Wednesday, August 07, 2013

Instagram Retrograms: If IG'd then, what IG now

Welcome to my Instagram Travel Thursday (#IGTravelThursday) debut!

Stand Up Paddling on the Yangtze River, old style (iphone3, 2009)

Admittedly, I arrived late to the Instagram party - I only started using my IG account this year, in January 2013. When I did, I discovered I had somehow set up an account and taken one picture by phone and posted it to Instagram back in September 2011, from a cruiseship in the mid-Atlantic, by satellite.

I don't think I had a clue what I was doing then, but apparently it got some likes, and when I decided to actively use my Instagram account this year, I discovered I already had over 100 (legitimate!) followers (twitter peer pressure)...and only one photo posted! With an audience already waiting, and with the Instagram "rights grab" issue being not such an issue after all, it was time to join the party.

I began with a "Best of 2012" series (#bestof2012), in which I shared the highlights of my 2012 travels still archived on my phone, basically flooding anyone's feed following me for that first week of this year. Sorry, I had a lot of catching up to do, having traveled to India, Colorado (winter and summer), Morocco, Florida, the Bahamas, Russia, UK, France, Kenya, Namibia, South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe, and the Galapagos Islands all in one year. I thank those of you who stuck it through and are still following me now, and I appreciate the kind and encouraging comments.

I was also late to the iphone party, my first was the iphone3 which I got in mid-2009. As I thought about what to share for this, my first Instagram-themed post, I decided to open up the old backed up archives and take a look at my earliest iphone photos from 2009. What would they have looked like on Instagram?

Rather than flood my IG feed which is active enough with current travels (and surf, family, dogs), I'm starting a mini-series here on my blog, to give those old iphone travel photos their 5 minutes of, well, being seen somewhere other than on my phone or hard drive.

So here's what June thru December 2009 looked like by iphone, instagramized with square crops (hey, it's a real word, some dude in Nigeria used it in a blog so I'm going with it).

Alaska/Canada - August 2009 - a family trip, with just a few fun iphone shots.

Wooing Elk at Denali National Park, Alaska

Sunny day in Ketchikan, Alaska
Rock Climbing and Rapelling in Skagway, Alaska

Huskie pup kiss, Juneau, Alaska
Fort building on Tofino Beach, British Columbia

Asia - September/October 2009 -  I was away for 6 weeks, 2 jobs back to back from Nepal to China.

Stop over in Bangkok
A first selfie attempt in Nepal

I didn't take a whole lot with the iphone in Nepal because I was working with my Canon SLR 5DM2:

On location in Kathmandu, filming a documentary series
If you want to see the final videos, I shared them here in this post: Listening with the Lens.

Then I was off to China to escort a group of VIP guests on a luxury tour. I use a local phone in China (and just about everywhere I travel), so I only thought to use the iphone very occasionally. And it's a good thing, as I clearly had not yet mastered the art of the "selfie" - in my defense, remember, this was before the phones had front-facing cameras. The best option was still to hand the phone to someone else.

Hosting Dinner at the St. Regis, Beijing
An absolute *fail* selfie at the Great Wall

Asking before taking pic in Daxu, China
With my darling friend/guide June in Hong Kong

Costa Rica - November 2009 - another family trip, with most of the time spent in the water. But even then I had a dry case for my iphone and wasn't afraid to (let my husband) use it.

Surfing the warm waters of Tamarindo
Flight delay from San Jose? No problemo!

Walt Disney World, Florida - December 2009

From the terrace at Kidani Village
Anandapur in Animal Kingdom

Back to the Future at Epcot
This symbol began to appear in flight!

As anyone who follows my Instagram now knows, between travels, I share whatever I find entertaining, and usually this involves kids, dogs, and surfing.  Thus, this post would not be complete if I didn't also include some here.

Kids & dogs:

Cute cousins at the SD Zoo
Composing cousins taking a break

Dog Beach, Del Mar (Jambo)
Dog Beach, Del Mar (Java)

As for surf? Well, 2009 ended with a huge winter swell, and after watching this guy make his way back in with only half his board....

A literal winter surf break at Point Loma (Dolphin Tanks), San Diego, CA
I headed to the OB Pier where high surf puts on a great show as the pier shakes!

Winter swell crashes along the Ocean Beach Pier, San Diego, CA

Had the fancy newly-introduced instagram video option been available then, I'd have shared this so you could also experience the waves up close and personal:

So, now you've made it through my first Instagram Retrograms post. You have your choice of #IGTravelThursday hosts to blame (or credit) for this nostalgic mini-series I'm now blogging, and each week I'll link to a different host. The fun is in checking out all the other links you'll find there too. This week I'm going with the place where the whole IGTravelThursday was born, Katja Presnal's Skimbaco Travel.

BONUS! If you're on instagram, you are likely also familiar with the hashtag #tbt, which means "Throwback Thursday",  in which you instagramize an old photo (at least 5 years old), ideally, taking a picture with your phone of an old print to share it on instagram with the #tbt hashtag. So yeah, it's nostalgic, which means I'm all over it too, and every week I'll share a #throwbackthursday / #tbt photo on instagram too. Instagram, travel, and nostalgia...could Thursdays possibly get any more fun?

Don't worry, I'm traveling again in a couple of weeks and still have tons of recent travel stuff to share. Thanks for reading and stay tuned!


  1. Thank you so much for joining us! I love your first post and can't wait to see more! What I loved about your iPhotos was the candid shots, and the "I need to get that now" shots when you didn't have time to get the camera. Or the "let someone else take the shot" pictures because handing over a phone is easier than handing over the camera. iPhone-photography itself gives a whole new meaning and a storytelling aspect I think. And like the wifi-sign on planes - you probably would have never thought of taking it with a camera, but now in retrospect it gives such a cool memory lane feeling when I too remember how exciting it was when that sign started appearing on planes.

    1. Thank you Katja :) You're exactly right about that airplane wi-fi sign, I would not have taken it with my SLR. Same goes for many of the "selfies", which I use for FB profile or to share with family, but would never want/need a hi-res. It's made such a difference having a phone for the non-serious work so I can continue to focus on my "real" SLR photography without having to edit thru the silly stuff! Sorry I'll miss you at TBEX in Dublin, but keep an eye on my IG feed as I'll be on assignment in Bhutan! Thanks for your comment!

  2. I loved your story, and what amazing places you go to. I think you've just inspired me to dig out my really old phone to see if I have any decent old memories there for #tbt! I look forward to seeing your future travel IGs travel stories. Btw, I absolutely loved the first one from China where you were paddling the boat in Yangze!

    1. Thanks for stopping by Reeta! Glad I've inspired you on some level! You might also enjoy this humorous older post where I theorize that SUP actually began in China I should have included that Yangtze shot, lol!

  3. Welcome to Instagram Travel Thurday!! :) And nope, you are not such a late-comer to the iphone party, I got my first iPhone (or any smart phone to be honest) a year ago!

    You have definitely traveled around, I look forward to more!

    1. Thanks for visiting, Satu! Hope my posts and travels will continue to keep your interest for #IGTravelThursday!

  4. It is such a pleasure to meet you, and connect with you. I'm so glad you joined us for #IGTravelThursday. You have had some amazing travels. I look forward to seeming more.

    1. Thank you Leigh! I'm glad to have foudn yet another outlet and use for those phone photos!

  5. Welcome other can always pull photos from your photo stream and IG them from there. That's how surfers get those crazy shots with their GoPro on to the IG feed. And I KNOW you have some mad surfing skillz.

    Looking forward to watching your feed, I love your photos and everything you do.

    1. Hi Kim-Ree (with the silent syllable)! Oh I'm so on that GOPRO stuff already, did you not notice my IG profile pic to start with? There's another fun app called EdgeUnite which is for total GoPro junkies - skiers, surfers, BMX, all that. Loved your snarky IG post by the way, you named exactly all the reasons I stayed away so long. Thanks for the love :)

  6. I too joined Instagram in Jan. I thought I was the only one left behind... I am already looking forward to your throw back photos!

    1. Careful what you wish for....bwahaha! re: throwback photos. My 11-yo daughter has alraedy veto'd several I wanted to share. She says of my choice 80's shots "sure mom, if you want to lose followers real fast"! Lol!

  7. Love this series of history through glad that you are sharing your adventuress on IG!

  8. That's amazing you are also in so many of the beautiful photos. That's often something I struggle with. Great walk through your experiences.

    1. That's what the rear-facing camera is for! Ya gotta do it! Thanks for visiting :)

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