In a virtual world full of content, profiles and channels, first impressions matter. We’re now in the metaverse, where your Instagram page is most likely the first point of contact for your audience. This is where they find you, this is where they communicate with you, so it’s important to dress up your facade and make it visually captivating. Have you ever visited those profiles where you take one look and it’s immediately satisfying or calming to look at? That’s the objective of a grid. To find an aesthetic, to provide a certain look and feel that’ll pull users in, to make them explore and engage.
Pick your Brand
Think about what your brand represents. Do you set a playful tone or one that makes people think? Do you come off as quirky or chic? What do you want your audience to feel when they’re on your page? What are your brand colours? Does the font pair with the mood you want to set for your page? Are you going to post photos/videos or illustrations? Or is it mostly going to be textual content? These are questions you want to ask yourself before you go about uploading. Pick your niche, work on your brand design and visualize a mood board. A random, haphazard sequence of posts will only give you an unorganized, claustrophobic grid.
Create a Mood Board
There are hundreds of software out there that can help you visualize what you want your Instagram grid to look like. The first is Instagram itself. Create a fake, private account and dry run your posts to see if they fit well and complement each other. It’s the easiest way to go. You could also try Canva, Illustrator of Photoshop to get a bird’s eye view of your grid. Pro tip: There often comes a point when you want to gradually transition from a certain colour/theme. Test it out on your boards before you hit that upload button.
Here are some examples of various aesthetics that have been tried and tested. They’ve been known to be soothing, appealing and engaging. If you think it works for you, try and recreate them. We’ll tell you how!
The Classic Black & White
This one never gets old. It gives your page a classy, chic attire and can easily assert a certain level of professionalism into your brand. It sends a powerful message and so, is generally used for photography profiles. You can work with different textures and different levels of black and white if you’re looking for a range in this theme.
The Colour Pop
This aesthetic offers the opposite of a B&W one. It’s fun, quirky and playful. It spreads cheerfulness and youth. It’s attention-grabbing and easy going. If that’s your brand, look into some bright colours and fun fonts. Keep off the tints, they might harsh your buzz.
The White Border
The white border theme works best when your user has their Dark Mode turned off. It utilizes the concept of white space and gives a neat, yet carefree look. It highlights your photos and gives them space to breathe. @dia_tsy uses it for landscape and portrait photography. Just keep the Instagram post dimensions in mind and resize your photos a percentage shorter (vertically or horizontally).
The Minimalist Grid
Being minimal is the most in thing today. It gives your grid a clean finish while keeping it light and classy. It doesn’t come off as attention-seeking but it draws your users in with sleek lines and soft colours. It’s a risky aesthetic if you’re not confident about your designs and photos, but if you pull it off, it’s got a high reach. @9minimal7 experiments with colours yet manage to not suffocate the grid. There is a clear symmetry and calmness in the designs, it does not brag a heavy disposition but it sends across a deep messaging. It’s a high risk, high reward type of aesthetic.
The Puzzle Grid
If you don’t like being fit into boxes, you don’t have to! Don’t stick to the Instagram post dimensions. Expand out of the box and take over the grid. The puzzle aesthetic has you scrolling through the whole page because each post is part of a bigger picture. As individual images on your users’ feed, they may look confusing but when the puzzle pieces fit together on the profile page, it’s a gratifying feeling. Check out @betty.pistoletty’s grid below where she tries to centre most of the main image in a single post but she stretched some of the other elements onto the grid. What a rule breaker, we love it!
The Same Filter
Being monotonous is not such a bad thing, especially when it comes to your Instagram grid. Using the same set of colours and the same filter on your photos gives you a pleasing aesthetic. It spreads a sense of familiarity and warmth across your page. @grunge_kay goes for the grunge look and chooses moody colours and tints. The page also has a highlight section with a small tutorial on how the photos are edited.
The Pastel Look
Pastels became quite trendy in 2021. These colours are lighthearted, yet classy. They’re not loud, they’re not bold, and they offer a subtlety to the grid. @gf_photo_images has a certain niche. It’s a sunset photography page that shows off a round-robing queue of pastel colours of pinks, oranges and blues blending with varied consistencies. The pastel theme is often used for artsy pages like modern photography or interior design.
The Illustrative Grid
This is a grid that contains textual content in the mix. It’s important here that the font and colour maintain consistency. It’s used for educational pages that seek to add value to their users. @cavinaarianna achieves a pattern of photo-text-text on her grid and generates content based on that. It’s pleasing to the eye and it’s informative!
The Tile Grid
This one sports a similar design in every alternate post. It helps you tread a whole other design template for the same page. You can alternate between a photo and a quote or an illustration and a reel. @desynovadigital does the latter. They keep their pink and white theme on every odd post and add a reel to follow that. It’s a popular aesthetic that can set two different moods and yet look like one brand.
Your Instagram Aesthetic is uniquely you. This is a chance to express yourself or your brand in the way you like and the way you want to be received through your photos and videos. Go ahead, use our guide to flaunt who you really are on social media!