Andrew Kuttler | Inside the Insta

Today I’m sharing an interview with Andrew Kuttler, a designer and photographer with over 66k followers on Instagram. He actually went to my college, the University of Kansas (rock chalk!), so this was the perfect opportunity to interview him.

What’s your favorite thing about Instagram?

As a designer, I love being able to share and curate a visual story. Instagram is the perfect platform to get yourself out there and show off your work. I look at it as a mini-portfolio.

What do you take your photos with?

I mainly shoot with my Ricoh GR for personal work. For Boomerangs and still videos I use my iPhone!

What three words would you use to describe your style on Instagram?

Colorful. Graphic. Surreal.

Who are three people on Instagram that you admire?

This changes all the time! So many talented photographers and designers are sharing their work on Instagram. Right now, I’m super inspired by…

@tashalakoz (Tasha Alakoz)

@chriscreature (Christopher Hainey)

@drcuerda (Daniel Rueda)

Where do you find your inspiration to take photos?

I’m a sucker for research and planning ahead. A lot of the locations I use for personal and client work are hours away, sometimes even a plane ride, so it’s important to put in the time to make sure you have a strong concept. I love hanging out at bookstores and going through photo books and magazines—they always provide great inspiration.

What was the most important thing you learned in college?

Be open! And that design can have many different applications. You never know where your path will lead and KU gave me an incredible foundation.

When did you first start collaborating with brands solely through Instagram?

3 years ago! I had been working at various ad agencies around Los Angeles and was really craving more creative freedom. A big brand reached out to me and after pulling out the project with them, I felt the confidence to go out and take a leap on my own.

What is your favorite brand collaboration that you’ve done so far?

I love clients that take me to new locations—I feel the most inspired and come alive creatively when I’m in some place that I’ve never been. I think working with Pixar at their campus in San Francisco for The Good Dinosaur and Inside Out was a big moment for me. I was surrounded by people doing the most amazing things and I’ll never forget the experience.

Thanks to Andrew for talking with me!

xo, Hannah

Continue Reading

Spring Style Trends for under $50

Today, I’m sharing a roundup of some of my favorite spring style trends for under $50! I hate reading style guides and seeing pieces advertised for “only under $100” when I consider that still too expensive, so I created this college-budget-friendly guide for the more trendy pieces in spring. I looked to Vogue, Elle and Harper’s Bazaar for reference—trust the experts! I tried to convert a lot of the high-fashion runway trends into pieces that would be more wearable on the daily.

Seaside stripes

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

navy dress / two toned stripes / orange pullover / off the shoulder

These are forever a classic staple in my closet, but it never hurts to add more! Stripes—especially of the Breton variety—are incredibly versatile and can go from casual to professional so easily.

Cold shoulders

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

black stripes / red halter / blue dress / red ruffles

A nod to the off-the-shoulder trend, but easier to wear. I’ve tried several off-the-shoulder tops on only to have them spring up the second I lift my arms even slightly, so I’d love to try out the cold-shoulder trend instead.

Sorbet shades

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

pink // green // orange // yellow

Say goodbye to boring pastels and say hello to trendy new shades. The sorbet-inspired hues that hit the runway are a cool mix of neon and pastels, creating a perfectly bright blend that you’d find in your favorite limoncello. Punchy pink, cool green, mid-toned orange and bright yellows are ideal for getting out of your winter style rut.

Retro florals

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

pink top // dress // black top // white top

Florals for spring are no longer groundbreaking, but retro florals are back in a nod to the 70s. You might end up with a piece that looks like the wallpaper in your mom’s bedroom growing up, but hey: what goes around comes around.

What’s your favorite spring fashion trend?

xo, Hannah

Continue Reading

Warrior’s Best Friend Visit

I had the amazing opportunity to visit a local organization this past week called Warrior’s Best Friend. I had previously read an article about them in the Kansas City Star (read it for a lot more information) and had just finished reading About Tuesday, a book about the relationship between a veteran with PTSD and his service dog. I decided to raise money for them by selling t-shirts through Bonfire, one of my new favorite websites for fundraising (not sponsored, I just genuinely love it).

Warrior's Best Friend
Stavos, a 2-year-old shepherd/St. Bernard mix

Warrior’s Best Friend pairs veterans with service dogs completely free of charge. All veterans that receive a service dog have some form of PTSD or traumatic brain injury (TBI) from their service. From Warrior’s Best Friend’s website:

Medical studies prove that service dogs can help speed up a soldier’s recovery, both physically and emotionally. And unlike other treatments, service canines provide a lifetime of assistance and companionship. Carefully vetted rescue canines go through a rigorous training process and get a new lease on life as a partner for a deserving wounded warrior. Unfortunately, many of our country’s warriors have to wait years to receive a service dog.

Warrior's Best Friend
Anna, one of the demo dogs used for training in the program

Most service dogs cost an average of $20,000, making it near impossible for most people needing a service animal to have access to one. Typically, service dogs are also specific types of breeds that are bred from a very young age to train as a working dog. Unlike other service dog organizations, all the dogs that Warrior’s Best Friend obtains for training are adopted from local shelters. The only requirements? The dogs have to be within 9 months to a year and a half old, and a certain height and weight to be able to perform certain tasks.

Warrior's Best Friend
Charlie, a 9-month-old retriever and labradoodle mix
Charlie getting up close and personal

Warrior’s Best Friend is currently training 6 dogs but they hope to expand to be able to train even more and help more veterans. After the dogs are trained, veterans go to Liberty, Missouri, to spend 9 days with the dogs. The trainers at Warrior’s Best Friend pair the veterans with the dogs based on personality and the best match.

Every single expense—training the dogs, feeding the dogs, veterinarian care, the veterans staying in Liberty, and the first month of dog food—is all covered by Warrior’s Best Friend.

Gabbie, a 1-year-old Belgian Malinois mix

Warrior’s Best Friend receives money largely from sponsors in the community. For example, Home Depot donated a lot of the materials to help them rebuild their new facilities, but they still rely heavily on donations to keep their organization going. Upfront, the cost of training each dog is about $10,000. Insurance or the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs doesn’t typically cover the cost of a PTSD service dog. What isn’t covered by corporate sponsors or donations is personally covered by the organization’s founder, Joe Jeffers.

The barn in which the dogs live
What the barn looks like inside
What the barn looks like inside

The dogs all live in this barn. More often than not, they’re trained outside, but there’s a training area on the top floor of the barn if needed for colder days. The main trainer also lives upstairs in case something happens overnight in which the dogs are needed. There’s a gated area outside for personal one-on-one training as well.

Andrew, a 2-year-old lab mix

Above is Andrew, who is being trained to be a therapy dog. He’ll be able to be a support dog in counseling centers, doctor’s offices, or other places that would be helpful to have a therapy dog there for calming people down. (He currently has kennel cough—a common sickness dogs get when they’re first obtained from shelters—so he’s separate from the other dogs downstairs.)

My granddad meeting Charlie
Depot, a 2-year-old shepherd/husky mix

Below is a video of Depot being trained. During their training sessions, the dogs are often exposed to shopping centers, sporting events, concerts, etc so they aren’t distracted by crowds, which is one of the biggest triggers for people with PTSD or TBI. The dogs are taught 25 commands in total, some of them demonstrated below.

Stavos licking the gate to get out

From the article in the Kansas City Star:

“Almost every one of these veterans who comes through the program has wives, moms, dads, kids, and it dramatically changes their lives, too,” Jeffers said. “The gratification comes from once you see your first dog placed with a soldier. That’s where the passion comes to do this. There wouldn’t be any other reason to do it.”

Batman (on the left), a 1-year-old retriever/Australian shepherd mix with Anna (on the right)
Here, I’m with Samantha Jeffers, the development director
Here I’m with Boscoe, who has a special lock because he was too smart and got out of his first cage!
Boscoe

I’m so grateful to everyone that helped me raise money for them and I’m happy that I was able to visit this incredible organization and see the amazing work that they’re doing! I was able to donate $700 to them. If you want to donate, you can do so through here.

Thanks for reading!

xo, Hannah

Continue Reading

My Pink Lipstick Collection (and then some)

After writing my post about my red lipstick collection, I wanted to do a follow up with my pink lipstick collection (and some extras)! This is literally all the lipstick I own (21 shades, kind of embarrassing). I like experimenting with pink shades to try and find the perfect my-lips-but-better lipstick, but I’m still working on it. Pink shades are so tricky to get right—so if you have advice, please let me know!

My Pink Lipstick Collection

Full swatches and short reviews of these shades are below.

My Pink Lipstick Collection

Burt’s Bees Lip Crayon in Niagara Overlook: I keep this one in my backpack if I want to look a little less dead for those 8:30 classes. It’s a warm toned pink that looks coralish on my skin tone.

Maybelline Color Whisper in 30 Pin Up Peach: I haven’t worn this shade in forever because it’s very slick and can come off easily, but the color is really nice and pretty similar to the lip crayon above.

Rimmel Lasting Finish by Kate Moss in 05 Rossetto: This shade is a very opaque pink—the swatch is one take! It’s hard to describe the color (Barbie pink if that helps) but I don’t like the finish at all. It’s way too slick and feels like it cakes up on your lips instead of just going on smoothly.

My Pink Lipstick Collection

ELF Moisturizing Lipstick in Flirty and Fabulous: This is definitely a neon Barbie pink that looked SO good on someone with the same coloring as me that I saw on Instagram, but I don’t have the confidence to pull it off! I also don’t have enough opportunities to wear a color like this…

NYX Soft Matte Lip Creme in 05 Antwerp: This is one of my favorite shades for dressing up and pairing it with something blue (a.k.a. half my wardrobe). It’s a bright pink that dries to a comfortable matte.

Burt’s Bees Lipstick in 511 Magenta Rush: This is one of the only purple-toned lipsticks I own. It’s a little more dramatic than your everyday pink, but it’s super moisturizing and leaves a pretty stain.

Colourpop Ultra Satin Lip in Lock Diary: Lock Diary is a darker pink that looks similar to the NYX Lip Creme, but in a finish that’s more similar to a creamy lipstick.

My Pink Lipstick Collection

Colourpop Ultra Matte Lip in Milk Bottle: This shade is a mid-toned pink that leans purple. It’s easy to throw on and go, but it’s not a natural looking color.

Colourpop Ultra Matte Lip in Solow: This is the lighter version of Milk Bottle—it’s way more natural and looks better with a casual look.

Colourpop Ultra Matte Lip in Donut: Y’all, this shade is literally neon. Literally electric. I think it could be a fun summer shade, but I haven’t been able to try it out in the warm weather yet!

My Pink Lipstick Collection

Colourpop Ultra Matte Lip in Mimmy: This shade is so dark for me. It’s definitely the most purple-toned and not really a berry shade. Not really my style, but then again, if I’m feeling adventurous (…nope).

Hard Candy Fierce Effects Lipstick in Night Queen: I bought this for a Halloween costume (to be Sully from Monsters Inc), didn’t end up wearing the costume, and haven’t touched it since. When I put it on to try it, I felt like it was going to get all over my face if I barely touched my lips. Wouldn’t recommend unless you’re aiming for that monster look.

Colourpop Ultra Satin Lip in Tiny Chum: This is a weird shade. It’s a taupe-brown that looks so weird on my skin tone and with my blonde hair, but I feel like if I had dark hair it might turn out better…but probably not.

What’s your favorite pink lipstick (or blue, if you’re feeling it)?

xo, Hannah

Continue Reading

My Favorite Young Youtubers

I’ve been on a huge Youtube kick lately, both with making my own videos and just watching other people’s! I definitely have a certain style that I lean towards and love watching vlog-style, fast-paced videos. I can’t sit and listen to someone’s thirteen-minute storytime, but vlogs are great because they have a fun mix of talking to the camera and b-roll shots (the ‘artsier’ style shots). Here are some of my favorite younger Youtubers!

Morgan Yates

Morgan has a really unique video style and is very open and honest, which I love. She’s a college senior and I love that I can relate to her just talking about going to class and general everyday life as opposed to some Youtubers who are constantly traveling back and forth. She has a way of making her normal life seem interesting.

She also has a vlog channel!

New Age Creators

The New Age Creators are a group of 5 Youtubers who are under SoulPancake (the company behind Kid President, run by Rainn Wilson of the Office). These are more art-style videos, with lots of stop motion and animation. Along with their separate channel, they post videos on SoulPancake as well. They’re very creative and expressive.

Monica Church

You may have heard of Monica Church by now. I feel like her channel is definitely on the rise. She’s one person that inspired me to start creating weekly vlogs (which I’m attempting for the busy month of February)! This is her main channel…

But I actually prefer her vlog channel! You can probably see some similarities between our channels if you look closely enough.

Damon and Jo

Damon and Jo are travel Youtubers. They’re known for their thrifty traveling and they make me feel like I need to just pack everything up and go for one weekend—just shut up and go. They also speak several different languages and make videos in different languages, so if you’re interested in that then you can watch their videos with the captions on. They seem so enthusiastic about life and their banter makes the videos funny as well.

Who are your favorite Youtubers?

xo, Hannah

Continue Reading

trying to make rock climbing my thing

I have a new video for everyone! I’m trying to do weekly vlogs this month to see if I like it. If I do, I want to stick with it and continue them (as well as my monthly recap videos). It’s fun to try practicing a new video style and technique.

Would you like to see more sit down talking videos as well?

xo, Hannah

 

Continue Reading

Dear January 2017

Hi everyone! I’m back with another monthly video. I’m so excited to see these at the end of the year and hopefully put together a full-year compilation of my favorite moments! This video was a time period of me at home for winter break for three weeks, then the start of school for two, so not a lot of exciting things happened. My February video will be one of the best though—containing one of my favorite celebrities and one of the best basketball games I’ve experienced so far! (You’d understand if you were following me on Instagram…)

xo, Hannah

Continue Reading

How to Make a Flashing Text GIF in Photoshop

How to Make a Flashing Text GIF in Photoshop

GIFs are seen constantly in today’s media—they’re used in social media, every listicle ever, even texts! Before they were really a ‘thing,’ I learned how to make these in my high school freshman year photo class. I’ve been doing them for fun for a while now. This tutorial will walk you through creating a flashing text GIF in Photoshop step-by-step so you can easily do it.

Create the original words

Open a blank document. I’m creating this GIF for Instagram, so I’m making it in a 1000 pixel by 1000 pixel square, but you can customize this size easily.

Start with a solid colored background. I’m using this hot pink because it’s bold and stands out easily.

How to Make a Flashing Text GIF in Photoshop

Save the photo. Then add text on the photo, one word at a time.

How to Make a Flashing Text GIF in Photoshop

Continue adding the words you want.

How to Make a Flashing Text GIF in Photoshop

How to Make a Flashing Text GIF in Photoshop

The words are finished! Make sure each file is saved as an individual .png in a sequence.

Change the words into a color gradient

Once you have all the words written on the image, start creating your color gradient. You’ll save the files in a sequence exactly like above.

I went with a blue gradient. Start by changing the top word to the lightest color.

How to Make a Flashing Text GIF in Photoshop

Continue with the rest of the colors. I used a cornflower blue, cerulean blue, then a navy.

How to Make a Flashing Text GIF in Photoshop

How to Make a Flashing Text GIF in Photoshop

Again, make sure each step is saved as a separate file each time you alter the graphic. You should have 7 files total by now if you’re following the same steps as I am.

Save the color gradient in reverse

Save the files in reverse. Even though it’ll be the same design as above, you need to save another copy of the file.

To do this, I’ll change the color of the word ‘this’ to white.

How to Make a Flashing Text GIF in Photoshop

Continue until all the words are back to white.

How to Make a Flashing Text GIF in Photoshop

How to Make a Flashing Text GIF in Photoshop

You should have 10 files in total by now.

Load the files into a stack

In Photoshop, go to File > Scripts > Load Files into Stack. Select all the files that you want and click ‘okay’ to import all the files at once.

How to Make a Flashing Text GIF in Photoshop

This is what the layers panel of Photoshop should look like for you once all the files are imported. Make sure the layers are arranged in the order you want the GIF to go.

How to Make a Flashing Text GIF in Photoshop

Open the timeline

Go to Window > Timeline to view the timeline below the files.

How to Make a Flashing Text GIF in Photoshop

Click on the button that says ‘Create Frame Animation.’

*if it says Create Video Timeline instead, just click on the arrow to the right of it and select the Frame Animation option.

Convert the layers into frames

After the frame animation is created, click on the small panel (highlighted in pink below) and select ‘Make Frames from Layers.’

How to Make a Flashing Text GIF in Photoshop

This will convert all the layers into frames that you can easily use in your animation GIF. Your Photoshop should look like this.

How to Make a Flashing Text GIF in Photoshop

To make sure your GIF is on a loop, select the word ‘Once’ under the first panel and change it to ‘Forever.’

How to Make a Flashing Text GIF in Photoshop

It should now look like this.

How to Make a Flashing Text GIF in Photoshop

Adjust the times (and sequence if necessary)

This is based on preference, but I prefer the 0.5 sec time.

How to Make a Flashing Text GIF in Photoshop

I played the GIF and realized that my words were out of order. You can easily drag and drop to switch it up. I also deleted the blank pink layer to make the GIF run more smoothly. I ended up with 9 frames in total.

Your final panel should look like this.

How to Make a Flashing Text GIF in Photoshop

Save your GIF

Go to File > Save for Web.

Next, make sure your settings are correct. Select ‘GIF 128 Dithered’ for the preset.

How to Make a Flashing Text GIF in Photoshop

Make sure the Looping Options panel says ‘Forever.’

Save your GIF in your desired destination.

Final

Your final GIF should look like this if you followed my directions to a T!

How to Make a Flashing Text GIF in Photoshop

I’d love to see your GIF—tweet it at me @hannahwacamera or tag me in it on Instagram @hannahwacamera.

xo, Hannah

Continue Reading
1 2 3 9