Monday, April 13, 2015

An Exciting New Social Media Experiment ! ! !

Last week I continued with and took more seriously (sort of) a photography (sort of) project centered around ideas of consumerism, social media culture, waste, self-awareness, and THE INTERNET. I was toying with several different things, clearly, but mostly I wanted it to be an examination of my own wastefulness and privilege. At my school, we have an incredible buffet-style dining service with great food but I don't always eat everything I ask for. Without thinking about the project, I get my food and eat normally and then photograph it for Instagram as it is when I'm finished. Sometimes I eat it all, sometimes I leave mass quantities of food to be thrown away. Michel de Certeau, in his book, The Practice of Everyday Life, highlights the impact of the individual. This project has forced me to think more about how I eat and be proactive about steering it in a healthier direction (for all).

But the really fun stuff is the social media. Look at how many people I'm connected with.

I wanted to try to be like one of the awesome spam accounts you see on Instagram. 

At one point, the app wouldn't let me follow anymore people because I followed so many so quickly. If you want to get noticed on THE WEB, you need to bombard the world with your content. And that's what I did! With the help of hashtags (social media symbols that allow users to find similar content at once) I reached a larger audience than just those already following me. 

Hopefully it will grow over time. Exponentially.

Also, you know those super annoying people that post pictures of their food or coffee with a ton of hashtags? That's another, more satirical aspect of the project in which I tried to emulate that same enthusiasm for sharing your plate and presenting it as art, but making sure the art is completely disgusting (there are exceptions). Sometimes it even unintentionally looked beautiful.

Ridley Tankersley
04/07/15 #plate1 #dinner #tacos
#tacotuesday #food #plate #art
, 2015

Jackson Pollock
Red, 1950

Ridley Tankersley
04/11/15 @sjrennick's #beets #noodles
#peas #alfredo #food #plate #art
, 2015
Kimberly Conrad
Pinkogram II, 2010

I will keep all you loyal fans updated as the project continues!

Unrelated, this FIDLAR album is very well mixed.


  1. This is really interesting. Great critique of the way privileged people deal with food. It used to make me so angry back in the dishroom when people would send back full plates of food, and after a meal when we would get all the extra food and have to literally stuff it into the disposal. And yet, I still don't often eat every single thing on my own plate. Good jorb, Ridlorf.

  2. I'm excited to see where this goes -- will you pursue the comparisons with REAL art? Will you become an activist?

  3. Back in high school I had a lot of friends who were raised under the ideals of the "Clean Plate Club" and would give me such a hard time if I didn't finish my food. This project definitely brings back those feelings of guilt. It's hard to ignore when you are actually forced to look at and process how much food you are wasting. Good luck with this project, I'm curious to see where it goes!

  4. As a (very) brief employee of Bon Appetit, I can say I greatly appreciate the vacant plates. Good work on the eating and whatnot.

  5. I really enjoyed the humor of not only the content of this project, but also the complexity and unexpected activity that followed it in your corresponding Instagram page