I’m a big fan of Instagram. It’s uncluttered, simple and streamlined; you only see who and what you’re interested in. Unlike Facebook, you don’t have the constant and meaningless stream of event notifications and “Like this or else” images. It’s easy to navigate and manageable even for those who are new to social media — my grandmother even curates an Insta! That being said, if you frequent Instagram like I do or you’ve thought about doing so recently, you should check out some of my favorite friends to follow:


Seeking some southern comfort (with a twist)? Check out @samanthabrownx. Her airy, vibrant glimpses into island life will leave you craving warmer weather. While Sam paints and draws amazing art herself, she also is able to turn the world around her into artwork. Through her keen eye and an even more powerful imagination, Sam has the ability to capture beautiful moments and then make them her own. She's brilliant at embellishing and taking a photo to the next level, even going so far as to add stories to her various images that take the follower into another realm completely. Her work is dreamy, fantastic, and inspiring, to say the least.


If you love puppies and the Midwest, you should check out @johnconlin. His beautiful dogs, Stella and Tazz, know how to model — be it with intense, smoldering stares or playful grins — and John definitely has an incredible ability to capture their candid and distinct personalities. Each picture is saturated with the wisdom, curiosity, and comfort of his dogs. Moreover, his Insta photos are always backgrounded by the ever-changing hues of Wisconsin nature — sometimes earthy, sometimes vibrant, and always gorgeous.


If your interests include art and the east coast, you should follow @ajgregornik. Amanda does some evocative, engrossing origami-like paintings with lines and colors. She’s a teacher, a newly emerging artist, and an old soul. Her Instagram is spotted with artfully constructed work spaces (#deskgoals) and beautiful little glimpses into her creative, pastel, home-made wonderland. She also has a really cute dog (and great taste in tights).


Want a more global, adventuresome perspective? Follow @erikaholum. Erika has a wandering soul that has taken her around the world — and an eye for aesthetics that has led her to capture it beautifully for those who can’t travel with her. She loves street art, interesting people and their stories, great food and even greater spaces. Her Instagram allows you to tag along for her adventures from her sunny, engaging perspective, which makes the journey all the more rich.


Interested in a glimpse at new places around the US? Hit up @alistair.murray. Alistair is a dear friend of mine and an insatiable lover of beauty. Be it in art, the environment, or the everyday faces of those around him, Alistair constantly captures stunning little moments: the awe of a child looking into an ice cream truck, the simple, sunny brilliance of a farmer’s market, the well-known ritual of shared coffee. He is also very fond of architecture (he dreams in it) and has a really strong and engrossing perspective.