Holiday Gifts + Instagram = FUN TIMES

by Jennifer Keegin

Love yourself some Instagram?

Here are  two ways to indulge this holiday season.

Have a ton of photos you’d love to have with you always? Want to turn your photos into a cool Holiday gift? Here’s a round up of some cool ideas and websites to get started:

  • Make a bracelet from your shots on Etsy.
  • Instagram magnets. From StickyGram.com. Each StickyGram is 50mm x 50mm. That’s approximately the same size as they appear on your iPhone. They come in packs of 9.
  • Blow your pics up and turn them into a work of art – on canvas.
  • Make calendars via apps called Calendagram or Keepsy.

Love instagram? Or know someone who uses it constantly? Buy them something Instagram related:


Crocheted Instagram Mini Bag. Purse. Pouch. OR a case for your sunglasses here.

Either way, have fun taking photos with the changing of the season and all the fun times ahead of you during the Holidays.

Holiday Gifts + Instagram = FUN TIMES

Thinking Before You Snap

by Anitra Cottledge

Last week, our staff took a group photo wearing our new Women’s Center hoodies. We took pictures facing toward and away from the camera (as our hoodies have design elements on both the front and back), but I instructed one of our communications interns to only use the one facing away from the camera on our blog and social media sites. Why? Because not everyone had expressed consent with having their image used in the office’s marketing efforts.

I feel very serious about this issue. Remember my intro post from earlier this year where I talk about the fact that if I didn’t work in a Women’s Center, I might be an intellectual property lawyer? Yeah. I’m that person who brings stacks of photo release forms to every event. I know that some people feel that there is a reasonable expectation that one might be photographed at a public event, but I just don’t feel satisfied with that view. As someone who attends a lot of public events, I don’t think that my very attendance means that I’m OK with someone taking my photo. My attendance doesn’t mean that I’m going to be OK with seeing a photo that I don’t even remember taking up on Facebook the next day. (Actually, if you know me, you will know just how not OK I am with that scenario.)

In case anyone is wondering, I definitely believe that this issue has everything to do with social justice and feminist practice. It seems like a very basic concept that someone should not only have the right to determine what to do with their bodies, but should also, to whatever extent possible, be able to control their images and consent to those images being used or shared with others. Again, some people might talk about celebrities or public figures, although one could argue that they, too, have a right to not want to be photographed. I’m willing to have that conversation, but for the purposes of this post, I’m talking about the rest of us: the non-celebrities and private citizens. To go back to the opening paragraph of this post, I also don’t believe that just because people work for an office, they should be expected to publicize their images. For instance, if you have an office contact page on your website that features photos of staff, I really believe you have to be OK with a staff member who, for whatever reason, doesn’t want to post their photo.

This is also a technology issue; we (the collective we) use and take all sorts of images everyday, whether we are professional or hobby photographers, or people who utilize images in poster and web design. Are we using images appropriately, or taking them with consent?

I think about this particularly in the context of how organizations use photos to communicate with their constituencies about their goals and initiatives. What does it mean when an organization takes a photo without permission or consent, and uses it on its website or in its brochure? What then happens when the people in the unauthorized photo stumble across the website or receive the brochure in the mail, and see themselves? They may have never had any substantive interaction with the organization, and the organization’s practices may not really align with whatever values they were using the photo to communicate in the first place. It’s complex stuff, stuff that if not properly thought out, can quickly turn squicky and sometimes unethical.

On an individual basis, if a person runs to the store in a wacky outfit, they’re not doing that with the intention or expectation of being filmed or photographed. They’re going to get some potato chips and some iced tea. It’s true that sometimes, photos that are taken without consent can spark interesting discussion. A great example of this is the photo taken of the Sikh woman with facial hair a couple of weeks ago. Her response to the photo created a space where people could talk about issues of spirituality, gender, gender presentation, and bodies. Environments where dialogue can flourish are wonderful. However, I have to agree (with someone mentioned in the article) that one of the things to think about is, “…that it’s not ok to take photos of strangers and post them on the internet without permission.” In short, I really believe that people should pause and think before they pull out their smartphones and snap that photo of some unsuspecting person.

How do you feel about this issue? Does your office or organization have policies regarding the use of event and staff photography?

Thinking Before You Snap

App Highlight: Nostalgio

By Jennifer Keegin

In the last two weeks or so, my co-worker got a new iPhone 4S and my mom got a new iPad. Between the two of them, apps have become a frequent topic. After deciding it was time for me to revisit my own apps on my iPad, I came across a new app that was just what I was searching for. An app that allows me to create collages or frames within my Instagram photos.

Have you seen these images like this one on Instagram?

It was killing me. How did they do that? How did they get three pictures on one slide? The answer is Nostalgio. You can take pictures while using the app or use photos from your albums. Its available FOR FREE on iPad and iPhone.

Here’s some info from their site:

Nostalgio helps you arrange your photos into a beautiful photo collage and share it with your friends via e-mail, Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Flickr, and Instagram.

Featured by Apple in the Photo & Video Essentials and Staff Favorites!

Features:

• Lots of collage templates
• Great variety of frames
• Customizable borders
• Live Camera mode in all frames
• Most popular photo filters: Cross-Process, Black&White and Sepia. You can use them individually on a single photo!
• Pick a layout for your collage
• Choose photos from albums or take new ones
• Use camera simultaneously in all frames to take pictures of the same object and enjoy fun results!
• Tap Random button and let the app create a collage for you
• Rotate and resize your photos
• Save and share your collages in different sizes
• Save and share your images across multiple social networks: Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Flickr, and Instagram

Experiment – we’ve done everything to ensure the perfect result!

It takes a little bit to get used to how you place the photos, and you might have to try a couple of different templates to find the configuration you like best (which means you’ll have to start over again with the selection of pictures) BUT – its worth it. If you don’t follow me on Twitter or Facebook, you missed a few collections of pics of my little one who is quite the character. She has a very expressive face, and being able to show a few different faces she’s made on one shot is the best.

This app allows you to create the shots you want first, then you can either save it to your device and be done or you can share it.

You will have to connect all your accounts which as always takes a little time to set up.

Again, being able to put these collages into Instagram was the best-and so yes-if you start listing out the steps for creating these shots for Instagram specifically, I’m talking about:
1. Taking pictures.
2. Turning the photos into a collage of sorts via Nostalgio and then
3. Putting them into Instagram and then
4. Editing it and THEN
5. Sharing them.

If you don’t mind all the steps and using multiple apps and screens – then check it out. (It’s easier if you’re just saving them or sharing via Facebook etc.).

 

App Highlight: Nostalgio