Wednesday, March 28, 2012

The Art of Pinterest ...

When I first wrote about my growing obsession with Pinterest, I thought that the act of writing would change the dynamic. And, it did. But, it took a while for the changes to take.

Since I discovered it in late January, I've curated my Pinterest boards as though they were bookshelves in my office, visible for everyone to see. And, of course, I think that people will look at a board where you have collected this amazing set of images and think, "Wow! I like what this person sees!"

Of course, that's NOT how it happens. I know that, silly!

I don't think I'm "addicted" anymore, though. Oh, I still go there. But, not every day.

Now that I've established my presence there, I don't feel the need to create my presence. It's done. And, that may very well be the driving force for me over on Pinterest: the need to create something.

Along the way, I've come to recognize why I like Pinterest so much. I went through this same process with Flickr, Facebook and tumblr ... I was obsessed to learn how it works, what I can do with it and where it goes for me as a creative spirit. Once I figured that out, the obsession seemed to dissipate.  

Today, I use Pinterest to collect things all in one place where I can go back and enjoy them again ... and where I can add to them over time.  Much like my Barbie room at home!  It has evolved into a real creative outlet for me as well. Not only do I collect images, but also links to such things as galleries, crochet patterns, how-to's for arts and crafts projects, and recipes for salads. THAT is pretty cool, if you ask me!

So, here's a little sample of the collection I'm currently "curating" under my newest board "Think Green" ~

I suspect that, like Facebook and Twitter and the myriad of social networking sites available, Pinterest has the potential to be whatever we want it to be, meeting each person's need to bookmark, share and collect all sorts of things. It definitely serves a purpose that the other sites don't. So, thanks to Ben Silbermann and all the folks that run Pinterest. I'm glad you did this! I'm having a good time with it!   HAPPY SPRING!

Friday, March 9, 2012

Pinterest ~ the learning curve

I last posted about my newest "addiction" to Pinterest and, since then, I have forced myself to limit the amount of time I spend on the site. It's really difficult, though. I see the e-mail messages in my "in box" and am drawn to see who is re-pinning from my boards. Then, I visit their boards and, BOOM!  I'm off pinning again.   {{big sigh}}

For me, pinning has been all about collecting. There. I said it. I am a "collector." I collect fashion dolls in real life. I have an entire room dedicated to them. I created an exhibition of fashion dolls last summer at a local museum and, if you're on Facebook, you can see some of what we did here. I also collect ephemera, which I think stems from my love for the written word. But, back to my collections ... my "boards" on Pinterest.

In the beginning, it was all about the "eye candy." So many beautiful images and I could put them all in one place and revisit them anytime I wanted. "So, what!" you might say. "What good does that do a person?" And, you would be right. For someone like me, pinning images has no socially redeeming value whatsoever. Except, it allows me to organize what I like, and that's important to me!

Prior to joining Pinterest, I collected images from the Internet on my computer. If I saw something I  liked, it was as easy as a right-click and "save image as." I have folders titled "Pink" and "Blue" and "Type and Art" and they are full of things I've seen, liked and wanted to return to without having to, again, search for them. Now, I don't have to right-click! I just pin those little babies to one of my boards and enjoy visiting them!

Yesterday, after breaking my own rule about how much time I had spent on Pinterest, I took a closer look at what I was doing. I have 19 boards and they contain 2,787 pins. And, there are 274 "LIKES," which are completely separate from my boards. Now, I'm not quite sure what the logic is behind "liking" something if you can pin it. I'm thinking it's to track those things that don't belong to one of my boards. Of course, there could be some other reason for it, but I haven't a clue what it might be.

My favorite boards at the present moment are "All Things Pink!" and "beige to white and back again." I guess I'm on a color trip here lately. But, I also like my "Type & Art, plain and simple" board a lot, too, and that board has 132 followers after just a few weeks, so I must be doing something right if people are watching what I pin.

And, that's really what it's all about, if  you ask me. People have a chance to see how I see things. Why did I include this "blue" image and not that one? What criteria do I follow for "All Things Pink?" These are the questions I ponder when I consider this addiction of mine. And, as the number of my followers grows, I find I am even more critical of my boards. I check them to be sure I haven't pinned the same image twice. If it's pinned to the "Blue" board, it must be all about that particular shade of blue; no pink background; no green or yellow anywhere. It's about pure color and how the image conveys it.

I have become aware of legal issues with Pinterest this week. I was reading on other pinners' blogs about how they use Pinterest, good etiquette on Pinterest and discussions about the impact pinning might have on artists and internet businesses and I stumbled on this. So, now I'm not sure how much longer I'll be doing this. I may have to return to the right-click, "save image as" to keep up my collection madness. We'll see.

In the meantime, happy pinning! I'm going to balance my checkbook now!