By Regina Connell.
Ah, Pinterest. Among the cognoscenti, it is the mostly deeply uncool of the social mediums. Instagram is way hipper (and I’m sure there’s something way hipper than Instagram). Images are uncredited. It’s mindless visual and cultural consumption. It’s vapid. It’s (oh no) commercial.
And yet, my guilty little secret: I love it.
I don’t spend a ton of time on it, but I find it lovely, soothing, delightful. I don’t use it to promote anything. I don’t use it to plan anything. I don’t use it to shop for anything. I use it as therapy.
I do, from time to time, discover people to profile here or elsewhere, which is a wonderful thing. Many of these are people who are simply talented, who don’t have publicists, and don’t work to get themselves into the big magazines. Yes, there are lots of exceptions of course, but there’s still a sense of discovery that you don’t always get elsewhere.
See something beautiful, click, and it’s somehow in your world. The effect is a little hypnotic: I find myself flowing through images, creating boards. I use it to soothe me, the way some people use computer games to soothe them. I’m not entirely sure how it works psychologically, but I find that it stops my craving to go shopping. At the end of a session: I don’t feel guilty, or frazzled, or jittery, as I do after some other online experiences. I feel delight. The world feels more luxuriant, more wide open.
I like the serendipity. I find it wonder-full and miraculous that there is so much beauty in the world. And I also love that I’m sharing an aesthetic sensibility with a community of people whose pieces I repin and who repin mine.
Yes, it is a bit of a drug, an opiate. But it makes me happy and gives me lots of pleasure, a shot of inspiration I can have whenever I want it. However uncool it may be.