The camera, that tool that has witnessed the sociological evolution through its lens, is and has been the expressive vehicle of the cultural context, as well as having an essential role in science, journalism, advertising and art.
The first capture1 of a memory of history was born in the year 1826 by Joseph-Nicéphore Niépce. A landscape photograph from the window of the inventor’s office changed the history of human memory.
The snapshots from then to the reality of today have been representing our anthropological heritage, making the map of human behavior through the lens.
Today the camera has become an instrument of influence in social networks for the construction of social relations. Currently, it is not feasible not to think about the binomial camera-trip and the snapshots represent, in a great majority of the population, a social indicator of reputation and a register of beauty canons or models of behavior.
The constant adaptation of new technologies to the existing demand, demonstrates the captivating influence of photographs on social networks. The need to achieve a visual “film” look has resulted in the creation of apps like PhotoPills2, which allow us to specify the ideal light hour according to the place, date and time we are in. Also, the SOVS app that, thanks to the superposition of templates of silhouettes models, it allows the fitting of the pose of the person on the stage.
Other examples of innovative tools are websites like Shothotspot.com, which facilitates the geolocation of the best places to take pictures in the world, or Subexpuesta.com that allows you to find the best night photography locations.
Social networks play a fundamental role in our own personal brand, right? And among them, Facebook3 is the flagship that with its more than two billion users is positioned at the top of the worldwide ranking.
However, Instagram with its more than one billion users, has become the social network of photography par excellence, especially among users between the ages of 18 and 35, who are the most active. This application has allowed us to tell our individual story and narrate the largest4 number of trips photographed.
The social power of photography is so indisputable that a large percentage of that already said young public, prior to making decisions about which destinations to travel5, has as a requirement that they will be good looking places. Instagram is a reference place, source of inspiration6 when determining the trip of users; That is to say, the pattern of behavior of the traveler is to look for photographs through and for Instagram.
This application is the place where most trips are shared and promoted daily, becoming a standard-bearer for excellence in the tourism sector7. Currently, we live the need to express the traveler presentism: we have to reflect everything. Proof of this is the hashtag #travel, which has been one of the most typed and used with a total of 417,497,737 mentions in publications.
Are you realizing how far the captivating power of photography gets?
The new practices of the traveler are changing and the Instagram user, analyzing the content of the most influential people (instagramers), obtain a “certified” travel guide. And Instagram has identified in this social network a commercial photographic field, a valuable new channel of reservations for tourism8.
This is the case of OpenTable9, which detected the potential of Instagram, since many users were visually inspired by the seductive recipes of the restaurants embodied in the social network. This global booking platform, integrated since March 2019 on Instagram, now allows you to benefit (thanks to digital photos) and book in any country of the 20 in which it is present.
On the other hand, the Look & Book10 feature of the EasyJet company offers a new booking experience through Instagram. Without knowing the destination, just by looking at a photograph, we can imagine and book our destination. But, how does this work? Thanks to an optical recognition system, they can check the location of the snapshot and consequently confirm the destination.
Isn’t it awesome? It is exciting to see how far originality and technological creations have come to adapt to the needs of each new generation. The brilliance of the first experiment of the inventor, added to all the talent integrated in time, shows the permanent and unlimited transformation of the photographic industry.
Looking back Joseph-Nicéphore Niépce could have never dreamed of the power his genius would achieve, or did he dream it?
Photography that was previously only in the hands of the mainstream media, now shows the empowerment of users. Our social networks expose the social daily life and cultural expression, representing a vision of the world in a dream environment, a showcase of supposed happiness.
But there are many questions to ask: what will the visual discourse be like in the next 200 years? Will we continue to use the photographs as such or will they evolve to 360º videos and holograms? Will we be able to find a balance between identity and intimacy?
We will remain attentive to all the unstoppable innovations and the infinite power of photography.