Instagram: Inspiration on Demand

By Katie Padda — November 27, 2020

Instagram can be many different things; a personal record of memories, a place to find memes, an online business, and – one of my personal favourites – an ideas board. For so many of us, Instagram is a platform to save ideas, thoughts and references – all kinds of visual inspiration that we may wish to refer back to in the future. The app has a bad rep for being an addictive place of mindless consumption, however when used in the right way I am a firm believer that an Instagram feed can truly be a place of inspiration and discovery. For these reasons, I’m thrilled that our NEWSUBSTANCE Instagram has evolved into a place we share the work that captivates us, for the further enjoyment and appreciation of others.

There is something refreshing and ‘no-nonsense’ about the directness of sharing an image – a picture truly tells a thousand words. Something I’ve found particularly interesting since taking on shared editorial control of our feed, is the way in which the platform has been embraced by so many creative individuals as the first point of call to share their work and ongoing developments. Lucas Zanotto (@lucas_zanotto) springs to mind – an artist who has described Instagram as a place where he can engage directly with his audience and create entertainment without any unnecessary barriers (his 3-D modelled digital animations are pretty cool too by the way!). Whilst you can make many arguments about the need to physically experience work from the art and design spectrum, Instagram is possibly the most accessible and frequently visited exhibition space there is. Besides, a considerable amount of artistic work in our modern world doesn’t even exist in physical form!

Following a page full of thought-provoking useful resources is great, but have you ever wondered where these accounts get their inspiration from? This is perhaps the greatest hurdle behind the scenes – finding content worth sharing. We’ve been trying to specifically share work that might have slipped your radar or mainstream media – hidden gems that we feel deserve more recognition. Something you’ll notice about our page is that we don’t limit ourselves to any particular output of work; we share all kinds of interesting, creative crossovers. For instance, just a few weeks back we shared the work of Heather Dewey-Hagborg – an artist who has 3-D printed faces using DNA from discarded artefacts in New York City, including cigarette butts and chewing gum. For me personally, these cross-disciplinary experiments are often the most fascinating of all.

Researching content to share on our feed has been a really fun process and a great way to widen my knowledge of what’s going on in the creative world – and who to keep an eye on! Taking on these responsibilities has also reminded me of just how useful a resource Instagram can be. More than just viewing works, it’s a portal into how your favourite artist thinks, what inspires them, what goes on behind the scenes and what work in progress looks like – so much more than just the polished and presented, finished work.

I’d say don’t overlook the value in checking out what other people are up to, and if you’re looking for exciting, new accounts to follow, I hope our recent posts will help point you in the right direction…

— Written by

Katie Padda

— Date

November 27, 2020

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