Tuesday, June 2, 2015

How to Instagram Like a Pro

Who doesn't love looking at photos on Instagram? Instagram is the #4 most downloaded free app in the Apple Store behind Facebook and Youtube, making it one of the most popular social media apps used around the world. Why is Instagram so popular? Well, the fact that so many people use Instagram as a platform to share photographs and gain inspiration rather than "socialize" is in itself an amazing feat. When was the last time you used your Instagram app to send someone a message or view trending and popular posts? Unlike most social media apps, Instagram allows its user to travel across worlds, feast one's eyes on delicious pictures of food and view the world's most fashionable trends with just a swipe of a finger. Once you start using Instagram as the photography platform it should be, you may just see an improvement in engagement and following. Instagram is a wondrous thing and this post is going to teach you how to Instagram like a pro.

Step 1: Stick with one theme

I've gotten various compliments on my Instagram feed; some tell me that my Instagram is easy on the eyes. Others tell me that my pictures are always peaceful, natural and nice to look at. If I could label my Instagram feed with a theme, it would probably be something like, "City-life, nature and environments captured in the moment." I try not to fake a picture, use props and display items out of the ordinary to make my pictures look perfect to the eye. I like capturing things in their natural element whether they are people, objects, places or sunsets. That being said, in order to give your Instagram feed a more unified look, you need a theme. A successful Instagram account (I'm using successful here to describe Instagram accounts with a heavy following/engagement) usually has a running theme. Instagram is not necessarily about the one photo you upload, but the overall look and feel of your entire feed. Take a look at your Instagram feed and see how your images work together. What story are you trying to tell with your photos? A running theme will give your Instagram continuity and make others want to keep looking!

Step 2: Upload consistently, but not constantly
Did the Instagram police tell you that you're only allowed to upload one photo per day? No, because there is no such thing as the Instagram police. You can upload as many photos as you want, but for your own privacy and safety, be wary of oversharing. On the other hand, be sure to post enough that people do not forget about you. Your friends and followers want to know what you're up to and they follow you because they truly enjoy viewing the photos that you post.

Step 3: Filters, filters filters!
VSCOcam and other magical photo editing apps will become your best friends once you really start using Instagram as a photography platform, rather than a social media platform. Filters enhance your photos, help in creating your theme and overall make your photos look refined and professional. Don't be afraid to experiment with various editing apps to see which ones you like the most. When you start using a few filters consistently, your theme will automatically began to surface.

I hope these are helpful tips for improving your Instagram aesthetic. When you're next using Instagram, be sure to check out other feeds to see what those users are doing to be consistent. Most likely, they have a theme to their photos. Do not copy them though; tell YOUR story. After some experimenting, you will find your own theme and be able to work with it!

Good luck!