The social side of Flickr is one of the biggest benefits of being a member. The community is massive, and so you’re sure to find a group that caters to your particular niche. There are groups for specific locations, specific cameras, specific software, specific demographics of people (old, young, male, female etc.) then some quirky ones like “Turtles for Fun”, “Fish ‘n’ Chips”, “Moustache Envy” the list goes on and on and on and on and . . .
I like the photo challenge groups because they push me to take photos regularly and often in areas I don’t normally go. There are three really good challenge groups;
52 Weeks the 2016 Edition – 2016 will be my fifth straight year doing this challenge, and I am one of the moderators of the group now. Each week one of the moderators chooses a topic and you have that week to take a shot to fit the theme. Actually the themes are optional (although most people try) – the key thing is to take a new photo every week. Some themes are very specific, some are technical, some are more artistic and some open to wider interpretation. This is a great group and if you’re in any way serious about photography you should be taking pictures every week.
116 Pictures in 2016 – Again, the fifth year for me in this group, from 112 Pictures in 2012. So it gets that little bit harder every year. For this Group the 116 themes are set by the admin team and published already to give you time to think and plan. You can take the photos in any order and there’s no limit to how many per week – 116 pictures is just over 2 per week on average. Again, some are specific, some technical, some artistic. And several are date specific – meaning you HAVE to take a picture on that day. This year there are 6 date-specific challenges, the most there’s been.
Get Pushed – This was my first challenge group although I’ve not signed up for a round for ages. There’s a new round every month and the idea is that you get paired up with someone you don’t know. You review each other’s work and challenge each other to take something that you’ve not done before – hence the push. You then have a couple of weeks to take that photo and post it in the group.
Other groups that I enjoy;
f/64 – this is a regular head to head competition group. Up to 64 people start and are put into pairs. Each person posts a photo taken during the pre-determined time frame (so you can’t go back through your whole archive). The rest of the members compare the photos of the two and vote for a winner. So 64 becomes 32. The process is repeated with 16 new pairs being drawn, posting, voting etc. until there is a winner. The standard of photography in this group is very high.
100 Strangers – if you like taking pictures of people, or if you don’t and want to challenge yourself to do more portraits, this is a great group. There’s no time limit or rules other than the photos you take must be of strangers. So you have to go up to people at random and ask to take their photo. It’s a good discipline to learn and there are some incredible portraits in the group.
Sliders Sunday – As someone who likes to play with Photoshop a bit, this is a great group for me. There are only two rules; you have to post on Sunday and your photo must have had some reasonable amount of post-processing (hence the reference to sliders).
There are other daily groups, some of which I’ve joined and others I haven’t including; “Bench Monday”, “Me Again Monday”, “Face Down Tuesday”, “Bokeh Wednesday”, “Fence Friday”, “Cliché Saturday”.
Finally Surrey Heath Snappers – a quick plug for my own local group, for photographs taken in Surrey Heath – a borough or north west Surrey in the UK.
Since you’ve now signed up for Flickr after my last post, your next task is to find some Groups to join and get involved.