A father to twins Lucy and Orla, Francis Chan (@thisparentinglife), 44, blends family life with his love of travel, art and nature. But the visual designer from Vancouver, Canada, was fond of photography long before his daughters arrived eight years ago. He’s old-school digital. “I’ve been creating images around the time the digital camera came on the scene. I still remember using an Apple QuickTake in ‘96 and thinking this was the future.” He says traveling with his family helps him relearn and revisit everything he experienced as a child, only this time through their eyes. “I want to impart a sense of childlike wonder and excitement of the world to others,” says Francis. “I also want those parents with children to feel inspired to do things with their kids.” Photo by @thisparentinglife
Syamly Rushdi’s (@syamly) daughter ascends a Mars-like landscape in Melaka, Malaysia, for last weekend’s hashtag project, #WHPmagic. Syamly described the otherworldly location as “a great place for a short getaway from everything.” Photo by @syamly
After her record-setting performance at the 2016 Olympic Games, American gymnast Simone Biles (@simonebiles) found herself in the spotlight. “I haven’t paid any attention to the limelight, since I’ve been so busy,” says 19-year-old Simone, who grew up in Houston. “But it’s definitely a different feeling knowing that so many people watch what I do.” Many may have gotten caught up in the hype — but Simone has stayed grounded, with lots of support from her family and friends. “I just try to enjoy it and still be me, because the most important thing is to always be yourself.” Today, we’re rolling out new tools to maintain the positivity and safety of our community. We are committed to keeping Instagram a welcoming place for everyone.
A Note from Kevin Systrom (@kevin): In September, I shared our commitment to keeping Instagram a positive place for self-expression with the introduction of a keyword filter for comments. Today, I’d like to tell you about new commenting features that we’re launching. In the coming weeks, you’ll be able to turn off comments on any of your posts. Previously this was only available for a small number of accounts. You’ll be able to tap “Advanced Settings” then select “Turn Off Commenting.” You can also tap the ... menu any time after posting to turn comments back on. Also, we’re adding the ability to like comments by tapping a heart icon next to any comment. Liking lets you show support and encourages positivity throughout the community. These updates still mark the beginning. We will continue to work to maintain Instagram as a welcoming and safe place for everyone. To learn more about these tools and others, check out help.instagram.com. Kevin Systrom Co-Founder & CEO
In Istanbul, Asli (@insearchofwonders) took her love of baking to new heights when she conjured this enchanted reaction to a bite of cake. 🍰✨ The goal of #WHPmagic was to bring magic to everyday life with surreal and imaginative photos and videos. Follow along as we feature more of our favorite submissions. Photo by @insearchofwonders
2,600. That’s the number of unique cookie cutters that Patti Paige (@bakedideas) has shaped. It started when she couldn’t find the right acorn-shaped cutter for a customer’s request. Armed with icing in every color of the rainbow, Patti challenges herself to take an existing shape and transform it into something unexpected; an ice-cream cone metamorphoses into a caterpillar, or a baseball hat becomes a chair. “I like to make an outline of a cutter on a piece of paper and turn it this way and that until I start to see things differently,” says Patti, who is based in New York City. “A cookie cutter is just an outline that can suggest many different images if you focus on it and let your mind wander.” The festive parade of emojis and characters filling her photos may look perfect, but on closer inspection, each one is unique. “My goal is to make sure you can see the texture and imperfections in the icing and feel that the cookies are handmade,” she says. For #NationalCookieDay, Patti plans to get into the holiday spirit by filling her kitchen with the warm scent of gingerbread — and some surprising twists on familiar shapes. Photo by @bakedideas
A trip to a tree farm in Oregon City led to this funny optical illusion captured by photographer Thomas Boyd (@thomasrboyddotcom). “Simply put, it looks like a tree grew legs and is trying to escape the tree farm,” he says. #TheWeekOnInstagram Photo by @thomasrboyddotcom
Surrounded by giant concrete tetrapods, a golden retriever partakes in the simple joy of digging a hole at a beach in Japan. #TheWeekOnInstagram Photo by @slo_mo_life
A new (unlikely) friendship commenced in Nara, Japan. This sweet moment = our #BoomerangOfTheWeek. Follow @boomerangfrominstagram to see more mind-blowing loops from our community. #Boomerang by @cambridge7871
Weekend Hashtag Project: #WHPmagic The goal this weekend is to bring magic to everyday life with surreal and imaginative photos and videos. Here’s how to get started: Seek inspiration from fairy tales and film. Stage a scene with your own magical characters using colorful costumes and props. Find touches of magic in the world around you — whether it’s a prism of light appearing like a mysterious portal on your bedroom wall, or a forest transformed into an enchanted woodland by early morning fog. Create optical illusions with your videos and photos. Make a gravity-defying Boomerang, or shooting from a unique perspective so objects appear smaller or larger in your images than in real life. PROJECT RULES: Please add the #WHPmagic hashtag only to photos and videos taken over this weekend and only submit your own visuals to the project. If you include music in your video submissions, please only use music to which you own the rights. Any tagged photo or video taken over the weekend is eligible to be featured next week. Featured photo by @halno
Filmmaker and photographer Gabrielle Menezes (@the_instants) followed Wandjo Kone (pictured), a community health worker in Ivory Coast, as she trudged through a village, visiting pregnant women and girls with HIV. “I think the girls in those situations really need a friend and someone supportive and someone who can explain all of these things to them — to make them feel like they’re a little bit in control of their lives and the health of the baby,” says Gabrielle, who grew up in Zimbabwe and now lives in London. “Wandjo is so good at doing that.” For years, Gabrielle worked as a journalist but is now fascinated by new ways of storytelling. “When I take Polaroids, I no longer have my journalistic hat on. They’re not meant to be documentary images for me,” she says. “They’re meant to be very personal images. They’re meant to be something that really moves people, and not necessarily objectively.” #WorldAIDSDay Photo by @the_instants
Fashion blogger Danielle Vanier (@daniellevanier) takes pride in telling it like it is. “I am just your average girl from London who loves fashion and happens to be fat,” she says. “The thing that makes me #PerfectlyMe is that I am unapologetically myself because I only have one body, one shot at life and I am the only one who has to live with this body. If you don’t like how I look; keep scrolling.” The 30-year-old commands attention with her bold wardrobe. But she’s not only doing it for herself. Danielle says: “There are so many women out there that don’t share my body confidence or sense of self-worth. These women are the reason I put myself out there.” Who or what inspires you to feel #PerfectlyMe? Use the hashtag to share your story. Photo by @daniellevanier
“I tried to think outside the box with this WHP,” says 25-year-old student Karen Cantú (@karencantuq) from Mexico on her creative submission to #WHPthisishome. “Our world is our home, and nature is a big part of it — plants, animals. I wanted to show an ideal ‘home’ where we live among nature and respect it.” Photo illustration by @karencantuq
Filmmaker Nacho Rodríguez (@naseke) was inspired by the movie “Toy Story” for his #WHPthisishome submission. Here his daughter Blanca performed a sweet ballet for a captive, cuddly audience in Valencia, Spain. Follow along as we feature more of our favorite submissions to the project. #Boomerang by @naseke
Hello, world. Meet the unlikely friends that make up today’s #WeeklyFluff: Ponzu and Tsumuji (@shimejiwasabi). These precious pals hail from Hokkaido, Japan, and love to cuddle up with each other and the additional felines in their fam. Just look at kitty Tsumuji with that golden tail! Cozy up to @shimejiwasabi by giving them a follow now. 🐶 🐱