13 Creatives You Should Be Following on Instagram


Instagram is my all-time favorite social media app. I love being able to follow others on a simple, user-friendly interface that focuses on the visual elements that are shared. In turn, I am able to share images from my life, creative work, and pets, while interacting with a community of others. In 2017, 70% of all businesses were required to use it. Since it is so visually focused, a great deal of my time spent on the app is browsing my feed and becoming inspired by the content creators.

Why is this a top 13 instead of a top 10? Well, 13 is considered by many superstitious folk to be unlucky, but I like to break the rules and call it lucky. I also follow over 800 accounts on Instagram and figuring out ten favorites seemed very limiting. What’s three more?

  1. @annstreetstudio: I’ve been following photographer Jamie Beck and her stunning work ever since her Tumblr days under title: “From Me To You.” She and her husband invented cinemagraphs, and for the last year they’ve been living in Provence where Jamie has created some soft, conceptual fine art photography. She takes you behind the scenes in extremely detailed Instagram stories that show how she conceptualizes and composes images with an active eye for detail. She also occasionally offers excellent photography tutorials as well.

  2. @brookeshaden: Brooke is also a fine-art photographer, but her work relies on a lot of composite creation in Photoshop in order to tell the story from the dark, yet beautiful, world she has created. If you ever have time, please find her behind the scenes photoshop tutorials. She has been featured on Adobe CC and Photoshop's channels, and even had a special episode of the Framed show in 2011.

  3. @emilleah: Emilia Puentes is a former colleague and friend, and since she left the agency we both used to work at she has been traveling the world with her husband. She is a talented designer and photographer whose work is centered around travel and has a tip or two to share. Little known fact, she is also quite the cook. I’m excited to see where her globetrotting days and creativity will take her as she and her husband settle into a more permanent “home” on their next chapter of life’s journey together. Be sure to follow her photography account, @35mmphotography as well!

  4. @angelhawari: Angel Hawari is based in Minneapolis and is a member of the Singular Fortean Society’s Paranormal Art Portal. Angel creates whimsical, colorful, imaginative art of the second-dimension through painting, drawing, watercoloring, and whatever she can get her hands on. Subjects range from unicorns to unique creatures of our world to beings of a paranormal nature. This woman simply loves to create, and be sure to follow her bright spectrum of incredible, original work.

  5. @phantasphoto: Corey Schjoth is a friend and a Singular Fortean Paranormal Art Portal artist and blogger. He photographs abandoned and haunted places through infrared technology. Through this style, he not only tells stories of these eerie places, but he expresses his ideas and thoughts about these locations through spooky, black and white imagery.

  6. @sophiegamand: This NYC Photographer has been taking pictures of pit bulls in shelters wearing flower crowns to better their chances of getting adopted. They are soft, stunning images that help deliver a message about breed discrimination. For the record, she has been crowning pit bulls before Snapchat (and she’s quite proud of that).

  7. @driftingphoto: I don’t know this photographer personally, but Daniel Kouba is from Madison like myself and takes stunning nature photos, down to every detail and movement. If there was a master of falling leaf photography, Daniel would own that title.

  8. @facethefoliage: This is an open collaborative, creative project by Justina Blakeney consisting of portraits made from leaves and flowers. Justina of course was the leader of this style of work, but you can submit your own by tagging your image with #FaceTheFoliage.

  9. @rachelryle: If you love drawing and paper stop motion animation, this account will provide you with plenty of inspiration. Rachel Ryle is a talented illustrator and animator whose work has been commissioned by The Ellen Show, Starbucks, Target, LeCreuset, Barbie, and more.

  10. @eleanormcnair: Eleanor McNair is an artist who recreates famous photographs rendered in Play-Doh. She is represented by Atlas Gallery (London), Kleinschmidt Gallery (Germany), and Kopeikin Gallery (Los Angeles) and has been a judge for the GettyImages Instagram Grant competition. Her work is highly innovative, playful, smart, and unlike anything out there.

  11. @endeavorsofego: I’m sure that Sydney who is the human behind this account would say that it is her dog’s account, but by all means this is a gallery of gorgeous photographs. She has only been photographing for a year, but her images would suggest otherwise if you didn’t know any better. She is an amazing talent, and her border collie is of course, adorable.

  12. @abstractsunday: This is the instagram of New Yorker illustrator, Christoph Niemann. His combinations of everyday objects and imagery result in very clever, tongue in cheek interactions between the object and his composition. His work inspires your mind to think a little harder and see solutions in your everyday environment.

  13. @hollytheillustrator: Holly Walsh is an artist currently interning at Havas London. Her drawings are of a unique style that is all her own--playful, rough, simplistic, whimsical, and a bit strange. Yet, many of her images are of our familiar existence and can include social commentary.

Instagram has millions upon millions of users, and this is just a microscopic sampling of what amazing creatives are out there using the app and connecting with their audience. You can learn about the strategy your “IG Heroes” are using and apply their ideas to curate your own content grid. In following many of my “Heroes” for a long time, I also admire their evolution and journey--their work grows, changes, and adjusts as all our lives do. I enjoy looking back at their grids and that of my own to see where it all began and where we are now. This visual archive of my life and creativity is ongoing, and this platform is the perfect place to center myself in the social media atmosphere.


The Girl in the Unicorn Pajamas

CreativeEmily WaylandComment