Visual Storytelling on Instagram for Artists

The Arthouse Collective: Visual Storytelling on Instagram for Artist

Everybody loves a good story. Actually, in a recent book I read, the author suggested that perhaps the purpose of life is to tell your story in whatever way you can. Through vocal storytelling, art, dance, cooking etc. 

Our means of storytelling has drastically changed of the last 1000 years. From telling your story around a fire with friends to literally sitting on a bus with your head down posting on Instagram. But is that considered storytelling? YES! People often forget that whether you like it or not, what you post on social media is telling your story. So why not use it to your advantage? Think more clearly about what you are posting and how it affects the people who are following you. 

Selfies.

This doesn’t mean you have to get online and share your personal life for everyone to see. There are ways of transporting your followers to your world without posting a photo of yourself. Actually it’s much easier to do it without a photo of yourself. Using visually stimulating images, a cleaver, authentic tone of voice plus a thought out caption, is all you need to create a personal account. Once you have a personal platform, your work becomes more authentic and people can see how you get to where you go with your work. They story behind your work becomes more real and people feel more connected to it. 

Forget about number of followers.

Post with substance and meaning. Have your say and speak your voice. It doesn’t matter if it reaches 100 or 1 million, if you are posting from the heart then people will connect with you and in turn, probably follow you. We’re big on not following trends here at The Arthouse Collective so if everyone is posting photos of their art in a perfectly manicured house - forget it. Don’t feel the pressure to have the perfect page. It’s expensive and unnessicary and generally takes away from your personal story anyway. Post where you are, be authentic. You don’t have to be perfect! It does make it easier if you are cool - and guess what, being individual is cool these days so you’ll be fine!

Your Voice.

Talk like you’re talking to your best friend or your mum. Make people feel like you’re comfortable and they will be to. Being relaxed and open allows people to see that you are authentic and so is your work.

Relatable.

Tell stories that are relatable to your audience. Think about who your audience is and post for them or if you’re unsure who is actually looking at your page, think about your ideal customer and post for them or, post for yourself! Write the captions like you are talking to your subconscious or your younger / older self, whatever feels natural to you.

I had a graphic design client I worked with who was starting a wellness blog. She had this idea in her head of what she wanted to do and then the more wellness pages she followed, the less clear her idea became in her head. She had lost her driving force because she started comparing herself to others. I sat her down and asked her to tell me why she was doing her blog. She started off a little confused and then eventually told this long winded story about her old work colleague who was still in the game, 60 years old, over weight, unhappy, etc , etc. As soon as she finished I said you know who this blogs for, this blog is for Stacey and all the other thousands of people in Stacey’s position. Think of her and write every caption as an open letter to her. She didn’t need to compete with yummy mummy’s and 20 somethings in bikinis all blogging about wellness - she had her own journey to share. 

Posting about art is similar. There are so many artist you could compare yourself with and not only lose where you are on your journey, but accidentally lose your own signature style. We definitely believe in using inspiration to grow but make sure you stop every now and then and ask yourself why you are doing what your doing. Go back and stick to that! 

Reflection.

Writing and researching this blog post has changed my attitude towards Instagram as well. Even I feel the pressure to have perfectly staged images of our artworks but I will change my attitude and change our feed. It’s surely got to be easier posting when it’s ok not to be perfect!