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Discovering — and telling — stories from around the world. Curated by Instagram’s community team.
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Hello, world! It’s time to meet today’s #WeeklyFluff: Timothy ( @timothy_the_mini_pig), a house-trained piggy with an adorably squishy nose. 🐽 When he’s not eating, sleeping or playing with his human mama, Timothy likes learning new tricks — as long as they result in a treat, of course. Follow @timothy_the_mini_pig to never miss a day in Timothy’s life.
Annie Flanagan’s ( @annieflanagan) portraits are so intimate, so full of private moments and bared emotion, that you’re almost compelled to avert your gaze — but don’t. “Such a large part of the hate, confusion and judgement, gender-based or otherwise, stems from a lack of understanding,” says Annie, a New Orleans-based gender-neutral photographer and filmmaker. Currently, Annie’s working on a documentary project that introduces the genderqueer community to rural communities. “The more people can get to know each other, and the situations that are threatening or unfamiliar to them, the more they can identify with each other,” Annie says. “We all have so much to learn. Creating this intimate work can, in whatever small way, open up spaces for conversations and healing.” It’s June, and in many countries that means it’s time to celebrate #Pride2017. All month long, we’ll be sharing stories from diverse LGBTQ community members from around the world, like Annie. Photo by @annieflanagan
“I’ve been looking forward to this moment since I was a kid,” says Malik Monk ( @ahmad_monk), a 19-year-old former shooting guard on the University of Kentucky men’s basketball team, who’s heading into today’s NBA draft as one of the most sought-after picks. Though he only spent a year at Kentucky, Malik helped his team advance well into the NCAA tournament — “I’m proud of how we made it to the Elite Eight with such a young team” — and is ready for the next level of challenges he’ll come up against in the NBA. “I’m really looking forward to the competition,” he says. “I’m going to be playing against the best players in the world.” 🏀 Head to @ahmad_monk to follow along with Malik for the #NBADraft. Photo by @ahmad_monk
Some 13 year olds ask for bikes, later curfews or larger allowances; Brooklyn and Bailey McKnight ( @brooklynandbailey) asked for their own online video channel. “We grew up on our mom’s channel,” say the Texas-based twins, who gained their ease in front of the camera by acting as hair models for their mother’s own hairstyle-focused video channel. “Viewers were asking about us all the time, so we really hoped for our channel to showcase our personalities and the more personal aspects of our lives.” Four years later, Brooklyn and Bailey post new videos every week, which is dedicated to “all things fun” — anything from beauty trend trial and errors to comedy sketches and songs. “We try to showcase the normal, day-to-day aspects of being teenagers,” they say, which includes thinking about college. What will become of the dynamic duo’s channel once they strike out on their own? “We still plan to film videos while at college. We’re both excited for those adventures, but nervous to be away from home for the first time!” This week, Brooklyn and Bailey are headed to #VidCon, an annual celebration of videos and video creators. Photo by @brooklynandbailey
Before she identifies as Canadian, photographer Nadya Kwandibens ( @_anishinaabekwe) identifies as Anishinaabe. “I’m an Anishinaabe woman and an Anishinaabe artist,” she says. “In Canada, native people belong to different nations that are indigenous to this continent, which is known as Turtle Island. The Anishinaabe — which translates to ‘the people’ in our language — are just one of the many indigenous nations here.” Nadya lives on Anishinaabe land in northwestern Ontario, and her ancestors have called what is now Canada home for over 10,000 years. Nadya started Red Works Photography ( @_redworks) to empower herself and other First Nations people through portraits, event photography and workshops. “By focusing on the strength and vibrancy that our people have, we’re changing that way that society sees indigenous people,” she says. “It’s important that my artistic practice shed light on the fact that indigenous stories have been largely silenced during most of Canada’s colonial history. But there is more willingness to make room for dialogue and collective understanding. I’m hopeful about our future.” #NationalAboriginalDay Watch our Instagram story now to learn about First Nations culture and art with Nadya. This story is part of #🇨🇦❤️ , a new series celebrating people all across Canada. Photo by @_redworks
As seen through a puddle, cobblestones and nearby apartments became #WHPstandout material to Alek Malachowski ( @hashtagalek). “I like how the reflection of the building disturbs the structure of the pavement,” says Alek. Photo by @hashtagalek
“I love making people laugh,” says Ashley Helbert ( @tiny_chikn). “I bought this hanging basket plant a few weeks ago at a local Tennessee nursery, and I instantly thought it looked like some kind of floating plant monster. I finally took it upon myself to give it googly eyes.” 👀 #WHPstandout Photo by @tiny_chikn
In the heat of the summer, “Cloudy sleeps closest to the AC,” says Chandan Bhola ( @chandanbhola), who took this picture of his furry friend at home in Gurugram, India. Follow along to see more of our favorites from last weekend’s hashtag project, #WHPstandout. Photo by @chandanbhola
Three — that’s how many trainers Isabela Moner ( @isabelamoner) had in the six weeks leading up to filming the @transformersmovie, when the 15-year-old actress was getting in shape for her role as the independent Izabella. “I was doing cardio, boxing and resistance training,” says Isabela. “I had to build up stamina and endurance for the long days that little old me would be running alongside Mark Wahlberg.” Tough workouts and extraterrestrial bad guys aren’t even Isabela’s biggest challenges these days — it’s balancing school and acting. “My mom said I couldn’t continue acting if I didn’t keep my grades up,” says Isabela, who calls Cleveland home. “I usually fit in as much school as I can on set, but it’s hard to switch gears. You go from quadratic formulas to dramatic death scenes. It’s complicated, but also rewarding — I have such a sense of accomplishment in juggling both my career and my education.” Photo of @isabelamoner by @adamchristopherphoto
It was only six years ago that Sebastián Villalobos ( @sebbbbas) first borrowed his mom’s camera to create his own videos and post them online. “Growing up, we didn’t have a computer at home,” he says, “so I had to go to a cybercafé and pay to go online!” At 21 years old, Sebastián is now one of the most popular video creators in his home country of Colombia, with millions of fans who follow his channel of comedy sketches and music videos. “I believe that part of the success is because I’m not unreachable,” he says. “I’m just a normal guy with a bunch of dreams.” This week, Sebastián is headed to #VidCon, an annual celebration of video and video creators. Photo by @sebbbbas
Starting today, we’re introducing the option to share a replay of your live video to Instagram Stories. Now, more of your friends and followers can catch up on what they missed. When your broadcast has ended, you’ll be able to tap “Share” at the bottom of the screen to add your replay to Instagram Stories for 24 hours. You can also tap the toggle and choose “Discard,” and your live video will disappear from the app as usual. When someone you follow shares a replay, you’ll see a play button under their profile photo in the stories bar. Tap it to watch the video and see comments and likes from the original broadcast. Since introducing live video in November, millions of people have used it to connect with friends and followers in an authentic way. Now, you can share these experiences with even more people. To learn more about today’s updates, check out help.instagram.com. These updates are available as part of Instagram version 10.26 for iOS in the Apple App Store and for Android in Google Play.
“Photography allows me to stay on the move, much like I did throughout my childhood and young adult years,” recounts photojournalist Diana Zeyneb Alhindawi ( @dianazeynebalhindawi), who was born in Romania to an Iraqi father and Romanian mother. “Our family faced repeated harassment under the communist regime, but returning to Iraq was not an option for my father,” she says. “He would have been killed.” The family moved to Syria, then back to Romania, where they applied for asylum in Germany, but were rejected. “We ended up living in a refugee camp in former Yugoslavia, and were accepted for resettlement in Canada just before my 8th birthday,” says Diana. We were the perfect refugee family — my mother and father had professional degrees, and my brother and I were young enough to easily integrate into a new society and national identity.” Diana now divides her time between Brooklyn, New York, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. “I started working in humanitarian aid because I wanted to help people in the types of situations my family went through,” she says. Four years ago, she decided to turn to a career in photography. “It lets me immerse myself in the lives of others, and to continue working with those experiencing some of the world’s harshest realities.” #WhereIComeFrom June 20th marks #WorldRefugeeDay, a day to honor the men, women and children who must flee their homes under threat of persecution and violence. Photo by @dianazeynebalhindawi
Two brothers play with optical illusions on a beach in the Netherlands. #WHPstandout Photo by @chezdre
An average man and an average fish transform into one extraordinary creature in Tehran, Iran. #WHPstandout Photo by @anatiros
A burst of bright yellow shines from Hong Kong’s monochromatic skyline. Follow along to see more of our favorites from last weekend’s hashtag project, #WHPstandout. Photo by @ryanmamba
When Rosanna Pansino ( @rosannapansino) first moved to Los Angeles from her hometown of Seattle, she decided to start making online videos to get more comfortable in front of the camera. “One of my first videos was me making a Mario-themed cake,” she says. “After posting that, I began to get requests to make more themed treats.” And so, Nerdy Nummies, Rosanna’s weekly online baking show, was born. Baking has long held a special place in Rosanna’s heart — her grandmother taught her the art of mixing, pouring and measuring when she was growing up, and continued to be a family activity during holidays and special occasions. Even today, Rosanna’s family is behind the scenes of Nerdy Nummies. “My mom, dad and sister all moved to LA to help run the show,” she says. This year, Rosanna is heading back to #VidCon, an annual celebration of video and video creators. “There are always two best parts of VidCon,” says Rosanna, “catching up with my friends and meeting my awesome viewers.” Photo by @rosannapansino
“I wanted to be a singer since I was a child, but the hunger and drive for it escalated when I saw Lady Gaga perform on her Monster Ball Tour,” says 18-year-old artist Trevor Moran ( @trevormoran), who has since gone on to record two EPs and garner a following of loyal online fans. “The proudest moments of my career are when my fans tell me I inspire them to be their authentic selves,” says Trevor, who believes #KindComments are all about love, respect and, of course, kindness. “The most memorable kind comments I’ve ever received were the ones I got the day I came out online,” says Trevor. “People all over the world were showing me great acceptance. It brought tears to my eyes.” It’s June, and in many countries that means it’s time to celebrate #Pride2017. Join the celebration by adding your own #KindComments that uplift you and others in the LGBTQ community.
Playing the inclusive, supportive character of Mae Valentine on Nickelodeon’s “Nicky, Ricky, Dicky & Dawn” isn’t much of a stretch for 13-year-old actress Kyla-Drew Simmons ( @kyladrewatla). “I try to congratulate, acknowledge and praise as many people as possible,” she says. “My favorite emoji is two high-fives!” Growing up in Atlanta, Kyla-Drew relocated to Los Angeles to pursue acting at age 8. “Every day, I remind myself to stay focused and keep a positive attitude. That’s the only way to keep moving forward.” Watch our Instagram story now to hear more #KindComments — empowering comments that uplift you and others in the community.
Actor Corey Fogelmanis ( @coreyfogelmanis) has been performing since he was 6 years old, but it was around age 10 that it all really clicked. “I knew then that I wanted acting to be more than just a hobby,” says the 17-year-old California native, who’s spent the past decade performing onstage and on TV. Each setting brings its own set of rewards and challenges, but after working on a sitcom for the last three years, Corey is excited to take his acting chops back to the theater. “I love the intimacy of it, and that the audience and cast alike can experience something together that’s unique to a moment in time,” he says. “When it’s over, it’s over; it can only live on in our memories.” As someone who’s spent much of his life in the spotlight, Corey is no stranger to the power of #KindComments. “To me, it’s about people going out of their way to spread positivity and build others up,” he says. Join in by sharing your #KindComments — empowering comments that uplift you and others in the community.
The only mystery behind the popularity of Mike Chau’s ( @foodbabyny) pictures is why no one came up with the simple equation — food + babies — sooner. So, what inspired Mike to pose his son, Matt, and his daughter, Samantha, with delicious-looking foods around New York City? Mike’s answer is simple: boredom. “Right after Matt was born, we didn’t go out very often,” says Mike. “We ordered a lot of takeout and ate at home. I was taking pictures, but it was getting boring. Same photos of Matt, same foods. Then I thought it would be fun to combine them. I figured if there was a shot of food with a cute kid behind it, it might be more interesting.” Judging by the response — Mike and his family are often recognized on the street by well-wishers — he was right. But the best part? The family time. “It’s just great that we can do this together, as a family, because we all love it.” Watch our Instagram story now to eat some tasty treats with Mike and his family this #FathersDay. Photo by @foodbabyny