures and interesting caption (which could also mean online shops having a sale). In terms of traveling, apparently, Indonesia has been doing well when it comes to Instagram. Indonesian accounts can be levelled with some of the international influencers on this social media platform having 300,000 – 500,000 followers or more. We had the privilege to travel with them and see how they work their magic. With that, I’d like to share a thing or two about them.
One time on a famtrip, I happened to catch the Indonesian Instagramers taking pictures of burning incense. It’s like any other incense in any temple, but somehow they found a way to make it interesting. On the same trip, I saw Arie of @konservatif take a picture of a zinc wall with uneven red paint and one light blue coat hanger on it. It’s hardly interesting but to him, it’s worth a possibility of a picture of two with hundreds if not thousands of hearts.
Picture by @rianasaaf.
“Hey, there’s an old washing machine,” I pointed out on our trip. The washing machine still had its distinct shape but plants have found a home in its main container and made a life.
“Yeah, we got that already,” Uyul of @niseng said. He implied ‘we’ for the Instagramers, as there were bloggers and social media savvies in the same group. Apparently, abandoned things is a consensus as interesting for them.
They also have a different sense of caption. Most of them say less, although Instagram provide a lot of characters for its caption. Some use lyrics, some use poetry, all tell a story.
Most of these Instagramers use their viewfinders a lot, while most of us probably would use the screen of our camera LCDs. Maybe they want to block out other sights from their view and focus on the end product. Photographers are usually the same. In this sense, Instagramers are similar to photographers. They only photos taken from viewing the LCD usually applies for pictures taken with mobile phones. I’d also like to point out that most of them use an iPhones, as they say the display color and camera are better for mobile photography.
When traveling with Indonesian Instagramers, like photographers, they can suddenly disperse when arriving to a location. They’d disappear to suddenly appear with awesome pictures on their memory card. They’re the lost children of the group, but always manage to come back.
Instagramers usually use applications to add that umph to their photos. Snapseed and VSCO Cam are amongst the most popular, aside to using filters from Instagram itself. The thing is, sometimes they don’t use one application, they can use two or three. They understand the characteristic of each app and can use each one to their advantage. Usually, they don’t bluntly use a filter, they work the concentration and combine it with other filters or applications. It’s complicated but fascinating to watch.
Another interesting thing about instagramers is that their feeds seem to have a tone. Whether it’s bold or subtle color, full or empty fill, there’s a distinct style for each Instagramer with hundreds of thousand followers.
“If one picture is off (on the feed), I erase it,” says @rianassaaf. No matter how much likes are on that picture, if it doesn’t fit in, it’s gone. I guess this applies to many photographers, as each and everyone of them has a style. I’m assuming that Instagram has catered to the ideal portfolio of their favorite work.
We’ve learned that feeds are sometimes even coordinated in threes to make nice rows of photos. Extending borders and even placing what picture on what side, matters once seen on a feed. An extreme would have to be our recent finding like (Singaporean Instagramer) @orghanic, or on a simpler scale, our friend @gilangtamma (better seen on mobile phone).
“So how did you get so many followers? You bought them, didn’t you?” I had the nerve to ask @Ernandaputra about his 500k followers at the time. I think you could hear a pin drop of awkward silence within the room, before finally a burst of laughter out of the absurd question.
Instagram features and puts recommended Instagramers on a suggest list. Most of the accounts with ridiculous amount of followers (though not real world celebrities), have been featured or apperared on a suggested list by @Instagram. That’s when followers add fast. Naturally, those featured are awesome accounts.
“Yes. I bought mine on Kaskus,” @puanindya jokes as we in Indonesia know that followers and likes can be easily bought from accounts on Kaskus.com. From her feed, you can tell she’s joking.
If all that hassle wasn’t enough, maybe using an analog camera could do it. There’s this community called byepixel where Instagramers take pictures with film to then develop, scan, transfer, and upload on their mobile phones. In a time where things are simple from your hand, this community refuses to move on and reside in a time where pictures were unpredictable and results were available after a series of processes.
Many of these Instagramers have obtained income from their account. Instagram has quickly become a platform with its own set of celebrities, market place, and creation to help campaigns. It’s become an interesting media aside to Twitter and Facebook. There’s nothing wrong with that, I must add.
Luckily, I’ve traveled with awesome Instagramers, and have yet to travel with any cocky or annoying ones. I’m not sure whether the Instagramers with high amount of followers are the nicest people or that I haven’t traveled with them long enough. I guess, if Indohoy stick around a little longer, we’d find out. In the mean time, we’re gonna take these notes and learn from them.
So, who do you follow and do these notes apply on your favorite Instagram accounts?
We also have a story on traveling with the foodies.