There are more ways to share information today than there has been in the history of mankind. As a photographer, your options are practically limitless. You can hop on Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, Myspace, Photobucket, and plenty of others. They all allow you to upload your favorite photos and share them with your friends. So much of this is going on that it seems as though a new way to share pictures gets invented and released to the public every week. Considering this, I think it's a much more fruitful endeavor to tell you about some of my favorites instead of going over all of your options.
Flickr Is Essential. No More Questions.
If you are a photographer and you don't have a Flickr account, drop everything you are doing and sign up for one right now. Flickr is one of the most well known online photo publishing and sharing platforms available. It excels in quality, allowing you to upload your best photos at the original size and file settings from your camera. If you want to, you can allow your friends, family, or any random Internet surfer to view, download, and print any of your full size photos.
There is another benefit to having a Flickr account. Flickr is syndicated throughout the entire internet. You can easily integrate your Flickr account with your Facebook, Twitter, or your blog. That way, you won't have to go through the trouble of posting your photos to multiple social media accounts. You can simply post them to Flickr, and they will automatically appear on everything else.
Facebook For All Of Your Other Friends
Facebook is the next best way to share your photos with your friends. It's great because you don't have to tell everyone that you just put up a new set of photos. You simply upload them and they appear in your news feed. You can even tag your friends in your photos. Once you do this (it only takes a few minutes), Facebook will send an email to everyone you tagged so they can see themselves in your photos.
This is a bit of a digression, but you’ll know your friends love your photography when they consistently use your photos as their profile pictures. It’s yet another way to get more exposure as a photographer. Almost everyone has a Facebook profile these days.
There is only one downside to posting your photos on Facebook. Because so many people post tons of photos to Facebook, the site has to impose quality restrictions. The typical Facebook photo is only 600 pixels wide by 400 pixels tall with 72 dots per inch. This is a very limited resolution when you want to show off the fine details in your photos. As is always the case, you need to weigh the pros and cons of using Facebook. I like to quickly upload my photos just after a shoot so my friends know what I’ve been up to. The ones who are really interested in my photography will go look at my photos on Flickr anyway.
The Paid Alternatives
Flickr is great because it's free. However, there are a number of other places online that give you more storage and more control over your photos. They're not free, but as they allow me to upload my original full-size photo to their site, I also use them as one of my backups.
Of course, you’re going to want to print your photos as well. There are a ton options for doing this, especially if you have a Flickr account or a Mac. Those of you who have an Apple machine can use iPhoto to order all kinds of prints through your iTunes account. You can order calendars, photo books, and coffee mugs.
Flickr users can do the same with their photos. While you are viewing a photo, there is an option to purchase prints through Snapfish. Click on it, and you’ll be taken to an online store where you can order more than what is currently available through Apple’s iPhoto. Some of these options will really showcase your work. You can get a canvas print of your favorite photo, a photo skin for your laptop, a custom cutting board, and much more. The options are nearly endless for Flickr users. That’s why you need to get a Flickr account right now!
Another option is to make money from others using your photos. There are dozens of sites that help you with this as well. I go into my recommended options in my Camera Fortune series.
I haven’t even gone into all of the other ways to share your photos. Apple just released the iPad, a portable device that makes photo presentations extremely easy. You just hand it over to your friends, and they can swipe their fingers across your pictures to browse through them. It’s just like giving them a printed photo album.
What is your favorite photo sharing method? If you have a new one, I’d love to know about it. I’m continually amazed by all of the options photographers have these days.
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