My Guide To Instagram

I get many questions as to what I do to take the photos I post on Instagram so I finally put together a guide with some tips and a list of tools that I use.

1. Always take any photos on your iPhone with the camera app on the phone. Then bring your photo into Instagram or other photo apps you use to edit. When you take photos with apps other than the camera app sometimes the original photo does not save to your camera roll.

2. If you intend on using Twitter along with Instagram I highly recommend making your username the same. Reason being is that when someone tweets you in a caption from Instagram with you Twitter username but your Instagram name is different, users will not know where that person’s account is on IG. One of the benefits of discovering new users in IG is the ability to click on a @username and see their profile.

3. Add a profile image and fill out your profile. You can only change your profile image through an IOS device (iPad or iPhone). You can fill out your profile via

Posting to Instagram

Sizing: Instagram places all images within a white square which users are ment to guide how they want their image cropped on IG. I have noticed many forget to size their image and and are left with these black bars above and below.


Hashtags: Use as many hashtags as possible within your caption on IG. Down to the very simple keywords. For example:

A photo of the New York City skyline I posted would contain a caption like this:

“Sun shining through the clouds over #NewyorkCity. #NYC #NYWaterway #NY #HudsonRiver #Skyline #Sunrise #Sun #Clouds #Instagram #Iphoneography #IG #InstagramNYC

Many use hashtags to discover new images and for a new user this will allow others to discover your work. Instagram captions can be longer than a Twitter post so when you post this image only post to Instagram first.

If you forget to add a hashtag to an image you can add more hashtags in the comment thread of the same image.

Post to Instagram only first: You will notice that there is no character count for your tweet when composing the caption. Once you post your image, just to instagram, find your image under “your photos” just to the lower right of your image you will see a button with 3 dots. This is where you will share your image to Twitter, Facebook and other social networks you decide to share.

When you share to Twitter here, you will notice you will now have a character count as well as the link of the image that will be posted.

 Responding in comments: When responding in comments, tagging works very similar to Twitter and Facebook. Use the @ symbol along with the username of the person you are directing your comment to.

Common Courtesy: Give back to others! Don’t just post to Instagram. Search for others to follow and also “like” other users photos as well as joining into conversations within comment sections of photos.


refers to the use of camera movements on small- and medium-format cameras, and sometimes specifically refers to the use of tilt for selective focus, often for simulating a miniature scene. Sometimes the term is used when the shallow depth of field is simulated with digital post processing; the name may derive from the tilt-shift lensnormally required when the effect is produced optically. – Definition from Wikipedia

The option within Instagram appears as a tear drop icon above the image. You have two options, linear and radial. (see example below)



The new Lux feature:

Mostly every photo I take with my iphone goes into Camera+ first before uploading to Instagram mainly because I am in love with the clarity filter. Camera+ is a separate photo app for editing photos. Recently Instagram updated their app with a new feature called “Lux” Mainly ment to brighten dark images.

Other apps that I use to manipulate images.

Camera+ I mainly use the clarity filter with this application.

Another app that I use mostly for sunset situations is PRO HDR

The app takes two photos back to back, one under exposed (photo 1) and one over exposed (photo 2) and then merges the two images.


Color Splash: lets you quickly and easily give photos a dramatic look by converting them to black and white, while keeping your chosen details in color. This effect draws the viewers’ attention to the colored areas, creating striking.

Diptic: helps you easily combine multiple photos and apply artistic effects to create exceptional photo collages that can be shared with friends and family via email, Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, Tumblr or Posterous. With rounded borders, 52 customizable layouts and color effects, there are unlimited options to create unique images!


You can follow me on Instagram under: @AnthonyQuintano



  1. This is fabulous Anthony!! I’m going to share this with everyone I know. You taught me how you can tweet from Instagram AFTER posting it. Awesome.

  2. Pingback: Six Times An Hour » Tips and tricks for getting the most out of Instagram

  3. Anthony, nicely done very good suggestions. I wil add my 2 cents. I like 3 other apps that you didn’t mention: Mattebox, Pixlromatic, DashofColor. My last great tip is on the iphone create a merged folder for all the photography apps so they are easily accessible in one place. Also don’t be afraid to take multiple pics, your first shot isn’t always your best shot.

  4. Great post, Anthony. I’ll be sharing. My only qualm is with the excessive hashtagging. I flick right passed those without even looking at the photo when it’s all hashtags. However, it is extremely important to tag photos. Hmm, a necessary annoyance for the time being.

  5. Good tips, AQ! I would recommend learning to use the settings on your phone’s camera app is more than half the battle. Exposure & focus lock in particular are helpful and (to me) better than using tilt-shift.

  6. Thank you for this blog! I’m a huge fan of Instagram but such a novice. I already starting experimenting with your tips.

  7. Thanx for this great walk-through of Instagram! Will definitely follow you, and you find me at @astridvu – I will spread this blogpost to all interested in Instagram i Norway and also pin it to Pinterest.

    Have a great weekend!

  8. Dude!!!! This is awesome!!! Some things on here I didn’t know about!

    You’re a rockstar! Reunion at sxsw?


  9. Just getting started on Instagram (very late to the party, I know, I know!) so thanks for this useful article.

    I hadn’t realised so many people use other apps on their photos before sending them to Instagram. But doesn’t this mean you end up with loads of copies of the same photo in your main iPhone photo library? Like:

    Shoot with iPhone camera -> save to Library.
    Open in Camera+ and edit -> save to Library
    Open it Instgram and edit / share -> save to Library.

    And that’s just one shot! The way I see it, your iPhone photo library is going to turn into a real mess real quick!

    Or have I maybe misunderstood the process?

  10. Pingback: On Broadway with Anthony Quintano | | Instagram NYCInstagram NYC

  11. Pingback: Now that you're using Instagram | Jen Lee Reeves

  12. Woah! I’m really digging the template/theme of this site. It’s simple, yet effective.
    A lot of times it’s tough to get that “perfect balance” between superb usability and visual appeal. I must say you have done a superb job with this. Also, the blog loads extremely fast for me on Opera. Superb Blog!

  13. Question: Who sees photos on my account; i.e. if i receive photos from A, are those accessible to me only or are they viewable to all my other friends on Instagram? Does that make sense? I have an divorced ihlaw friend and I see his stuff. If his ex would go on my account who she sees those photos and, OMG, take it out on me? Thanks.

  14. I simply could not depart your website before suggesting that I extremely enjoyed the standard information a person
    supply in your guests? Is going to be again frequently in order to check out new posts

  15. Hi Anthony, fantastic write up! I have one burning question that I can’t seem to find anywhere. What is the best way to format a caption? Say for example I’d like my caption to read:

    My trip to #Disneyland was a blast I can’t wait to go back!

    Photog credit: @picturetaker

    #disney #amusementpark #summer

    (Formatted on three lines as seen above)

    I can’t seem to make rhyme or reason of the spacing and formatting for the photo caption section. Have you had any luck.



  16. Thank you for this great guide. I didn’t know about sharing to Twitter after Instagram – really useful tip.

  17. Awesome tips, Anthony, thanks! I especially like the one about tweeting the picture after posting to Instagram. Since I’m followed on both social networks by many of the same people, it might be nice to give them a different caption so they’re not seeing the same exact thing twice.

Leave a Reply