The Flickr Explore page is still really amazing

15 Minutes in the Morning:

The upsides are many. Lots of wondrous shots from places I’ve never heard of. Lots of “how’d they even get that shot?!” photos of animals. Despite that I don’t use the site like I used to (and none of my friends do either), Flickr is a worldwide phenomena and still a place where very good photographers share their best works. And the Explore page changes every single day, replaced by another several dozen amazing new photos.

I tell all my students to check out the photographs on Flickr’s Explore page, either to see how others shot the same thing or to use it as a way to train their eye for composition and other elements.

  • I’ve been a Flickr Pro member since 2004. I agree, Flickr is an incredible social network, photo sharing site, photo browsing site, window on the world, and more.

    Flickr’s Explore algorithm, however, is not what’s great about Flickr. Many of the images that make Explore look over cooked to me: high saturation, contrast, and sharpness. I wrote about the affect Explore can have on personal creativity in the early days of Flickr:

    I’ve had dozens of images on Explore, my feelings about it are not sour grapes, they’re from years of seeing the kinds of images that have become popular on Flickr.

    But, one can still enjoy Flickr without ever visiting the Explore page and for me it remains a great resource. I’ve made dozens of good friends from all over the world on Flickr, some of whom I’ve visted and have visited me.

    I’ve never left, I still post there, participate in groups, have an active contact network, and embed both my photography and others’ on my wordpress blog. I track my contacts and gruops I’m interested in via RSS and have been for over ten years. Those feeds remain some of the most interesting nuggets in my newsreader. I would be very sad if Flickr died as the alternatives are no where near as good.