Last year about this time, as the world seemed to be shutting down around us, I took the plunge and went on Instagram to try and promote my works and writings.
Marketing myself was my goal, and I talked a bit about this last summer on GeekMom.
I have always found social media to be one of those weird beasts that I feel are very useful at times, extremely counterproductive time-wasters at others, and with everyone and their goldfish thinking they are political experts (on all sides), mean spirited and soul-crushing as well.
Instagram is no exception, but the one thing I have discovered is it is by far the most visually art-focused, creativity-celebrating platform of all of them. You could argue Pinterest is higher up there, but to me, Pinterest (which I love) is that big giant digital bulletin board of your favorite things. It is hard to let your own work shine amidst the massive display.
So far, I’ve found Instagram to be where the independent visual artists can gather and show off their and others’ favorite works.
Just from my perspective, TikTok caters to the performers, Twitter to the “talkers,” and Facebook personal family and friends, all divided up into groups. That is all fine. My visits to Instagram, however, have become trips to that cool little eclectic art gallery or artisan market around the corner where I have “met” some wonderful creatives of every ilk. They, in turn, welcomed me with open arms. No professional hurdles to jump or resumes needed. The vibe, at least in my short time with it, has been:
“Do you like my work?”
“Hey, I like your work!
“Here is someone else who does really cool work.”
I suppose you could say coming across other creative individuals has been “inspiring,” and I wanted to share just a small amount of the many, many wonderfully creative artists and crafters whose work makes me consistently smile.
Calling her work “the dark side of cute,” I first ran across her retro-Halloween infused works at a custom hearse car show at a funeral museum. I soon ordered a couple of her pieces (Skelley Animal Brooches), and later ordered a pair of her VooDoo Doll Illusion earrings for my daughter. It is hard not to peruse her site and see the humor and fun she puts into all her work.
I could be simplistic and say this artist’s work is primarily textile art moths, but they are so much more. These are, as she says in her bio, “quiet beautiful companions for daydreamers and midnight readers.” These are elegant pieces with antique brocades or velvet-like wings, with artful embellishments and needlework, just for starters. They are just lovely and each creature is more impressive than the next.
Unusually Chic Boutique
Artist Giada Santacesaria makes “alternative bouquets” and other favors for weddings, parties, and other special occasions that fit your fandom or geeky passions. I have seen wedding ideas where action figures have been incorporated into the décor, but hers are above and beyond classy, with themes from Hello Kitty to Star Wars, video games to vintage Alice in Wonderland, and everything in between. Some designs prominently feature a character, while others you have to give a closer look for the geeky surprise to reveal itself. My favorites are her steampunk Alice and Harley and Joker designs. Everything is filled with color and fun, and it will make you want to throw a fete just to use her designs.
Artist Adam Hostetler is a self-proclaimed fan of theme parks, horror, tiki, and adventure, and has poured his love for these pop culture favorites into his original vintage style prints. Some are 3D designs and some have the weathered paper look, and all of them take you on a journey into another world. It is hard to say which one is a favorite, but his nifty Hellblazer event poster is a different take on Constantine and Zatanna than any I have ever seen.
Find him on various social media platforms through Linktree.
A vintage, clockwork mix of wood, gears, and other materials for an animated parade of items you can’t just pin down. I would start by saying the work splice’s steampunk with Geppetto’s workshop, Terry Gilliam with Tim Burton, and carnival with cosmic time travel and beyond. To steal a phrase from Willy Wonka, it is “pure imagination” come to life with the turn of a crank.
Follow these incredible pieces on Instagram.
Now, I feel compelled to say I don’t know any of these artists personally nor have I ever received any trades or promotions from them, but sometimes when amazing work catches my eye, I just have to share it. That is the beautiful thing about loving creativity. It always puts a spark in your soul and a song in your heart. In this sense, the creative spirit can love you right back.