In today’s society we read report after report stating we spend too much time on social media, that teenagers are depressed because what they believe to be reality is skewed and the pressure to be ‘perfect’ is higher than ever before. But is this really all because of Instagram? I had a chat with influencer, content creator, and creative consultant, Nimi Blackwell (@nimiblackwell) about the ups and downs of content creation.
Born and bred in London, Nimi has always loved photographing and sharing stories. She started her Instagram account around five years ago, and grew her following reposting images from film festivals, the Royal Family and reportage photography while she worked at Getty Images, the stock photography company – and that’s how her career was born.
Battle of Likes
As Instagram became more popular and companies started noticing content creators, the competition of having the most followers and the highest engagement rate began. For some, it has now become a daily struggle trying to keep your numbers up without losing quality of content – which was the main point of the platform in the beginning.
Today, almost all content creators edit their images quite heavily – and that’s absolutely fine as long as we know the difference between Photoshop and reality.
A perfect example, the difference of real life and Instagram lightning.
‘I love seeing how creatives and graphic designers can manipulate an image to what would be impossible in real life.’
You’ve got to remember that Instagram is about thumb-stopping imagery, it’s where artistic and creative content can come to life.
Before asking questions about what it's like to work on social media and if an influencer ever gets tired of all the ‘perfect’ lives, you have to remember one thing; a feed is most likely only going to feature the good stuff. It’s very rare you see someone at their worst, or just doing daily stuff like going to Tesco’s to get groceries. The problem isn’t Instagram itself, it’s that we forget that it showcases a skewed reality and strive to look the same, do the same and be the same.
If you can’t scroll through a feed without thinking you need to change something about yourself, sit down and think what’s behind this need for visual change – if it’s Instagram, allow yourself to have a break, follow the accounts that actually inspire you in a good way. Instagram is a platform to seek inspiration, not to run yourself down.
‘It’s pretty much impossible not to have anxiety caused by social media from time to time.’
Nimi works on Instagram and her job is to engage her audience and produce beautiful content, how can you not care about likes, followers and engagement rates when that’s what basically pays your bills? As a content creator today, there is more competition than ever to produce the best content, attracting brands and followers and this does put an immense pressure on those trying to grow within this world. It’s important to always take a step back and remember why you’re producing content in the first place – to have fun.
‘It’s important for your mental health to have some down time’.
Want Nimi’s top tips? Don’t go for longer than a week or two without a break, remember to spend time with your friends and family – without your phone, and last but not least – have fun!
Image by Nimi Blackwell.