If you've ever seen my Instagram, you'd know that I'm all about a black border and a shadow. I'm really particular when it comes to my grid - my posts are permanent, planned, and meticulously created. Editing photos, in all honesty, is a hobby of mine and I truly enjoy the process.
You can say that I'm wasting my time, that Instagram is an artificial, filtered world of pretending and editing out the bad, but I don't see it that way. I feel lucky to have a virtual memory that I can access for the rest of my life, one that I can share with everyone I've ever met. I find myself constantly going back months, even years, seeing how I've changed over time and remembering those moments behind each snapshot.
There are a few powerful apps that I use on almost every single photo, each serve a very different and important purpose. Here they are:
The name really lends itself to the app. It is VERY glitchy, almost frustrating to use, but provides some pretty stunning results. I use this app to fill backgrounds (make the sky orange, add a rainbow gradient to a white background), to add color to my grid.
Phonto is how I layer photo on top of photo. It's also where I make my gradients and text graphics. Super easy to use - you just have to be resourceful. I've also found myself using a lot of 'transparent png graphics' (which you can find on Google) to layer onto some posts. You can grab a white background and format your Instagram stories on here also.
You can now turn your Live photos into a movie! I'm starting to love this more and more as I'm trying to incorporate more video's into my posts. Makes your story come to life! Other cool moving graphic apps are DSCO (the video version of VSCO) and IMGPlay (a GIF maker)!
I use this app on every single photo, mostly to create my black border. The interface is simple, it's easy to use, and offers a lot of different packages to add on. You can do anything with Afterlight. I've downloaded the "Wander" Filter pack which provides some vintage filters, dust add-ons, and film effects.
My favorite app of all time. For me, it serves as an archive of past or potential posts. I use two folders, one as a place to put every single edited picture I've ever taken (my 'potential' folder) and another to layout my Instagram grid (my 'ready to upload' folder). I am a firm believer of the grid aesthetic being more important than singular posts. All of my photos must work together in color, composition, texture, people to object ratio, etc., (say that I'm crazy, I really don't care). I believe that your collection of photos can create a story, and it's one that you can build and show to the world, as you please.
Pictures are worth a thousand words. Take a million, make them pretty and look at them over and over again. Make your story beautiful.