I am an amateur photographer of buildings, locations, and railroad related subjects. Actually, amateur is an overstatement, I am more accurately a hobbyist. I have a point and shoot digital camera, sometimes I don’t pay attention to when the sun back-lights the subject, and I take way too many photographs. I have a habit of walking around a building and saying, “Hey, that’s a good picture. [snap, walk two steps] Oh, even better, the tree is out of the way! [snap, walk two steps] Oh, even better! [snap].”
I could save megabytes by walking around a little, framing the photo and then taking the best picture.
I painstakingly catalog all of my photos so I can quickly find all of the photos for a particular building and see how it evolves over time. New coat of paint, false front removed, building demolished, etc. After they are cataloged I upload them to my railroad and historical photo gallery.
I recently came to the realization that I should increase my search relevance and begin networking with other train and building photograph enthusiasts that were using social photo-sharing services.
At first I was partial to Google’s Picasa as I have Google books, YouTube, and Maps already hooked up to my account. Also, since my photos are of locations, it would be nice to map them through a service like Google’s Panoramio which is separate but allows imports from Picasa. However, I’ve noticed that photo contests I am interested in (if I were to ever submit) are usually run through Flickr. For Flickr though, I’d have to create a Yahoo account, which I don’t think I am ready for as I have so many other accounts.
It would appear, all things being equal and to cover all bases, that I could start accounts on all three sites. I could upload all photos to my regular all-inclusive bin on RRPICS. Then I can choose the best ones to place on Flickr and Picasa. Finally, export a few over to Panoramio.
That is a lot of work, I’m having a hard time keeping up with cataloging all my pics to begin with, and now I am adding three more uploads to the work-flow?
Just like what I should do to limit the number of photos I take, I stepped back and framed the problem–the real problem–before I proceeded.
My audience isn’t the entire photo-sharing community. My audience is those interested in photos of historical buildings and locations. Also, Picasa and Flickr organize by albums. I already have a site organized in albums; what I really need is a map. Picasa and Flickr are just an easy answer for a problem I don’t have.
The audience I am serving doesn’t say, “Let’s see what’s on the photo-sharing site today.” Unless they follow me out of pure fandom, they go to the search box intending to perform research on a location which will ultimately lead them to pictures or a map. Panoramio does this perfectly. If they see my pictures of Fremont and want to subscribe to my new pictures, then I’m building my fan base and receive the exact same result as using Picasa or Flickr.
This doesn’t mean I won’t eventually add Picasa or Flickr–what about those photo contests? Well, I’m still a hobbyist, not even an amateur so this is an EVENTUAL problem, not one I am having right now. I’ll add a solution to that problem later… when it becomes a problem I have. For now I’m going with Panoramio and you should be able to find me at www.panoramio.com/user/chadkluck.