Social media downgrade your creativity

If you are reading this blog, you probably already know what problems social media cause to artists and why it is important to solve them. But if not, make sure to read –
Instagram and social media are not suitable for artists.

We discussed this topic with Jason Yap on his podcast: The Background Dancer.

While designing Artunio, we took a deeper look at how social media affects creativity, creative process and artistic freedom. Here’s what we’ve found out:

The formats are restricting and not suited for you

Social networks are created for everyone and therefore for no one. The formats draw the borders of what you can create and post.

The formats of the content you can post on Instagram are basically photos or graphics, short videos in form of stories, reels, videos, and captions – short text for each format.

All formats do not have the same “value”. When you post a reel, you have better algorithm results than a photo. So, for example, if you are a photographer, you are disadvantaged. Instead of posting a photo, you should find a way to translate that into a reel.

So, for example, you can put the same photo into a 30-second video and you would have better results immediately.

Frustration of ever changing formats

The formats are not a static thing. They change constantly because Instagram has to adjust the platform to the growing competition. Reels are basically a TikTok invention.

So, for example, you create a reel that lasts 15 seconds (overall average) because you need that algorithm push. The user that sees your content, has about 15 seconds to get what you want to share. Do you think it is enough?

In most cases, after a few seconds, they swipe away and probably never see your reel again. They go and watch dozens of other reels that are, most of the time, not connected in any way. That is the lifespan of your content that Instagram wants you to create. Why?

You had your 15 seconds. But the collective amount of reels people watch daily from all other reels are counted in millions of hours. Can you hear a loud “KA-CHING!” at Instagram HQ? Or is it just me?

The preferred formats are the same for all users, and this is hugely affecting the way you think about your work and even create art.

Same rules for everybody

“Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.” (Albert Einstein)

Same as: “If you judge artists by their ability to beat the algorithm and by the numbers of their followers, they will live their whole life believing they are worthless.”

The formats are restricting, changing the way art is perceived and even changing the way you see yourself as an artist. For example, there are many photographers that started to create more vertical photos, so they would fit Instagram. Isn’t that just weird?

Do you think it does not concern you?

And it is not only affecting photographers, as many people wrongly assume. Musicians started to create short flawless 15 to 60-second short clips (after uncountable takes) to fit Instagram and get more views, exposure. Those flawless videos may be unattainable for a long period of time and are time consuming.

Some even say that they are “losing the essence of music interaction.” I am not even mentioning Instagram content creators, where attractive girls in their cosplay costumes are more important than the actual music.

What about artists and their future?

This is just the first decade of social media and we can already see the negative effects in many areas. We have to think about how it will affect future artists and future emerging artists.

They start to see this as the norm, as the status quo. They would say to themselves: “I have to do art this way, because that is how it is done, right?“

I am thankful for artists that speak about these issues. They are the foundation building stones of the change. Just like this great video from a guitarist Jack Gardiner:

Things you are proud of do not receive attention

Another thing you have to take into consideration is, and it probably happened to you many times, that you posted something you worked very hard on, and it did not get “enough” likes. You may end up thinking that your art is getting worse or that you are doing it all wrong.

And on the other hand, you might have posted something you had not expected to be successful and you might have received more exposure and followers from that. If this happens more often, you might start to want to post art content that would get more likes and shares that would make you “feel” that you are doing it right.

There is a comfort in knowing that your posts will do well.

The number of likes can therefore be defined, if the content posted is “good” or “bad” which is, of course, absolute nonsense. Skill and quality do not equate to the number of likes and exposure.

The solution lies in giving the right formats
for each artist

Artunio is creating an environment where arts have their separate formats for each field. As a painter, you do not need to post videos. Why should you?

Photos should be just enough. If you want to post a video explaining your creative process behind an art piece, or you want to share some exciting news with your community, why not? Go for it!

It does not make any sense, if you have to create videos every day because you have to. Furthermore, you will be directly motivated and rewarded by the quality of art or content you create, not the amount and consistency.


The way social media transformed how we see art and how artists see themselves, turns out to have a negative effect on artists, art and people in general.

Artists compromise their art to get exposure, create content they do not want, with restricting formats that are not suited for them. It leaves artists with a wrong assumption they made something wrong, they are not good enough since they are not as popular as other fields on social media.

There are ways to deal with this problem, for example leaving social media for good. The result of leaving are artists with less work opportunities or means to generate income.

Social media will never change in favor of artists or their well-being. They are more than happy for millions of artists creating small portions of content, that in total sums up in millions of hours. They are used every day for watching content by consumers and generate enormous profit.

The problems may seem irreversible, but there is a way to deal with it. The solution lies in a brand-new social network called Artunio Space, where all focus is on artists and people working in the artistic field. Help us create a social network for you by supporting the project and reserve one of the perks!

Help us create a social network for you by supporting the project!

Who is Artunio created for?

Artunio is created for artists, audiences and everyone working in the cultural and creative industry. The platform serves anyone ranging from performers, creators, managers to even patrons either as individuals or organizations.

Future Artunio features

Promote and manage events easily with our Event Manager

Pin your event on the Artunio map and let people in the vicinity of that location be notified that there is an event they might be interested in and directly buy tickets. Reach people interested in this type of events from greater distances.

Present and sell your art easily through Artunio Gallery

While galleries are still one of the best options, their vulnerability was shown during the pandemic with artists looking for alternative ways to show their art to collectors. Artunio Gallery is meant to connect artists, galleries, and collectors around the world.