Photog: Canon Dropped Me Because I Don’t Have 50K Instagram Followers

How much does having an Instagram following matter in the commercial photography industry? It may sometimes be way more important than you may think. Photographer Yvette Roman says she lost a job shooting an ad campaign for Canon because she didn’t have 50,000 followers on Instagram.

Roman recently sat down for an interview with the online entrepreneur education platform The Futur to talk about making it as a professional photographer in today’s world. At 17.5 minutes in, she shares a story of losing out on the biggest job of her career.

Let’s talk about followers and followers mattering. I’ll tell you that I booked a huge job — it would have been the biggest job of my career, commercially. I’ll just say it: with Canon. To shoot an ad campaign for them. I got the job, it was amazing. And then literally 20 minutes later, after I had already started making calls to start booking a crew because it was coming real fast, they called me and said, “Oh my God, we can’t hire you.”

And I said, “Why?”

And they said, “Because you don’t have 50,000 followers on Instagram.”

Roman, who currently around 1,000 Instagram followers, was understandably confused, as she had originally been told that her work and style would be perfect for this job. But she was informed that this was an HR decision rather than a creative decision.

“At first, I thought, ‘Okay, I’m giving up, that’s it, I’m done,'” Roman says. “I never want to see a camera again. That’s it.”

But Roman is now seeing this experience as a wake-up call to adapt.

“I realized that with this next iteration of my career […] I have to be able to work that out.”

(via The Futur via Fstoppers)