My boyfriend is an instant gratification kindda guy. Um … that’s not what I mean.
He likes to get things done quickly. Again … not what I mean.
O.K. Let me try to explain this better. My boyfriend is the kind of guy who when he’s eating dinner, eats his favourite thing first. I on the other hand, am the kind of person who eats my favourite thing last. We’re different that way.
So when it came to mastering Photoshop, I’m the one who’s most likely to spend hours and hours trying to figure it out. I’m the one most likely to refuse to eat, pee or rest until I figure it out. I’m the one who is most likely to suffer a nervous breakdown and end up on medication in a looney bin, licking the walls … from trying to figure out Photoshop.
He on the other hand – discovered Instagr.am.
It’s an iPhone app that takes a boring old picture and allows you to apply a variety of filters to make it look like you’ve been Photoshopping for years. Only the app does it in about 2 seconds. And you don’t need to take a class. If you’re the type who eats your favourite thing first … Instagr.am is for you!
If you haven’t discovered it yet, I have to tell you it’s insanely fun. If you don’t have an iPhone, no problem. It’s just as fun to look at the pictures, which you don’t need an iPhone to do. More on that later.
You just take a picture, or choose one from your library and apply one of the several filters Instagram offers. For free, might I add.
Your photos can go from this:
You get the picture. AHAHHAHAHAHAH!
Earlier this year, Instagram also added a tilt/shift feature. Tilt/shift is an action that allows you to keep one (usually linear) feature in sharp focus, while blurring the rest of the photograph. The end result is a photo that almost looks fake – like a miniature set. This isn’t the best example, but it’ll give you an idea …
Notice Instagram turns your normal, rectangular sized photo into a square one. It always does this, so when you’re composing a shot keep it in mind. The top and or bottom of your photo will need to be cropped.
The only problem with Instagram is the fact that they don’t have a website. Seriously. They have a webpage that tells you they exist, but that’s where it ends. There is no way to look at yours or anyone else’s photos online through Instagram unless they happen to share it with you through an email or Twitter. Luckily a few fine folks have realized this is a problem, and they’ve third partied their way to a solution.
I personaly use Gramfeed to view the Instagram photos online. Just go to the page, sign in and away you go. It’s very intuitive.
This for instance is my boyfriend’s Instagram photo library from Gramfeed. From there you can follow him, like his photos or comment on them. (I’m just using the fella’s feed as an example … obviously you can do this with anyone’s photos) If you’d like to find all the Instagram photos from Grace Bonney of Design Sponge for instance, just go to the home page and search for Design Sponge. Sometimes you have to fiddle around when searching. For instance, Design Sponge is spelled out as one word. If you search it as two words, you won’t find it. The same is true for my site, The Art of Doing Stuff. To find it, you must search for it as one word, with no spaces (theartofdoingstuff). I have all of about 6 photos by the way.
Another useful Instagram viewing took is Instafeed. It isn’t quite as user friendly or have as many options in terms of following users as Gramfeed, but it does have one advantage. With Instafeed you can see what filter someone used on their photo. So if you want to recreate a certain look you see, you know right away what filter to use.
The one thing you need to keep in mind when using Instagram is the fact that people can and WILL look at your pictures. Do not think of it as your own personal, fun camera. It is not. Once you take a picture with Instagram and save it, it will be in the Instagram library for all to see. So if one drunk night you think it would be hilarious to apply the “1977” filter to a certain naked body part … DON’T.
Because there’s more than one way to end up in the looney bin.