Instagram tips

Instagram: how to post the perfect facade

My Instagram feed is full of facades – as anyone who follows me will definitely know.

I started posting facades in March 2016. Before that, my pictures weren’t getting many likes. That changed when I posted this picture of Mexico City.

I didn’t even know facades were a thing on Instagram. But that picture got over 1,000 likes (I had around 3,000 followers at the time, so it was a pretty big deal for me).

I studied the picture and tried to work out what people liked. The plants? The colours? The sunlight? Here are my tips on how your facades can get more likes:

In the camera

DETAILS. Look for details that make the building unique. Maybe it has quirky windows, a pretty door, or nice colours. Instagram is about aspiration. Users want to feel part of the thing they’re looking at. So keep everything in focus.

COLOUR PALETTE. Colour matters. I have a huge back-catalogue of facades – most of which I’ll probably never post to Instagram because the colours aren’t quite right. Instagram loves pink and light blue, colours that match, colours which aren’t too bright.

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PLANTS. Hunt down the facades that have pot-plants or foliage. My most successful Instagram post features 28 pot-plants! Independent travel magazine @tinyatlasquarterly actually created a #plant_problem hashtag for all the pot-plant lunatics, like me.

PERSPECTIVE. If you want to photograph a tall building, take a step back. Don’t tilt your camera. Instagram likes straight-on shots. You can fix the perspective in post-processing, but too much editing can distort your image.

Post processing

STRAIGHTENING. I straighten up most of my facades in post-processing. We can’t always get perspective right with the camera. The straightening and perspective tools in VSCO are the best around for editing facades.

VSCO FILTERS. Filters are usually a good idea on Instagram, for facades too. I’m a professional photographer and when I first started using Instagram, I found it a bit disheartening to know people preferred the pictures where I’d used filters. But they help you create a cohesive aesthetic across your gallery. Try to find a couple of filters you like, and stick to them – it helps your photos become more recognisably yours.

INSTAGRAM SQUARE. Remember, if it’s not a square, only your followers will see your post as a full image. Other people will see the cropped square. So make sure the things that make your facade stand out, the important details, all fit into that square. Give people a reason to click.

Have I missed anything out? Do you have tips on photographing and editing facades? I’d love to get a discussion going on the subject!

13 thoughts on “Instagram: how to post the perfect facade”

    1. Hello! Thank you. Very happy to know you might use these tips for your page. And I’ll have to check it out … We all love a good doorway. Good luck with your new project!

  1. Thanks for sharing your advice! I can absolutely relate to the discomfort of using filters on Instagram when you come from photography. I think I’ve found a pretty good balance over time 🙂 I really love your Instagram feed and I would love to read more tips in the future!

    1. Yes, me too. I really didn’t like the idea to begin with. Thank you very much – if there’s anything specific you’d like to read about, please let me know!

  2. These are great, Carolyn! I love your facades, and facades in general, really. I’m just a big scaredy cat when it comes to taking photos of them! I can’t get past it! 🙈
    Should I ever manage to, these tips are being saved for future reference. Thank you! 😘

  3. I started following after that flower photo I think. It was sooooo pretty! I do love facades too, and I wish I can get my hands on more colours but hey, I am in Cambridgeshire and I can only get to so many 😀

  4. Okay I totally didn’t know about the square only showing to non-followers. Interesting! Just came across your Instagram because I saw that coffee shop you visited in Barcelona. Great feed and great blog!


  5. Thank you for these tips! Instagram is a constant struggle for me. My photos are scattered between France and California sunsets and pretty details of everyday life – totally inconsistent!

    Have you ever tried the app A Color Story? If you have, I’m wondering how you would compare it to VSCO. Also, what do you do if you see a beautiful facade with ugly cars parked in front? Do you have a technique to salvage the photo?

  6. Awesome advice girl! Love your Instagram tips – your insta is amazing.
    I like what you said about finding it disheartening to have to put VSCO filters on your photography… what are your go-to VSCO filters?

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