I don’t know about the rest of you, but I’m slightly obsessed with the rankings (as in: number of hearts) of my projects on Ravelry. I like to see where my project stands in relation to other projects made for the same pattern (don’t you love the advanced project search option?), as well as where my projects stand in relation to each other (my projects page is set to order projects according to number of favourites).
Obviously, there’s a bit of a competitive streak in that, and I won’t deny it makes me proud to see a project of mine, say, among the top 25 of more than a thousand projects from the same pattern (I think that’s happened once so far, and I’m still over the moon). And we all like to get confirmation from others that we’ve done a good job and that we’ve made something other people like.
But here’s what I’ve been noticing. Looking at my projects page, my four most popular projects by far are not necessarily my best, or most complex, or prettiest, or whatever else projects. They are the projects with the best photos. (Notably, I had semi-professionals do the photography for the four I am talking about.) Which made me think – is it knitterly skill, talent for combining colours, inovativeness in modifying designs… or good photography that we reward when choosing our favourites on Ravelry?
Obviously, sometimes it’s hard to tell if the project involved skill, talent and inovativeness if the photograph itself isn’t good enough to show it off. It’s hard to get around that fact that photographs are the best medium we have available to us at the moment to share our knitterly (I do like to use my invented words a lot, don’t I?) accomplishments. But I’ll be the first to admit that I’ve favourited a good amount of projects because they had good photos, even if the project itself was, while not “bad”, not particularly different or “better” than others.
So, I’d like to hear your thoughts on this. I’m not sure if it’s a good (encourages us to be better photographers) or bad (moves away from the actual point of sharing projects) thing, and I don’t even think it needs to be decided in favour of either of those. But, I’d like us to talk about it. :)