I think we can all agree that if we haven’t posted it ourselves, one of our close friends or family members has posted a photo of a Starbucks cup with their name absolutely botched. All grammar lessons and spelling cues right out the window. That’s how one of my favorite sets of vacation photos started. A Starbucks cup with a crude scribbling of what was supposed to be my name, my crossed legs with a sparkling sandal on my foot, above a striped airport carpet. I found some interesting graphics in the Oakland airport and uploaded one more photo with the caption “leaving on a jet plane”, but instead of randomly picking a filter, I used the same one I had for my coffee cup photo. I decided to challenge myself for the duration of my vacation and only use that same filter for every upload.
I was flying JetBlue from Oakland to Long Beach to meet my sister and join my family on Catalina Island for some fun in the sun! If you’ve never been to Catalina Island, it’s a magical place off the coast of Los Angeles. It’s just an hour by boat, 15 minutes by helicopter, but feels worlds away. The main town is Avalon, where you can find hotels, rental homes & condos and camping. There’s food on every corner, from a burger & corn dog w/fries at Coney Island West to the filet at Steve’s Steakhouse, there’s something for everyone. But my guilty pleasure our the decadent carmel apples from Lloyd’s, a candy maker that pulls its own taffy right in the window for you to see. I can’t talk about Catalina without talking about the tile & the architecture. Catalina tile was made right on the island and used when they built the Casino. The Casino isn’t used for gambling, but hosts the movie theater, a museum and a beautiful ballroom. The exterior features a gorgeous Art Deco mermaid that I photograph on every trip to the island.
Can you tell I love Catalina Island!?!! Adding my photo filter challenge to my trip made me rethink the way I viewed everything. It let me see a place I’d been to so many times before with new eyes.
- Pick One Filter- play around with the filters and see what speaks to you. Decide if you’ll use the frame or not. Keep this consistent throughout a group of photos
- Group of Photos- at minimum try to apply the above to 9 photos. This gives you a 3×3 look if/when you print your photos. If you take more think about 4×4 (16 photos) and so on
- Stay Square- when I originally did this all Insta photos were in the square format, you didn’t have the option of vertical or horizontal. Square works best, especially if you go to print them
This challenge was so much fun and really turned out amazing, but I did run into some challenges.
- Lighting- low light took away some of the depth of color. For somewhere that’s so full of vibrant color, I didn’t love every low light photo
- Grain- any photo with backlighting became very grainy. A different filter could’ve changed this
- Filter Didn’t Look Right- some photos just didn’t look good with the filter I’d chosen, but I loved them. Easy fix- save them for #TBT and edit away- like this black and white photo after this trip
I do want to point something out- You do not have to post while you’re on vacation! You can take all of your photos and then spend the time editing and uploading when you return home. This is especially true if you have any concerns about broadcasting that you’re not home or where you’re vacationing. Always make safety a priority!
When I returned home from this trip I had a beautiful collection of photos that looked so nice on my Instagram feed. The color, the look, the feel, was all so lovely and cohesive. I wanted more than just having them sit in my feed, so I looked to printing options. Here are some ideas for how to print and display your photos:
SOCIAL PRINT STUDIO
This is by far the best option! I’ve listed 4 products below, but it’s so worth cruising their site and day dreaming about all of the possibilities. I mean, vacation photo magnets! I see vacation photo birthday presents in my family’s future. No matter what you choose, from prints to posters, you won’t be disappointed.
- Printing: All Product
- Square Prints: Classic Prints
- Magnets: Square Magnets
- 50-200 Images: Poster
I’ve found that quality can be hit and miss, but is mostly good. Just make sure you check the print size before you order. If you plan on using a frame I’ve noticed that they vary in size.
- Target: 5×5 prints
- Shutterfly 4×4 prints
Here are three different levels of display, from clipping photos onto a grid to hanging a wall gallery.
- Target: 9 piece Gallery Wall Frames
- Target: Gold Grid Photo Display
- Target: Multi Photo Frame
Are you going to try this? Are there other events this could work for like a birthday? Tell me about it in the comments below!
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