One of the biggest frustrations as a photographer in trying to take advantage of Instagram has long been the inability to upload images to the service directly from your computer. Instead, one has had to make use of apps like Later, Hootsuite, or Schedugram in order to get images from the computer to the social network through a process that is way more complicated than it should be.
But that could all soon be a thing of the past, as a new Lightroom plugin has become available that allows photographers to post images to the network directly from their computer. All without convoluted processes for saving the image to a service, only to be notified to manually post it later from your phone. No, none of that is required, you simply use it like any other Publish service in Lightroom.
The plugin is called LR/Instagram, and it’s completely free to download and try out(though there is a $10 registration fee for those who want to help support the project). I downloaded it myself today and it works exactly as advertised. It was the simplest computer->Instagram posting process I have ever used, and the fact that it was from within Lightroom makes it even better.
Now, if you use the scheduling features of other apps then you may still want to go with those, as this LR/Instagram plugin does not support scheduling at this time. But if you are able to keep on a schedule yourself, posting manually from Lightroom is so easy, taking a couple minutes a day to post is simple.
The setup is simple too, after installing the plugin (the same way you do with any other Lightroom plugin) you simply enter your Instagram credentials and you are good to go. You can even use the plugin to upload to multiple Instagram accounts, so those of you managing several brands across different accounts can make use of this too.
Overall, it seems to be the solution that so many of us have been longing for, but it’s not perfect. Adding the ability to schedule publishing, and post hashtags to the first comment would be great (though there may be some limitations with it being a LR Plugin that prevent those features).
You can find the plugin over on their website, here. It is compatible with Mac and Windows systems and will work with any Lightroom version 3.3 or above.