We often see the same photos over and over again on Instagram. Photos not only from the same locations (Iceland, the Faroe Islands, Santorini, Antelope Canyon etc) but people also copying the same compositions, the same poses, the same colours.
Just look at the Instagram account Insta Repeat to see what I am talking about. People taking virtually identical photos over and over again in a desperate attempt to get the same high number of likes they've seen the photos they've tried to copy achieve. But aren't we all bored of seeing the same photos from the same places every time we open Instagram?
The best way to stand out on Instagram then is to photograph your own area, the place where you live. Places that the majority of us probably haven't seen before.
If you can take a good photo from places around where you live, it's automatically going to stand out because it's somewhere new and different to other people. It will be far easier to get people to pause when they are scrolling through their feed, as they hopefully think 'wow that looks nice, where is that?'
There are also other advantages to photographing where you live, rather than constantly dreaming of far away and exotic places. One obvious one simply being the cost. It can be very expensive to go to the destinations we see so often on Instagram. It usually involves flights, numerous nights accommodation, paying for food etc. Photographing where you live however, might not cost you anything at all. At most it might cost you a small amount of fuel or parking.
One other big advantage then is that you can revisit these places time and time again. Go away on a holiday somewhere and you have no choice but to photograph it whatever the conditions. You might not necessarily get the results you want, it might be overcast, it might be too crowded, many things can effect the overall image you take. Photographing locally however, if you don't get the result you want first time around, you can simply keep going back until you get that perfect photo you imagined.
You can also take advantage any time the conditions are perfect. Notice that conditions are right for some mist? A possible cloud inversion? Perhaps you get a notification saying the aurora borealis is likely going to be visible tonight? (Depending where you live of course) You can quickly jump in your car and take advantage of those conditions.
Many of us take for granted the places close to where we live, instead dreaming of far away places. There are so many reasons why we should photograph closer to home though and over the past year I've been exploring my home county, all the time finding new and beautiful places, many of which I never even knew existed until I made the effort to look for them.
For more on the joys of photographing locally please watch my video below. Alternatively you can watch the video at the top of this page where I photograph the photos featured on this post.