29 Comments
Feb 1Liked by Nino van Vuuren

Thank you, Nino for sharing your personal dilemma. You are a terrific artist and writer, as well. What a decision you have had to make! It sounds like you have made a supreme effort to stick with your situation, and I congratulate you for your courage and your standards. I’m thankful that, now, we know how to contact you. I’m glad that you have friends nearby who support you and those of us across the miles!!!!! I have lost m y glasses and am using dime store readers so , hopefully, this makes sense.

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Thank you for the kind words, Charlotte! Yes, it all makes sense. I am so grateful for all the support that I get from this substack community.

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Feb 2Liked by Nino van Vuuren

Thank you Nino for sharing the real thing. I've been using IG for a couple of years now and sometimes it is very overwhelming. I've met some artists friends there and that is the most amazing thing about it, besides that i can't understand the algorithm and i don't expect much of it, i am taking it slow.

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It can be surprisingly overwhelming. It’s easy to start to feel like you have to produce at the same level of all the artists on there combined and become discouraged. Taking it slow is definitely the smart thing to do.

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Feb 1Liked by Nino van Vuuren

I came back to say that this is my personal short experience on instagram and not a judgement of you. In fact I absolutely see that artists trying to make a living spend an awful lot of time making content and reels which do help people like me but don't make them any money.

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No offence taken. Yes, I hear what you are saying. When artists make tutorials on youtube, they can at least get a small cut from the add revenue, but on instagram all the effort is essentially for free, and all the add revenue goes straight to instagram.

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Apr 16Liked by Nino van Vuuren

Thank you for starting an account on substack. No algorithms or commercials. Very pleasant.

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Thank you Frieda! And thank you for reading!

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Thank you for this! I'm also considering just giving up on instagram. Maybe I've given up already. I just don't have it in me to battle the algorithm all day long. I post all my drawings there but more to be able to look back on my artistic journey than to try to attract new followers or anything like that. It's just way too much work and you have to keep running to stay still. And then there is little time left to do any art.

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It gets kind of pointless when it starts to stop you from making art, right?!

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Thank you for sharing this. I can absolutely relate. I feel so burnt out with the social media circus. I love meeting new people and seeing their lives but the cost is so much and I'm tired of paying it. I might start a plan to do exactly what you did.

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I have met a some great people in real life thanks instagram, but that was the instagram from 5 to 7 years ago. Nowadays, however, not even my best friends and family see my posts. It has definitely lost the ‘social’ aspect of it, it is now just ‘media’.

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Thanks for sharing Nino...I can so relate to this! You’ve described perfectly how I’ve been feeling about Instagram ever since my first account was hacked and deleted and my IP address blacklisted for no reason. A friend created my latest account but this time around I’ve not enjoyed being on it but have listened to others who say I need to be on it😏. You’ve made me think more seriously about saying farewell to it.

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That’s the thing, right? I have hated “having” to use instagram these last few years. I just don’t find any enjoyment in it. If it had a positive effect on my art it would have been a different story and I might have just made peace with it, but it hasn’t.

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Thank you for sharing your experience. I appreciate the link to the TEDtalk, too. I've taken several "sabbaticals" from social media but this year, in particular, I'm off it entirely -- apart from substack -- and trying to get all of my "digital life" reined in while letting my creative life flourish more and more.

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It can take a lot of discipline, but it is so worth it when it means that you can get your creativity flourishing again. Go for it!

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Feb 7Liked by Nino van Vuuren

This is an interesting and well-respected perspective on Instagram and social media in general.

It is clear that one needs to have a strong, focused and thoroughly-executed social media strategy, otherwise you become social media's strategy.

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I think we (as in our attention) is already social media’s strategy, no getting around that any more.

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Feb 2Liked by Nino van Vuuren

Thank you for this thoughtful post, Nino. Not raw at all :)

I'd be interested in reading in a few months time how you feel about using this platform, Substack. As this is a space where you take more time writing, expanding on it. It seems to generate more comments and interactions (raises her hand) as well. Your 'content' may be less of a commodity, here. We as readers may be responding on a different level as the reading is asking more of us, unlike scrollable photos and art. I'm thinking of the old (20th century) communications aphorism 'the medium is the message'. Still true, but sometimes we forget, as the socials are so good at making us :)

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Thanks for the kind words, Laura!

It’s been almost a year of me writing here, and I definitely already have some thoughts, and things that I have noticed. So that post will definitely be coming out sometime this year.

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Feb 1Liked by Nino van Vuuren

Thanks for taking the time to write this Nino. I only started using instagram last year (I've never felt the need to be cutting edge) when I started a daily sketchbook practice. I found you through substack though😘

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I am glad that your experience has been so positive thus far.

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I can fall down a rabbit hole watching artists’ reels on Instagram (some of which are techniques/ media that I know I’ll ever try). Hard to imagine that these really result in revenue or sales for the artist.

I also have tried posting my own art on IG through various different accounts. My daughter and my friends always “like” them 😀 but otherwise I get very little response, and then I wonder why- is my work bad? Or is it my hashtags?

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One can definitely not trust the ‘likes’ on instagram to tell you whether your art is good or not. I have a completely different reaction to exactly the same art here on substack.

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Wonderfully written, thank you! I’m slowly stepping away from Insta too, all those ads! 😒

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Last time I was on there every third post was an add if I remember correctly. I remember watching TV in the days before streaming services - when the adds came on we all raced to the kitchen for a snack or to the bathroom as fast as we could to be back in time before the show came on again. Now we can’t escape the adds any more.

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Feb 20Liked by Nino van Vuuren

How good was the TV snack run... adrenaline supreme!

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Blessings on you Nino. I am grateful that I found my way to you, it wasn’t Instagram by the way.

The disappointing social media experience and all that entails that you relate is not exclusive to creative pursuits, sadly, but I think the common denominator to it all is passionate pursuits.

My journey has been wild beyond my dreams, excruciating beautiful and equally as painful and everything in between.

I came to art as the only way powerful enough to deal with that journey.

You inspire me and you have helped anchor me in rough waters.

That’s pretty f’in amazing and I thank you for that and so much more.

I don’t think you realize how amazing you are.

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Thank you for the kind words! I hope that art continues to help you on your journey.

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