Keyser Lough (forthcoming). “Two days, twenty outfits: Coachella attendees’ visual presentation of self and experience on Instagram.” Journal of Visual Literacy.
Abstract: This study uses a visual discourse analysis to explore the self-construction of presence and experience at events such as a music festival, theoretically guided by presentation of self and how users curate this via multimodal, visual-focused social media posts. Real-time, location-based, public posts from events act as a new form of visually-embedded culture in how individuals present themselves and their experiences. An analysis of 200 location-tagged Instagram posts from attendees at the 2017 Coachella music festival reveals attendees care less about sharing photos of the music and more about curating a visual sense of taste, embrace and place. This focus on self-presentation is explored through themes such as seeing more full-body images than selfies in order to emphasize festival fashion, use of the ‘plandid’ (planned candid) to add a sense of spontaneity, and use of chronological and geographic tags to establish physical presence in time and place.