Instagram Academy Review: Unveiling the Path to Mastery

As the founder and owner of PhotoWorkout.com, my role compels me to provide unbiased and thorough insights into photography-related products and courses.

Recently, I explored the Instagram Academy course by iPhone Photography School (iPS), expertly taught by the adept photographer Hannah Argyle.

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First Impressions: Diving Deep into the Instagram Academy

Here’s my initial assessment of this extensive program designed to elevate one’s presence and skills on Instagram.

Production Quality: A Cut Above

Screenshot of the Instagram Academy created by iPhone Photography School. The production quality is very high.

The course immediately impresses with its exceptional production quality. Both the video and audio are crisp and professionally crafted, ensuring that each lesson is not only informative but also pleasing to engage with.

It’s evident that substantial effort was invested into the production aspects to enhance the overall learning experience.

Community Engagement: Learning Together

What truly sets the Instagram Academy apart is its vibrant community. The responsiveness of the iPS staff and interaction with fellow participants are remarkable. Queries are addressed promptly, fostering a supportive and dynamic educational environment. This level of engagement significantly enriches the learning experience, making it both interactive and helpful.

A screenshot of a lively discussion thread from the course community platform and a responsive interaction with the iPS staff.
One of the many lively discussion threads inside one of the Instagram Academy lessons.

A Personal Shift: From Casual to Committed

Traditionally, my approach to Instagram has been somewhat casual and unstructured. However, the comprehensive and practical tips provided in this course have reinvigorated my enthusiasm and commitment to revamping my Instagram account. As both a professional in the field and a learner, I am now fully charged and eager to implement these strategies to enhance my social media presence.

Expert Insights: Learning from the Best

iPhone Photography Instagram Academy Lesson screenshot showing Hannah, the instructure, taking a portrait picture.

The insights offered by Hannah are invaluable, equipping me with strategies to refine my Instagram branding and aesthetic. I am eager to see how these new approaches will improve my content quality and expand my following.

Join My Journey: The Road Ahead

This initial course review marks just the beginning of my journey with the Instagram Academy. I plan to offer a more detailed follow-up in three to six months, sharing my experiences and the tangible impacts of implementing the strategies learned.

I invite you to join me on this educational adventure, to see firsthand how this course might revolutionize your approach to Instagram.

Mobile Learning: Education on the Go

In addition to the online platform, the course’s accessibility is enhanced by the iPS mobile app, which allows learners to engage with content on-the-go from their iPhones. The app is a fantastic resource, keeping users engaged with timely reminders to continue their educational pursuits.

Screenshot of the iPS photo courses app.
You can use the CamGuru app to take all your iPS courses on the go.

In summary, for those serious about mastering Instagram and cultivating a distinctive online presence, this course promises to be an invaluable resource. Keep an eye on PhotoWorkout.com for my detailed progress report, and consider taking this step to transform your digital engagement on Instagram.

Instagram Academy Review Summary

Instagram Academy by iPhone Photography School
PhotoWorkout Mascot PhotoWorkout’s Rating: 5/5
Instagram Academy

The Instagram Academy by iPhone Photography School offers a comprehensive suite of modules tailored to enhance your Instagram presence and photography skills.
Expertly led by renowned photographer Hannah Argyle, this course spans everything from foundational photography techniques to advanced content creation and community engagement, all through the lens of an iPhone.
The course structure promises substantial value for both budding and seasoned photographers looking to leverage Instagram for artistic and professional growth.

Course Duration: 4.5 hours
$99 | 80% Off (Normally $495)
Pros
  • High-quality video and audio production
  • Engaging community with fast response times
  • Practical and actionable Instagram growth strategies
  • Comprehensive content covering all aspects of Instagram content creation
  • Mobile learning through the iPS app with learning reminders
Cons
  • The course layout may be intensive for beginners
  • Requires commitment to follow through the entire curriculum

Here is a detailed break-up of what you will learn once you sign-up for the Instagram Academy:

Module 1: Building your Personal Brand

The first module teaches viewers how to develop their photographic style and personal brand on Instagram. It discusses techniques for creating a distinctive aesthetic through understanding light, color, composition, and editing.

The instructor, Hannah, shares insights from her 10-year career as a professional photographer and content creator on Instagram.
The course covers setting up an Instagram profile, planning a gallery, using different post formats (stories, reels, static posts, carousels), maximizing engagement and reach, and capturing meaningful moments. The video lessons highlight the importance of authenticity, consistency, and finding inspiration from other photographers’ work.

Module 1 Highlights

Instagram Academy Module 1

Introduction to the Instagram Academy Course

The video introduces the Instagram Academy course, which aims to teach viewers how to hone their photographic style and develop their personal brand on Instagram. The instructor, Hannah, a professional photographer and content creator for over 10 years, shares her knowledge and insights gained from building her career on Instagram.

Course Overview and Objectives

The course covers ways to create a distinctive and recognizable aesthetic through understanding light, color, composition, and developing a consistent editing style. It will guide you on setting up a distinctive Instagram profile, planning your gallery, and using different post formats effectively. The course also explores using Instagram as a visual diary to capture meaningful moments.

The Evolution of Instagram

Module one discusses the history of Instagram, which started as a simple photo-sharing app with vintage filters in 2010. It highlights the app’s growth, the introduction of new features like stories and reels, and the shift towards video content. Despite these changes, the instructure emphasizes the importance of staying true to one’s style and authenticity.

Defining Your Strengths and Target Audience

The first step in developing a strong Instagram presence is to define your strengths by identifying what you enjoy photographing and have access to.
Next, consider your target audience and who you want to connect with or appeal to, whether it’s other photographers or potential clients. Answering these questions will help deliver content that resonates with your audience.

Developing a Unique Aesthetic

The lessons in the first module provide guidance on developing a unique aesthetic by analyzing your existing body of work, identifying recurring colors, compositions, and styles you’re drawn to.
The module concludes by discussing color theory, complementary and analogous colors, and how color choices can evoke specific emotions. One lesson also showcases examples of photographers with consistent and recognizable aesthetics.

Module 2: Mastering Instagram

Instagram Academy Module 2

Module 2 covers various aspects of creating engaging content on Instagram, including setting up a profile, posting photos and videos (carousels, reels, stories), planning an aesthetic feed, finding inspiration, and maintaining creativity. It provides detailed instructions on using Instagram’s features effectively, such as writing bios, choosing profile pictures, editing videos, adding music and effects, and creating story highlights.

This module emphasizes consistency in branding, aesthetic appeal, and storytelling across different content formats. It also offers tips on curating content, interacting with the audience, and leveraging the platform’s algorithm for better visibility.

Module 2 Highlights

Setting up an Instagram profile

Hannah, the instructure, discusses how to set up an engaging Instagram profile, including choosing an attention-grabbing profile picture that represents your style, writing a concise and effective bio, adding relevant keywords and location tags for searchability, and linking external websites or profiles. It also covers the differences between personal, business, and creator accounts, and the benefits of each.

Posting photos and carousels

One lesson explains the process of posting single photos and carousels (multiple photos in one post) on Instagram. It covers selecting photos, editing options, writing captions, adding hashtags and locations, and saving drafts. It also discusses the benefits of carousels, such as telling a more comprehensive story, experimenting with different styles, and potentially increasing engagement through the algorithm.

Creating reels (short videos)

Module 1 also provides guidance on creating eye-catching reels (short videos) on Instagram. It covers finding inspiration from existing reels, using templates and trending music tracks, editing video clips, adding effects and transitions, and maintaining consistency with your overall branding and aesthetic. It also explains how to download reels without watermarks for cross-posting on other platforms.

Posting stories and story highlights

Another video lesson discusses creating engaging stories on Instagram, which disappear after 24 hours. It covers adding text, music, stickers, polls, and interactive elements to stories, as well as saving stories as permanent highlights on your profile. It also provides tips on organizing highlights effectively and creating custom highlight covers to maintain a cohesive aesthetic.

Planning an aesthetic feed

The video emphasizes the importance of planning your Instagram feed for a consistent aesthetic appeal. It introduces apps like Planoly that allow you to arrange and preview your future posts, ensuring a visually appealing flow of colors, tones, and compositions. It also suggests strategies for introducing variety while maintaining a cohesive style.

Finding inspiration and maintaining creativity

The final lesson in the second module offers advice on finding inspiration and maintaining creativity as a content creator on Instagram. It recommends exploring the Instagram Explore page, saving and organizing inspiring content, revisiting your own past work, stepping away from photography occasionally, and returning to the basics that initially sparked your creativity. Hannah also discusses using Instagram’s search and location features to discover new content and ideas.

Module 3: Techniques for Superior Instagram Content

Module three of the Instagram Academy covers various techniques for elevating visual content creation, particularly on Instagram. It discusses the importance of understanding light, composition, and color theory to craft compelling images and videos. The video lessons delve into storytelling through photography, capturing intentional and visually compelling moments, making the most of unplanned situations, posing people naturally, and editing for consistency. It also explores videography, piecing together clips effectively, and using music and templates to enhance storytelling.

Module 3 Highlights

Instagram Academy Module 3

Introduction to elevating visuals

The video introduces the importance of creating top-quality visual content that showcases the best of one’s abilities. It emphasizes the need to learn fundamental techniques to gain consistency, such as understanding light, composition for social media, capturing picture-perfect moments, and storytelling techniques.

Shooting in natural light

This lesson discusses the advantages and challenges of shooting in natural light. It covers the different types of natural light, such as golden hour, harsh light, and soft light. It provides tips on metering light, adjusting exposure, and finding the best light for photography, including using clouds as natural filters and shooting through windows.

Composition for social media

This chapter focuses on effective compositions for social media, particularly vertical formats. It covers the rules of composition, such as the rule of thirds, leading lines, central compositions, and negative space. It also discusses techniques for framing shots, considering perspectives, and cropping for Instagram’s 4:5 aspect ratio.

Crafting intentional and visually compelling moments

This lesson explores the art of crafting intentional and visually compelling moments in photography. It discusses the concept of staging and the importance of understanding light and composition. It provides tips on using window light, arranging props, and interacting with elements to create engaging compositions. It also covers revisiting locations for better conditions and preparing for the perfect shot.

Storytelling in photography

This lesson delves into the art of storytelling in photography. It discusses the importance of having a clear subject matter, evoking mood and atmosphere through color theory, and using techniques like leading lines and color pops to guide the viewer’s eye. Hannah also covers using human interactions, facial expressions, and perspectives to convey emotions and immerse the viewer in the experience.

Making the most of unplanned moments

This lesson focuses on capturing unplanned moments and harnessing the beauty of spontaneity. It covers techniques for dealing with challenging weather conditions, such as rain and low light, and using features like Live Photos to capture fleeting moments. It also discusses anticipating settings, being prepared, and familiarizing oneself with quick access features on the iPhone.

Posing people in photos

Another very important lesson provides tips for posing people naturally in photos, including oneself, family, friends, and kids. It suggests using props or objects for interaction, finding comfortable positions, and capturing candid moments. It also covers techniques for movement, perspective, and background considerations to create engaging and authentic portraits.

Editing for consistency

This chapter explores achieving consistency in one’s work through editing. It discusses the importance of finding and staying true to one’s style, adjusting colors, saturation, and hue, using presets, and batch editing for cohesive galleries. It also covers cropping techniques, such as creating vertical carousels for landscape photos, and using tools like Lightroom Mobile for comprehensive editing.

Videography and storytelling

This final lesson in module 3 introduces videography and how well-crafted short videos can engage viewers. It discusses using video for storytelling, capturing details like movement and atmosphere, and considering the big picture and small details. It also covers techniques like using Live Photos, stabilization, and tripods, as well as piecing together clips effectively using wheels, templates, and music.

Module 4: Tips for Growing your Instagram Following

The final module, module 4, covers various aspects of using Instagram effectively as a photographer. It discusses engaging with followers, writing compelling captions, utilizing hashtags and location tags, maintaining consistency in posting, showcasing your portfolio, and considering other social media platforms. The video lessons in this module aim to help course participants grow their audience, increase engagement, and find inspiration while emphasizing responsible social media usage and prioritizing genuine connections over follower counts.

Module 4 Highlights

Instagram Academy Module 4

Engaging with your followers

One lesson emphasizes the importance of engaging with your followers and the people you follow on Instagram. It highlights the benefits of building a community, sharing ideas, finding inspiration and encouragement from fellow creatives. The instructor demonstrates how to reply to comments, follow back, and initiate conversations through direct messages.

Writing captions

Another video lesson provides tips on writing engaging captions for your Instagram posts. It suggests adding a personal touch, sharing behind-the-scenes stories, using quotes, or showcasing your personality through humor. The instructor shares examples of different caption styles and recommends keeping captions concise yet conversational to encourage interaction.

Using hashtags and location tags

The lesson explains the purpose of hashtags and location tags, and how to effectively utilize them to increase visibility on Instagram. It covers strategies for finding relevant hashtags, checking their functionality, and adding location tags to posts and stories. The instructor demonstrates the process of adding hashtags and location tags while posting a photo.

Maintaining consistency in posting

Hannah discusses the benefits of maintaining consistency in posting content on Instagram. It suggests setting realistic posting goals, varying content types (e.g., static posts, Reels), and repurposing or resharing older content. The instructor emphasizes the importance of consistency in building an online presence, maintaining an audience, and fostering creativity.

Showcasing your portfolio and using other platforms

The final lesson explores using Instagram as a portfolio to showcase your work as a photographer. It compares Instagram with other social media platforms like TikTok, highlighting their strengths and limitations.
The instructor advises focusing on the platform that best aligns with your goals and content style, while considering cross-posting to reach new audiences.

Transform Your Instagram: Concluding Thoughts on the Instagram Academy Course

In conclusion, the Instagram Academy course by iPhone Photography School, led by the insightful Hannah Argyle (see her Instagram account), offers a rich and comprehensive pathway to mastering Instagram for both personal and professional enrichment.

From fundamental photography skills to advanced content creation techniques, this course provides all the tools necessary to enhance one’s digital presence significantly.

Whether you’re looking to refine your aesthetic, boost engagement, or expand your understanding of this powerful platform, the Instagram Academy promises to be a transformative educational experience.

About the Author
Close-up portrait of Andreas De Rosi, founder of PhotoWorkout.com

Andreas, with a background in economics and marketing, heads PhotoWorkout's editorial team in Berlin. Starting his photography with film at 14, he's developed his craft through courses and hands-on experience, focusing on travel photography. Currently using a Fuji X-S20 among other cameras, Andreas blends academic and practical insights to shed light on the latest trends in photography. Connect with him on Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

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