Spring Challenge - WINNERS!
We’re beyond amazed by all the talented fans out there! Big round of applause goes to our Spring Challenge grand prize winner @thekimbots! Also, congrats to all the runner ups including @weloveariana @mollymgrubbs @shmakoff_com @cliffelvin @annaleticohen @pomacious @elliesmellyy just to name a few!
Happy Mother’s Day!
Happy Mother’s Day! Still searching for that last minute gift idea? <3
Use the code ‘MOTHERSDAY’ upon checkout to get 20% OFF Casetagram’s virtual gift card. What better way to celebrate Mother’s Day than to grab all her favorite photos and making a case together? (expires May 12)
Instagram + Samsung Galaxy S4 Cases
The wait is over! Casetagram for Samsung Galaxy S4 and Google Nexus 4 is finally here.
Go ahead and choose your template, grab your favorite photos and go wild and dress up your phone! We’re always listening. Not only did we extend our range from iPhone, iPad, iPad Mini, iPod Touch, but we now also have the full Samsung Galaxy line available, along with with Google’s Nexus 4. www.casetagram.com
@WiedenKennedy x Casetagram! We’re beyond thrilled to collaborate with one of the most creatively led advertising agencies who’ve previously worked with Nike, Intel and Tiffany & Co just to name a few.
Check out these exclusive #WKjia Collection available now on www.casetagram.com/collections/WKjia
Beyond brilliant designs available for purchase now!
Stickygram x Casetagram
In the spirit of love, we’ve partnered with @stickygram for a contest, giving 3 people a chance to win a Casetagram and StickyGram!
Theme is “Unconditional Love”
Love is an infinite idea to explore. It may be emotion, color, person, thing, idea…show us what love means to you! Simply tag your photos #ulovegram #casetagram and #stickygram. The competition closes Feb 9th at 11:59pm EST. We can’t wait to see what you come up with! Happy snapping!
Casetagram Featured Artist: Interview with Kyle Steed
We recently caught up with one of our top favorites from our Casetagram Artist Collection, Kyle Steed. He continued to inspire us with his stories about Instagram, iphoneography, and his life as an illustrator. He further shed light on his artistic style, creative passion and of course, favorite Instagram filters.
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I’m Kyle and I am 30 years old. I have a beautiful wife, of almost 7 years now, who loves and supports me. Together, we have two dogs, a black and yellow lab, that keep us active and bring us lots of love. I’ve been self-employed for almost a year now, mainly doing illustrations, with some graphic and web design jobs, but I want to step further in the direction of murals. I love everything about design, but I’d consider myself a problem solver. Design is like solving a problem. Art is like asking a question. Photography is like telling a story.
When did you join Instagram?
I’m a late adopter of Instagram. I think it was early 2011 when I finally got my iPhone, and I’m pretty sure Instagram was the first app I downloaded.
How often do you get the chance to post on instagram?
When I first joined, I chose to post a lot, all the time, but now I’ve really scaled back the amount of photos I post. I feel that quality is greater than quantity when it comes to Instagram. Also, it’s more important for me to ask myself, “what is this photo saying?” I want my photos to say something, not just look pretty. But my friend @moneal just said something to me yesterday that really got me thinking, “Instagram is like a playground to test out new ideas.” And I think that’s true as well.
Who are your favorite Instagramers?
Has Instagram changed your life?
Wow, umm, I don’t think so. I really don’t. I think Instagram is wonderful and easy to use, but it’s just a tool. It is just another outlet for creativity. Any success I’ve had, as it relates to Instagram, doesn’t hold any real weight for me. When I hear words like “instafamous” being thrown around, sometimes directed at me, I just have to laugh. There is no such thing as being famous online, it’s really just a popularity thing, and what does it really amount to anyways … absolutely nothing. But, on the reverse side of that coin, I do want to use the platform I’ve been given for good. To help promote my friends and encourage others with the word of God.
How would you describe your style?
Simple. Clean. Organized. I’d be lying if I said I have not been inspired by the fantastic art direction in any Wes Anderson film. His attention to detail, and very centric focus, has helped shape a lot of the way I take photos. I know the rule of thirds, but I like to break that rule. Also, I shoot a lot of “birds eye view” shots. I think it comes from me being so tall. I am 6’4” so I’m constantly looking down on things in life. I feel like the 1:1 ratio of Instagram is the perfect format to compose these types of shots.
How do you choose who to follow?
Again, it comes back to quality over quantity. To be honest, I don’t follow a lot of my friends. And it’s nothing personal, but I just take the curation process very serious. I don’t want to sit and have to sit and scroll through image after image of children or dogs/cat, or what have you, only to see a good image pop up every once in a while. But it’s an ongoing process. Some people I follow now, I may not be following in the future. And I would expect the same thing from my followers.
How do you spend your leisure time?
Walking my dogs. Quiet times with God. Writing in my journal. Taking a nap. Cooking something from scratch. Sharing a bottle of wine with friends. Fly fishing. Cruising my longboard. Relaxing at home with my wife.
How did you get into photography/ iphoneography?
The earliest memory I have of holding a camera was my early childhood and I remember going to the park downtown and walking around the pond. Taking photos of the ducks and of the reflection of a tree in the water. I still have the old 3.5”x5” prints from that day. I guess that could be considered my first photo walk ever. LOL!
But it wasn’t until later on in life that I took photography more serious. The summer of 2000 was when I got my first 35mm SLR. It was a gift for graduating high school. That set me on a path to shooting hundreds of rolls of Illford B/W film over the next year or two.
Then I found out about LOMO. Do you know LOMO? (http://www.lomography.com/) I was first introduced to the Holga, and the LOMO LC-A, around 2001-2002. This was a whole new world to me. I had never seen such beauty in the subtle mistakes before. Light leaks. Soft focus. CROSS PROCESS! I became instantly obsessed with shooting slide film and having it processed as normal film. The color tones were beautiful, not to mention unpredictable. The whole LOMO philosophy was/is “shoot now. look later.” And I love that.
Around this same time, I started shooting more with my polaroid as well. I had the ordinary 600 one shot camera, but I found an amazing old land camera, with the pull apart film, in a thrift store. I have a book of polaroids I shot from my time in Japan. And I still have that old land camera sitting on my shelf here at home. The original polaroids still have a special place in my heart.
I resisted digital photography for a long time. I was too proud to put down my film, and at the time of early digital photography you just couldn’t match the quality of film. But I eventually broke down in 2004 and picked up my first digital camery, Sony Cybershot DSC M1. The thing looked like an old flip phone, except the lens part actually rotated 90 degrees out to the side. Not to mention it had a Zeiss lens in the thing. So even at only 5MP the thing was a beast. It lasted longer than every relationship I had before I got married.
A few years ago, for my birthday, I picked up a Nikon D40 DSLR. I only have one lens for it, the Nikor 35mm f/1.8. It’s a thing of beauty. It still serves me well to this day in conjunction with my iPhone. I’ll take it out every once in a while now to shoot stuff. I took it to Florida this past summer and got some fantastic shots. I feel it achieves another level of photography that my iPhone is still lacking. But the iPhone is catching up pretty fast. And that brings us up to the current.
The camera on my iPhone is so accessible. It goes where I go, and fits in my pocket. If you would have told me 10 years ago that I would be carrying around a camera, in my pocket no less, that takes incredible photos by the touch of a button, I would have laughed at you. The camera on the iPhone continues to push me and challenge me to take better shots. But it’s all about the basics, great light + good composition = winning photo every time.
Note: If you’d like to read more, I wrote a blog post called “How did you get so many followers on instagram” earlier this year. http://blog.kylesteed.com/2012/04/how-did-you-get-so-many-followers-on-instagram/
Ever participated in an Instawalk / community events?
Yes. I’ve participated in and organized Instawalks, or an Instameets as some say. There has been a couple here in Texas that I’ve been a part of. I put together one while in Brooklyn this year. I find it’s always best if there are fewer than 10 people though. Any more than that and it’s difficult to really get to know anyone. Most photographed item? Probably my coffee table. It’s the backdrop to most of my organized, birds-eye view shots. It’s made out of reclaimed wood and it looks beautiful in the morning light.
Favorite instagram filter?
Definitely a toss up between Rise, Amaro and Nashville. Rise provides richness and warmth, Amaro provides a subtle calmness to the photo and Nashville is the perfect filter for skin tones.
How do you edit your photos during post production?
A very simple process. I shoot with the native camera app. I open the photo in Snapseed to crop and adjust some of the levels. Then I export to my camera roll and open in Instagram. Funniest instagram moment The original #Campstagram with my good friend @brenton_clarke. We bought ourselves these red union suits and woke up at the crack of dawn to get the best/funniest photos the world has ever seen.
Here is Brenton’s photo of me: http://instagram.com/p/S3hQWTujFv/
Finally - Any last words?
Thank you! Thank you for having me be a part of your new artist series. Thank you for letting me ramble on here in this interview about my history of photography. Thank you for making an amazing iPhone case that doesn’t take away from the sleekness of the iPhone itself. And to anyone who reads this, I hope that you find yourself apart from the work you do, photos you take, or amount of followers you have. We were created for much more.
Other places people can see my work:
website : http://kylesteed.com/
instagram : http://instagram.com/kylesteed
tumblr : http://steedtastic.com/
instaxagram : http://instaxagram.com/
steedicons : http://steedicons.com/
52 profiles : http://www.52profiles.com/
hand-drawn words : http://handdrawnwords.tumblr.com/