Around this time of year, everyone starts getting a little nostalgic—scrolling through old Instagram posts of summer adventures while you’re swaddled in a few blankets seems to become a daily habit.
In many cases, as college students, Instagram pictures begin to assume the position as soon as the new semester starts. Standing next to someone, side-by-side, against a blank white wall, maybe in front of a tapestry or out and about at a tailgate.
Getting creative with this format is possible, but it is just as easy to run out of alternatives fast. Anyone who wants to keep their Instagram updated and fresh is always searching for new settings to post-up in.
It may come as a surprise to most that State College is packed with Insta-opportunity, on-campus and downtown. You want proof? Let’s take a look at some of Penn State’s very own students!
Parking Deck Roof
Let’s turn a negative into a positive: parking decks. They present such an unnecessary drainage to anyone’s bank account, but now there’s a way to use them for free. First, choose one of the many on or off-campus parking decks available, then go all the way to the top and start finessing. Happy Valley has quite the view from up above and it has always been at your disposal.
Meet Jonah. A New Castle native, Jonah Vitale finds Penn State packed with such a variety of diverse individuals who he would like to connect with.
“I am passionate about having a positive effect on the lives of the people around me,” says Vitale. “I live my life by treating others how I would like to be treated in hope [that] everyone lives in full happiness.”
Vitale treats his Instagram as a creative expression of his life experiences and wants it to continue to grow with him artistically.
A hidden gem in between College Ave and Beaver Ave. Truly anywhere along Calder Way can turn into the perfect environment for a candid. The street is decorated with murals and has a variety of architectural design that is eye catching but won’t draw the attention away from you.
Introducing Marina. Coming to Penn State from Reading, PA, Marina Morales loves how much there is to see downtown.
“This is my second year at Penn State and I still find small nooks and crannies that I’ve never seen before,” says Morales.
Morales finds a boost in confidence through looking her best. By putting on a great look, a full face of makeup and finding something to do, she can reach her best self.
“When you look good, you feel good, and that’s what it’s all about.”
Sometimes you don’t even have to look any further than your classroom to find inspiration for your next post. A lot of Penn State’s newest buildings have a very modern, upscaled interior design that can easily go unnoticed. The Health and Human Development Building has exactly that. From the bold primary colors, to the emphasis on linear elements, it can almost be effortless to set up a great picture.
This is Janelle. A hometown hero, Janelle Bullock was raised right here in State College. Remaining an upstanding and active member of the community, she has truly learned the ins and outs of the downtown area.When asked about her passions, she claimed that writing was one of them without hesitation.
“I also really entertain myself by going off on tangents that express the voices of the alter egos in my head,” says Bullock. “I truly humor myself. I hope to become a published author in the future.”
She claims to have a love-hate relationship with her Instagram, as many of you probably have, as well. Bullock makes sure she checks in with herself to ensure she is being completely authentic because she recognizes how easy it is to be “fueled” by likes – a very important idea to be conscious of.
Palmer Art Museum
Free to the public, the Palmer Art Museum is often overlooked. Students are already pressed for time – an understandable excuse – but if you’re making time for Instagram, make time for the Palmer. While you’re appreciating all the art has to offer, become your own art. There is always new exhibits popping up and filtering through which means the Palmer is quite a versatile location to shoot.
Get acquainted with Lauren. Hailing from the one and only Philadelphia, Lauren Bello is appreciative of any and all forms of art. Some might classify Instagram as a new art medium in today’s technologically advancing world—Bello would agree.
“There is so much beauty and life in art that is underappreciated,” says Bello. “Finding a painting, song or book that captivates you is such an inexplicable feeling, but it’s one that I hope everyone has at some point in their lifetime.”
Bello’s attention goes directly to the overall aesthetic of her feed. She chooses pictures that highlight the best parts of her life while maintaining a comprehensive balance between each individual post.
Now that you’ve got the insight, take advantage of any opportunity that comes your way. Grab a camera, grab a friend (or two) and get to shooting. There are plenty more places around campus, downtown and even beyond that could fit perfectly with your Instagram.
Most importantly, be authentic and don’t take things too seriously.