15 Instagram Prompts For When You’ve Hit a Brick Wall

You open the Instagram app (for the twenty-millionth time today) and start scrolling through a feed full of creative, inspiring and well-composed images. You think to yourself that it’s probably about time you post an image or two again, but soon realise that you have nothing.

Maybe it’s just been a busy week, maybe it’s been too dark to take some decent product photos or maybe that creative spark just hasn’t been present of late.

A lot of the time, many of us come up against the age-old problem of not knowing what to snap and post to Instagram. There’s either nothing interesting in eyesight or nothing that means enough. In a time like this, Instagram prompts always aid in that push of creativity when we need it most.

Instagram challenges, like Allison Sadler’s #freeupmyinsta are cornerstones of great Instagram prompts – and they usually work by everyone following one creative prompt each day. I love these challenges but whilst they’re not active, or when you don’t want to take part every day, a good old list of prompts will do me just fine.

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Look Up

Pretty obvious what you need to do here, right? When on a walk, sitting on your bed or enjoying a drink at a coffee shop, just remember to look up. Sometimes they’ll be a beautiful sky, some trendy artwork or just an overused shot at a different angle.

On My Desk

Even if you don’t work at a traditional desk, your dining table, bed or lap can be covered in pens, notebooks or pieces of tech – anything that you use when creating or working on things. I always tend to include my favourite tools of the moment, or some extras that keep me motivated (usually tea, cake or something colourful).

Textured Background

Sometimes an interesting background is a great focus for a picture. Brick walls, fluffy blankets, rustic wooden boards or smooth, glossy tiles. If your subject is a bit same-old try mixing things up with a different background – usually always found somewhere in your house.

What’s For Elevensies?

You all know that I love a flay lay of my hot drink, but it’s more than just a picture of beige water (at least I think so). A snap of your chosen beverage and treats that go alongside it is the perfect set-up for a casual catch up on Instagram. Is it creative gold? Not always – but it does the trick.

On A Postcard

Motivational postcards are all the rage right now and since we probably all have a little collection kicking about, why not make one or two (or all of them) a focal point of a photo? Motivating, funny or even something pointless and pretty… get shooting.

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A Classic Bag Spill

The Instagram bag spill is iconic for a reason. Grab your favourite bag of the moment (bags for life don’t count – but a suitcase could) and sprinkle some appropriate object around it – purses, lip balms or lipsticks, latest read or notebooks, pens or train tickets – spend some time styling and it’ll kill. Promise.

Reflections

No, I’m not saying snap several hundred mirror selfies (but go for it if you like), reflections of buildings or scenes in windows, bodies of water or pretty mirrors make for super creative content. Bonus points if you manage a double-exposure vibe to your images.

{Insert Colour Here}

Every so often I get absolutely enamoured with a certain colour. Right now, it’s orange and guess what? I feel compelled to capture more images with tones and shades of orange. Setting out to capture a particular colour is a not only a challenge but a great way to get creative again.

Hand/Watch/Sleeves

This little combo requires little more than liking whatever top or coat you’re wearing. I’ve taken a few on walks or sitting on a nice chair, often holding a beverage or interesting object. These shots are clean and simple but can be jazzed up no end with layers of sleeves, jewellery and a variety of backgrounds.

From A to B

One way to make getting from A to B more interesting is to find some beauty or interest along the way. Trains or planes obviously bring a lot of visually interesting elements to a photo – but a walk to work can throw up some equally interesting opportunities for an Instagram snap.

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Styled Up Shelfie

Most of us have a shelf or two around the house and with a few tweaks here and there you could have a stunning #shelfie on your hands. I love seeing organised books (preferably in rainbow order), pretty vases, prints, postcards and little trinket trays with said trinkets. The best way to share a lifestyle shot with tonnes of personality.

Against A Wall

Firstly, get your minds out of the gutter. Straight on shots of people or objects against pretty or distinctive walls always look great. I love the classic coffee cup and hands in frame shot, as well as a specific aspect of gorgeous outfits.

Stack It Up

Instead of just barking flat lay at you, stacking items and layering up a flat lay is a much easier jumping off point, don’t you think? Grabbing your favourite book, adding a notebook, a lip balm or sprig of eucalyptus and whallah! A styled up flat lay. You can use this on its own or add it to a larger composition. Stacking is the way forward.

Pretty Packaging

A few things don’t even need styling or dressing up, am I right? Pieces with stunning packaging are whole shots in themselves, be it a Glossier Haul or your Anthropologie purchases falling out of the tissue paper and pretty patterned bag. Let the pretty packaging speak for itself.

Seasonal Close Ups

Close-ups of leaves, steamy hot chocolates, icy cars when it gets frosty or even festive wrapping and decorations. Close-up shots of other bits and bobs that are regular features on your Instagram feed keep your general theme and style together but gives you a few more artsy opportunities.

I’d love to know if you turn to popular prompts and hashtags when you’re struggling on Instagram? If so, then I’d love to know what your favourite prompts are.

Let me know in the comments – I’d love to add a few to my go-to list.

Until next time,

Becky

  • Thank you for this! I really struggle with Instagram so this post is really handy 🙂

    Sammy // sammyetc.com
    xx

  • This is such a good idea for a post Becky! This morning I was actually feeling a bit stuck for Instagram inspiration, so it was the perfect time to read this! xx

    http://www.natalieleanne.com

  • Steph – Wanderlust Pulse

    Tips I can do with when I have my next Insta brain freeze!

    Steph x
    http://www.wanderlustpulse.com

  • These are so great! Gonna save this for when I’m stuck for items. I love the bag spill, pretty packaging, and reflections.
    Great post 🙂
    https://marvelsteph.blogspot.co.nz/

  • Thanks so much for this post, I find Instagram really hard. I don’t have a theme or anything too restrictive but I never know what to post – this is incredibly helpful!
    Beth x Adventure & Anxiety