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How to Not be Annoying on Instagram

The crafting community online is absolutely amazing and we support each other to the max, but it has to be said that most makers and designers on social media have to deal with irritating things at some point. It’s the same as in any profession! Whether it’s rude people, entitled people, spammy people or just people who don’t understand the hard work that goes into creating crocheted/knitted/woven/etc items, it’s something all of us have to deal with.

I’ve been working on this article on and off for ages and ages – it’s been sitting in my drafts folder for months – but ony just got around to finishing it up and adding some extra goodness.

I need to warn you in advance that this post is full of BIG Scorpio energy. There you go, don’t say I didn’t warn you. I’m lucky enough to have some very honest, very sarcastic and VERY talented friends over on The ‘Gram who helped me provide this quality, ranty content and gave me the push to write this after such a long time of eye-rolling to myself!

Brace yourself… The Karen is strong with some of these…

Pattern? Yarn?

Erm, excuse you, Beverly. Can you form a sentence for me? Fancy adding some verbs in there? Maybe a few prepositions? Here’s the best way of asking a designer what yarn they are using or how to buy their pattern. Feel free to copy and paste: “Hi! I was wondering where I could purchase this pattern/buy this yarn? Many thanks.” Failing that you could bother to read their photo caption, which 99% of the time has all the information you need. Don’t be rude.

When this ends up in your inbox: “OMG, I love your work! I have many social media accounts with 400 followers apiece and would give you good reviews and advertising if you send me your stuff for free! I can share it on Shapchat! Yayyy.”

Back up there, Chantelle. If you want to try samples of stuff for zero dollar you can get one of those ‘first month free’ Birchbox plans or something. My crocheted blanket that took 100+ hours to make plus materials is not that kind of thing. If you like something, buy it. It’s hard enough for makers to run small businesses without sending stuff for free to people. Plus I’d rather have a frontal lobotomy than have my work featured on some grotty Snapchat video. I ain’t 13.

“Hi! Visit my account!”

No, Greg. I don’t want to see videos of you gurning in the gym or trying to sell me protein shakes. Unless you knit whilst you’re doing squats in which case that’s the content I’d be all over.

When these beauties slide into your DMs: “Could you tell me the measurements for this jumper so I can knit it myself?/How did you make this?/How many stitches did you cast on?”

I can absolutely tell you how to do find out those things, Barbara. You can buy the blasted pattern.

Comment under your post: “Ahmagahd Lydia @somerandombird1996! Let’s make these at the weekend! They look well easy innit!

Chances are that Lydia @somerandombird1996 and her friend Felicity @ifelloveroutsideyatesswinebar mean well with these comments, but bitter and seasoned designers know that this means trouble. They won’t be purchasing from you, they’ll be trying their own half-arsed attempt at rehashing your beautiful pom-pom art at home and fail miserably. Because they can’t be arsed to buy the tutorial. Another thing is when people tag you in another designer’s post and say ” Awww bish can you make this for me?!1!”. How about a whole bag of NOPE.

“Follow for unfollowers”

You can spot these slimy creatures from a mile. In fact, I caught one this morning and said “bye!” quite charmingly. I mean, you know, you have to say “cheerio” when you leave the party, right? Normally this happens when people are after A LOT of followers quickly – maybe because they’re still in that Year 9 ‘friend collecting’ phase that they haven’t grown out of yet – and the good news is that you can almost always tell what’s going to happen. They’ll follow you – they already have 50k followers or something – and only follow a child’s-handful of people. Then they unfollow you a few hours later regardless of whether you follow back. Sometimes these crafty little ferrets even follow you multiple times during the same day or week. Some dodgy marketing people say that it’s a viable way of getting ‘Insta Famous’ or some other annoying shite of a buzzword, but everyone knows that it’s a trash move. These people may have 70k followers but they only care about that number. They have an unengaged following who don’t give two hoots. Avoid these people, or at least send them a firm ‘ADIÓS, PENDEJA!” in their inbox when they go.

When people screenshot and repost your images without decent credit and asking for permission.

Ahhh, this one. Haven’t we all been victim of this at one point? It’s normally a page that has a badly-written bio saying that they sell knitting-themed t-shirts and their entire feed is full of other people’s work. If you see accounts called things like ‘knitting.love.amazing’ or, ‘crochet.dreams’ they are normally of that ilk. Annoying! The best thing you can do is report these accounts as they are usually bots. Also, have a scroll through and alert the designer if you spot any of their work. Sadly, sometimes well-meaning accounts take people’s images and, even if they do give credit, they do it WAY DOWN in the caption so it isn’t easily found. Genuine accounts, decent brands and shout-out pages will tag you and credit you visibly.

Bad giveaway behaviour.

Giveaways – if done tastefully and not every month – can be a lovely way of sharing your success at reaching a milestone, launching a pattern or collaborating with a brand. Sadly, some people overdo this and it can get grating. Another thing people do is tag you in giveaways when you haven’t spoken to them before or don’t follow you. Wotcha playing at, Tracy?

Product placement

This for me is most of the time OKAY. I love seeing my friends do well and get sent free stuff (I mean, I told you this would have SCORPIO ENERGY) but when it’s constant – especially with products that are not connected to their style or brand – sometimes it can get up people’s noses.

People who plug their own accounts in your question stickers.

This article couldn’t have been written without the gorgeous Instagram Stories Question Sticker (all hail!) but some people obviously don’t know how to use it. Like, for answering people’s questions or sending recommendations. It’s pretty straightforward. Here’s what it isn’t for; plugging your own chuffing account with sentences like, “I love your work! Visit my profile”, sending spam and acting like a dick. Yes, I’m looking at you, parenting bloggers.

Thank you to everyone who submitted their ideas and experiences for this article! Fancy adding your own? Drop me an email and I’ll add it here.

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Insta Wellness, or how not to let Instagram gradually drive you nuts.

I love Instagram, don’t get it twisted. I really, really love it. However, like most relationships, it’s hard to maintain that fuzzy feeling all of the time. I sometimes find myself feeling completely passionate about my ‘Instalife’ and other days wishing I didn’t have this thing I had to update constantly in order to stay ‘Instalive’ (I made that one up). I often wonder if it’s possible to use Instagram responsibly and without pressure and still stay relevant.

Crafters use Instagram as a modern-day portfolio, a way of us showing our projects and work to the whole world without lugging a giant-sized folder full of printouts and mood boards to magazine companies and sweating our arses off on the tube. I sometimes wonder what happened before social media made it so easy (and free) for us to share our creativity with all and sundry, but I guess that makes me a bit of a product of the times we live in. The answer would be that they lugged a bloody great portfolio all around town with them, right?

Those of us who regularly use Instagram as a professional marketing tool have probably found ourselves panicking about taking that ‘perfect’ photo for our feed (let’s not talk about those constant battles with light) that freaking algorithm, a.k.a “why the shit does this photo have 23 likes and the one I uploaded yesterday have 400?” that gets us twisting our melons, obsessing over BEATING the ALGORITHM (like some kind of end of level boss) and trying to work out appropriate times and weather conditions to post in and if it matters which FINGER you use to press the screen with JUST IN CASE it affects that damn Insta JUJU! I ask you. What have we become with this social media ting? If I payed that much attention to my day job I’d be the most productive bish this side of The Bay of Biscay.

Why worry, I hear you say? Well, part of my income comes from this wrestling. I am self-employed because of Instagram and the connections it has given me. I wouldn’t have had as many magazine commissions or collaborations if it wasn’t for this gosh-darn app and all the things it brings with it. It matters to people, for better or for worse, and the stress is carries along with this are part and parcel of being a maker in 2020.

So, Insta Wellness. I was thinking yesterday about ways of how to make sure we use Instagram more carefully and still be engaged and have other people engage with you. It isn’t easy, and it’s extremely unpredictable, but there are a few ways that we can lower our stress levels and have a healthier attitude to our ‘Instavidas’ (I’ll stop with the made up buzzwords now)…

Why don’t we try…

Being ourselves more. Does this sound weird? Like, being yourself should be the norm, right? Well, not always. I’ve on occasion toned down my views on certain things in order to not scare people off my work/make them think I’m an activist instead of speaking my mind. Not to mention the swearing… Then again, there’s an argument for your real self being part of what you create, and if your followers can’t handle you in all your glory then they shouldn’t be following you in the first place. Freeing yourself from the shackles of being a swear-free, apoliticial maker can help you be more open and relaxed on social media. Trying to be the ideal, perfect Instagrammer is knackering, and people generally respond to you in a more meaningful way if you and your account are, well, more meaningful and real.

Stopping worrying about likes and followers. Really. What matters is your feed and content, not the number of people who have clicked follow or that heart button. Fixating on this only causes bad feelings, negativity, envy and resentment. I always see it as something similar to Alan Partridge saying ‘I’ve got 100 friends’ to that annoyed farmer. Focus on your creations.

Not posting every day. Posting content when you feel like it, or setting realistic goals for feed posts can help keep you organised and away from unnecessary time online. Try setting two days a week for feed posts, one or two relevant “stories” posts a day, or even experiment with Instagram scheduling apps to help you out with this. Plann is a fantastic app that even has an awesome free version AND hashtags organiser (heart eyes) that can really help out. Don’t feel under pressure to take a photo and provide content when you aren’t feeling in the mood. When you’re inspired, post. When you’re tired, take a break. Which leads me to…

Taking a break. Deactivating your account for a few days/weeks, updating your account less often… Those things do not mean that you’ve given up, they mean that you are appreciating your life away from social media and focussing on what’s right and healthy for you.

Choosing our battles. Everyone sees things online once and a while that really tests their patience, but choosing the right time or reason to slide into DMs and/or call people out is important. I’ve had to bite my tongue so much that I’m surprised I can still speak, but it’s important to take a deep breath.

Using polls wisely. When the Instagram ‘polls’ sticker was released, I polled the Jaysus out of everything. Do you like my new top? What do you think of my current project? How about these new needles? Ohh gurl. The problem with this is that when someone votes you down it can affect you. Why don’t they like your blanket? Am I failing? Use polls sensibly, unless you have skin thicker than a rhino. Or you put two correct answers.

Comparing ourselves to others. You do you, they’ll do them, we’ll do us and support each other.

How do you manage your Instalife? Leave me a comment or drop me a line on, well, Instagram and tell me your techniques. I’d love to hear from you!

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How to Drive a Maker Nuts

If you ask most knitters or crocheters what annoys them about their craft they’ll probably say. “yarn vomit”, “knots in balls” or, at a push “having to hide my yarn hauls from my family” AM I RIGHT FRIENDS? This article goes a bit deeper however, because I wanted to explore a little about the more gut-wrenching aspects of being a crafter that really stick in the craw. From pattern theft (if you follow me on Instagram – thank you – you’ll be WELL AWARE of my recent rants about this) to strangers chuckling at you for daring to be under 80 and enjoy knitting, I’ve got you covered. Let battle commence…

So, do you want to drive a Maker nuts? Why don’t you…

Ask a crafter to make you something for free.

I’m not sure which is the more insulting version of this: someone asking you to make them something for zero money or excitedly offering you a tenner for something that is worth ten times that (or more) in terms of labour and materials. It is of course possible that the person has literally no idea how much time and effort goes into creating a handmade item (and that’s not even including the design process) but that doesn’t mean you should undersell your work.
How to deal with it? Well, be honest. Explaining the process, how long it will take and exactly why you have to charge more than Primark for a blanket is a good place to start. If they still don’t get it after that you let them toddle off to buy something else and be done with it.

“LOL! Aren’t you a bit young to be knitting? LOL”

Lord give me the strength to deal with these ones. Aside from the lazy assumption that knitting is something that only a retiree can enjoy, what kind of person shames a person (especially if it’s a stranger!) for a doing a hobby they enjoy? Yeah, we know it’s ‘just a joke’ most of the time but it’s annoying af and yet another example of how fibre artists are not taken seriously.

Be a yarn snob

I unfollowed a person on Instagram last year because of this. The owner of a relatively high-end craft store in a city near me (the sort of LYS that doesn’t sell hanks for less than double figures), this woman would berate people who ‘insisted‘ on knitting using acrylic or cheaper yarns, completely baffled as to why anyone would even consider daring to work with anything less than mohair/silk blends rolled on the thighs of… You get the picture. This señorita had trouble understanding that the majority of people can’t afford to make things with expensive yarns because, well, they can’t afford it, no matter how much they’d love to. Luxury yarns are obviously fabulous, but most of us have bills to pay and/or kids to pay for and the idea of spending €40 on a 50g skein of yak makes our eyes water. I guess some folks have other priorities, or maybe they’re just so gosh darn rich that they can fill their stash with as many hanks of llama as they like without going overdrawn. By all means gush over luxe, but don’t shame those of us who can’t afford it.

Copy other people’s ideas and patterns

I don’t have enough space here to tell you why it really sucks to copy other people’s stuff, but I’m pretty sure you can work out why. Instagram is chock-full of examples of this: Pee-poor copies of well-known designer’s work with a slightly different take on it, maybe a pompom or two less, but it’s the same thing. I’ve even seen people copy a pattern or idea entirely and have the cheek to TAG the person they coped from in the description bx saying “inspired by – insert original designer here – “I’ve been so tempted to call this out in the past, but what can you do? It’s a sad fact that people who agree with naming and shaming are usually labelled as rabble rousers/trouble causers and that’s that. The only thing worse than this is pattern theft (be careful when you choose those pattern testers, huns) which is something I and a few of my maker friends went through last year. All I can say is that the people who steal or copy other people’s ideas have little clue how much work goes into the process, and it’s even worse when another designer you respect does it. Gross. Grossest of all though is that now most designers see theft as part and parcel of being a designer, and accept that this will happen to them at least once or twice. How can we solve this? It’s hard, but make sure you’re choosing carefully when picking testers, go with reliable people with proven, completed tests on their feeds, steer clear of people who are slow to respond to messages and give feedback, and go with that gut feeling; if you have a bad vibe from someone don’t even go there.

Ask a designer for their patterns for free or – possibly worse – parts of their work

Let’s explain this one a bit. One of my friends (a very talented, well-known crochet designer) was asked recently by someone for the measurements they use when designing garments (i.e one of the most complicated parts of garment design and not something you’d offer to anyone freely, even your pals), another was asked to deconstruct a finished sweater and write the pattern out for this random. For free, obviously. You don’t have to be into this kind of stuff to understand why this would annoy any designer. I’ve also heard tales of people asking others to pick apart finished garments in order to count stitches… The entitlement is real.

Don’t take it seriously

Those of us who are lucky enough to do our craft full or part-time as a job are in a great/dream position, but it’s still quite hard to get people to see what you do as a real job and source of income. Choice comment, “Oh, so you just sit at home and knit all day? Bloody hell…” Do one, mate.

So, what can we do with all of the above? The fact is that a lot of the problems listed are down to one thing: ignorance. If someone asks for a pattern for free they’re probably ignorant to how much work writing a pattern actually is. If a person laughs at your hobby they’re probably ignorant to how much of a valuable, rewarding and important activity is is. If someone steals your pattern… No, those people are just dicks.

Thanks to everyone who inspired this post (my Instafamily) and those of you who shared stories – both funny and horror – to be included in this post.

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Coulda, Woulda, Shoulda*… Or Things I Wish I’d Known During My First Year as a Mum.

*Yes I am a Sex and the City fan (and not a fan of Beverley Knight, but respect to that song that reminds me of Year 8) for those of you noticing the title.

I’m not planning on having another child, but during a convo with my fella the other night whilst gobbling garlicky food and excellent wine (love you Spain) we got to thinking (another Sex and the City-ism there) about what we would do differently as parents if we ever have another. Never say never, but we are a typical one-and-done family and given that we have two dogs arriving this week I doubt our combined salaries would be able to take the strain. It is interesting in a kind of nostalgic, “blimey-look-how-far-we’ve-come” way to peruse how you would change the way you parented then and if you’d do anything differently.

I must admit that I have very blurred memories of the early stages, in fact, I used to get a bit cross with my Mum when I asked her to tell me about the newborn stage and she’d say that she couldn’t remember. Nowadays I’m right where she is now! However, what I do remember are all the things I learnt, and here I am writing them down for posterity, like delayed diary if you will. Here are a few tips, experiences and chunks of unsolicited advice for anyone who’s about to have a child, in the midst of the newborn stage and feeling a bit shit (that’s okay, by the way. You’re doing amazingly), or simply just passing through on their way to get to the craft stuff.

I wish I’d known…

That it’s pointless buying shoes for them before they start to walk. Apart from it being quite unhealthy for a baby’s feet to wear shoes, there really is no need (apart from aesthetic ones) for pre-walking children to wear them. We spent a huge amount of cash on cute trainers and flouncy little numbers for my barely-moving Alex when she was very small, only to find that she’d grown out of them in weeks, sometimes days. Save your cash until they’re toddling, then you can buy those incredible Adidas shell-toed trainers. Cuuuute!

That taking a while for yourself is what you should be doing, every single day. And no shame, please. Even the most balanced person can have their mental wellbeing shattered by giving birth and having a new human being to care for. It’s not lie that up to 85%(!) of new mothers experience mood disturbance during early parenthood, and 10% develop depression. During the early weeks and months it’s incredibly important to take time out to enjoy hobbies, take a long bath and do your nails, see mates, spend quality time with your other-half… Basically rediscover the things you did before you became known as Mummy or Daddy. For me it was crafting and some well-deserved meals out with my man. Whatever makes you happy, try and find time to do it. Getting a babysitter is absolutely fine, too.

That the paraphernalia you have to carry around won’t be forever. There are times during the early stages where you feel like you’re lugging around a small bedsit, fridge full of milk included, hanging off the pushchair. You wonder HOW you will EVER bloody well LEAVE without carrying ten nappies (and six just-in-case ones), twenty toys (why though?) and spare tops (for you and the baby) anytime soon. One thing you notice is that soon the amount you carry about will decrease, and I swear that by the age of three all you’ll need when you leave the house are a few bribery snacks and a plastic Triceratops.

That it’s okay to let your partner take the reigns once and a while. You and your other half will have different ways of doing things regarding the baby. You might like him or her to be dressed in a certain way, to play in a different way or just have differing ideas of what constitutes a ‘schedule’, but it’s empowering for your partner to take over once and a while, not to mention a break for you! If he or she does things in a way you think is strange or just not how you’d do it, let them do it and take a breath. I for one wish I’d let this happen and not been such of a control freak about silly little things.

That Googling every doubt only makes everything worse. Distinct memories here of sitting in the pitch black searching for ridic things online when I should have been sleeping. I had a gajillion doubts and every one of them was searched for online, analysed, scrutinised and left me with no answers other than suspecting that I was slowly turning into a maniac. You know how if you Google something innocent like “common cold” it tells you within five minutes that you’re about to die? Yeah. Same when you Google baby stuff. Step away from the laptop, and if you have genuine doubts book an appointment with a doctor,

That most parenting forums are a haven for nastiness, bullying and shaming. Have you heard of Mumsnet? Joke, even my neighbour’s cat has heard of Mumsnet. It may be tempting when you’re feeling isolated to start signing up to numerous parenting websites and trying to bond with strangers, but in my experience, every doubt you share is met with a wall of hostility and will probably make you feel like an even bigger ball of shit than you did before.

That this too shall pass. Ah yes, that overused phrase. It’s true though, and helped me not lose my shit a few times during the rough stages. All bad periods feel like they last forever, but you will get through them and you will be stronger afterwards

That the way you feed your child is irrelevant. All kids end up doing weird stuff in the end, backchatting, failing a subject or two, dating dodgy people… None of that has anything to do with how milk got into their bodies as a baby, despite what some people will tell you.

That what strangers think about your parenting style doesn’t matter. Haters gonna hate. Grannies in Tesco gonna tut. Father-in-law gonna make breastfeeding comment. Sod them all and do what you want and what is best for your family.

That accepting help is not a failure. If people offer to help – even if it’s something simple like taking the dog out, bringing you a cheeky Maccy Ds or washing up the mugs in the sink – TAKE THAT HELP! If people ask if there’s anything they can do, TELL THEM SOMETHING (or two ting) THEY CAN DO! You aren’t failing or lazy by accepting kind gestures and you should be taking advantage of people’s kindness right about then.

That you might lose some friends. A few friends (the childless ones normally) might find it hard to understand that having a new baby doesn’t exactly fit to well around those all-nighters that you used to pull. They might get annoyed that you are no longer your old Courtney Love self and can’t down Vodka until 3am like back in the day or go off for a boozy weekend to Barcelona on a whim. They may even find it impossible to understand how a cosy night in with your baby and a blanket might be more appealing than missioning up to London and skulking around Slimelight. They might get over it, they might not, but the truest friends are the ones who’ll accept you even with a vomited on tracksuit and leaking breasts. The ones who didn’t hang around have done you a favour, doll.

Article · How To · Tutorial

How to: Up your Photo Game on Instagram – for Crafters!

beautiful-cactus-color-721168.png

Photo editing has come a long way, hasn’t it? I’ve got vivid memories of my Dad knobbing about with some program called Paint Shop Pro as a kid and enjoying all the CDs bundled with crap software when we bought a new printer (which was like, every month). My other half is a huge MS Paint fan, and proudly created all his old band’s graphics on it in his musician days. I try and forget the fact that all the type was in ARIAL (my graphic designer soul just cried) and it was red text on black, but hey, it looked good for 2004. I even get threatened by him ‘doing all the graphic design on Paint’ when I take a bit too long to create something for our company on Illustrator… It’s not my fault I’m constantly distracted by knitting.

Now we have miniature versions of Photoshop built into our smartphones, with the average phone able to correct, crop and add that special sheen to even the darkest of images (eat that, Paint Shop Pro!) so, all in all, it’s almost impossible to take a bobbins photo. Sort of. Unless your phone is a Motorola Razr. Remember them? Mine was pink!

That said, it’s always nice to know a few tips on how to make sure your photos look as good as they can on your feed, and that don’t include spending your life savings on a top-of-the-range smartphone or camera. I’m by no means a master photographer, but here are a few ideas that will make your images shine a bit brighter.

THEME UP!

Sticking with a coherent theme with regards to style and colour will hold your feed together. Working with an organised feed will make your ‘brand’ (I hate that word but you know) really look polished and professional, whether you want people to buy your lush hand-dyed yarn, bonnets, or just scroll and see what you’re about. If you’re trying to focus your account on solely your crafting, try not to intersperse your images with baby photos, you relaxing in Crete with hot dog legs or shots of how messy your kitchen is. If you’re seriously into building an identity, consider opening a personal account for those photos to keep your crafting feed free of cluttered, off-topic images. Try using a similar background, filter or style on all your photos to expand that theme further.

LIGHT & SIMPLICITY.

Depending on the look your going for, a plain background, a decent camera (smartphone or otherwise) and a lot of light is all you need. Try and keep your photo area free of mess, cat hair and pieces of cereal (unless that’s your aesthetic in which case, go you) and stake out the sunniest area of your home to be your go-to photo-taking zone. I use a south-facing glassed in balcony (yes, it is hot in summer) to take my photos because the light there is blinding (in both senses of the word) even on cloudy days. I lay my background down on the floor, arrange my object and off I go. My studio is also very bright, so it’s great for impromptu shots. Speaking of unwanted bits of mess in your photos, I recently took a photo that looked incredible – I was convinced I was the daughter of David Bailey for a good moment – I uploaded it and waited for the hoardes of people to gasp at my talent and offer me contracts, until I noticed that there was whacking great black HAIR and a random bead in the background. Fail. FYI, for my coloured backgrounds I use plain A2-sized paper from my local craft shop. Cheap and effective.

PROP YOURSELF UP

Props can add character to your shots. Lets face it, Instagram is chock full of beigeness, marbled or wooden backgrounds and… White. They look lovely, and it’s important for your image to have little to no distractions from the object you want to show off, but adding a well-placed object that matches your theme can make your viewers really see the personality behind your work. I know plonking a cactus next to a crocheted thing is very trite, but it looks great, and if you really love plants (hi) it can add something special. Do you design kids items? Try and get a child you know to pop their cute feet in frame (obviously you’ll have to bribe them) to personalise it. Or how about a vintage children’s book or toy? Do you make home decor? Well, use your entire home to show off that lovely blanket… You get the idea!

SEE ME WITH THEM HANDS

Did you know that #handsinframe is huge? This hashtag is an awesome way of showing your talented mitts actually ‘making’ and working on that special something. No matter if you’re knitting, crocheting, Fimo clay sculpting or simply writing a note on a packing slip, this type of image is another way to make your photos rise above the rest. Some people photo their hands by stuffing their phone between their knockers, others balance them on shelves above their heads (careful, bruv), but if you plan on doing this on the regular, invest in a useful phone-holding contraption. These odd-looking holders securely clamp onto surfaces and hold your phone tightly, leaving you free to shoot your hands, beautiful face, or your face and head covered with yarn like I did once, weirdly.

GET INSPIRED BUT BE YOU

Look around other people’s feeds to see what they’re up to. This doesn’t mean copying (please, don’t copy other people, it’s shitty behaviour), but getting inspired – there’s a big difference. Along with flicking through design magazines, doing this keeps you up to date with trends, what’s happening in your creative community, and gives you ideas on how to adapt these hot looks to your own style. It takes a while to develop your own aesthetic and really make it pop, but once you discover it, stick to it and watch it grow – you’ll really feel great!

Do you have any tips on how to take incredible-looking photos? Let me know!