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Photo by @smallstepsaregiantleaps
greetings earthlings. this is 7-year-old kid astronaut and first-grader harrison sheldon. 🚀he’s the star of @smallstepsaregiantleaps , a photo project that his dad, editorial photographer and nonprofit media consultant aaron sheldon, started when harrison was 4 years old.
instagram: aaron, is there a game attached to the project?
aaron: when we decide to visit a place for the project, we talk about what we might see there. during our visit, i have harry compare what we thought we might see with the actual experience. my favorite part of each shoot is hearing his thoughts about the places and what he liked about each place as we look at the pictures together over a post-mission doughnut, cookie or ice-cream cone.
ig: astronaut harrison, what’s the best part of being an astronaut?
harrison: exploring places, meeting astronauts, bouncing on hotel beds, having cool exploring gear and snacks.
ig: astronaut harrison, what do you want to be when you grow up?
harrison: superhero.
aaron: what if your plan to create your own superpowers doesn’t work out? what would you be if you can’t be a superhero?
harrison: police officer and construction worker in space.
check out today’s story to explore along with harrison and aaron on some of their adventures.

2 days ago comment 13,508 star 938k

Featured photo by @hirokingraphy
weekend hashtag project: #whpnaturallight this weekend the challenge is to make images and videos that are illuminated with natural light, as in this photo from hiroki (@hirokingraphy ).
start with the light source. sunlight, moonlight or even starlight set the tone for different images, whether a landscape under the star-filled sky or a beach scene on a bright sunny day. more abstract effects of light can be found in rainbow light or a mass of fireflies dancing in the dark.
scout your location. look for places where light has a more dramatic effect, whether coming in shards through trees in a forest, bouncing off of a reflective building, glistening on the surface of a lake or pool, or simply coming through a window to add shape and contrast to your subject.
time it right. think about the time of day and how the quality of light affects your subject or scene. whether the soft hazy light at dawn, the hard shadows of the midday sun or the colors at sunset, use these qualities of light to set the mood and atmosphere of your images or video.
project rules: please add the #whpnaturallight hashtag only to photos and videos shared over this weekend and only submit your own visuals to the project. by adding the #whpnaturallight hashtag, you consent to and grant instagram all rights to repost your photo or video. if you include music in your video submissions, please only use music to which you own the rights. any tagged photo or video shared over the weekend with the #whpnaturallight hashtag is eligible for the project and, if selected, to be featured next week.

3 days ago comment 13,753 star 2m

Video by @aleia
you would not know it from the creepy cast of characters in her miniature scenes, but aleia murawski (@aleia ) didn’t always love bugs. “snails were my gateway to overcoming my fear of creepy crawlers… except centipedes still kind of freak me out,” explains the 29-year-old artist, who found three pet snails with her friend and collaborator sam copeland a few years ago. “after watching the snails, we started to personify them and began imagining little worlds to build around them.” now, all the stars of aleia’s scenes have a home in her unique family: there are the star snails, noodle and buddy, the praying mantises, deborah and barbara, and even a frog named froggo.
“my work is about the everyday, but it is also about imagining other possibilities,” explains aleia. “the stories feel limitless, no matter how mundane. working with snails has allowed me to process my own world and reinterpret my reality. creating a scene with a snail up all night alone in the office, or two snails driving off into the sunset, helps me turn my own stress and intuitions into something playful and tangible.” aleia’s parting words for the instagram community? “a snail can do anything, and so can you.”
see more of her creepy cast in action on today’s story and our igtv channel. 🐌🖤👽

4 days ago comment 10,750 star 490k

Photo by @jsnjnr
rising to the occasion for #whplayers

5 days ago comment 20,616 star 686k

Photo by @freyaeverafter_
the birds roam free in rupa sutton’s (@freyaeverafter_ ) bedroom. “while the feathers on the surface are absolutely beautiful to see, there’s a whole layer underneath that’s hidden until they fluff up for preening or bathing,” says rupa of her birds sprig and willow. “the hidden colors are some of the most intense. it’s truly a special treat to get a glimpse of them.” #whplayers

5 days ago comment 6,370 star 996k

Photo by @rkrkrk
after multiple attempts to capture mount fuji over the years, ryosuke kosuge (@rkrkrk ) captured his dream shot. 🗻 “my photography style is ‘dense,’” says the photographer from tokyo, “which predominantly captures lots of information and density.” follow along as we feature more of our favorite submissions to last weekend’s hashtag project, #whplayers.

5 days ago comment 18,790 star 3m

Photo by @pingoeninadalmatians
hello, world! today’s #weeklyfluff stars two spotted pals: pingo and nina (@pingoeninadalmatians ). they have some big differences: pingo hates to get dirty and nina loves the mud. pingo loves to sleep; nina loves cognitive games. but, even still, they’re best friends. “dalmatians are happy dogs,” explains pingo and nina’s human, adriana, “full of personality and always ready to adventure, whether on the beach, in the mud, in the grass, with a ball or with just a twig.”
check out today’s story and our igtv channel to see what life is like in rio for this pair.

5 days ago comment 9,003 star 1m

Photo illustration by @sophiejanephoto
sophie jane (@sophiejanephoto ) captured this photo of her son after a trip to maungauika/north head historic reserve, a former military defense site in auckland, new zealand, with a series of underground tunnels. “my son had been soaking up all the history of the place and was standing inside one of the forts afterwards quietly considering it all,” says the photographer. “the underground tunnels are very eerie, and i wanted to bring some of that feeling to the image. i knew superimposing a reflection of the scene my son might have been imagining would be perfect for adding dimension and telling a story.” #whplayers

6 days ago comment 5,433 star 634k

Photo by @david.sowa
the annual chicago transit authority’s holiday train stars in photographer david sowa’s (@david.sowa ) #whplayers photo. “watching the train light up its surroundings combined with the added ‘layer’ of snow really made it that much more magical,” says david, who waited for about 30 minutes on a parking garage for the perfect shot.

6 days ago comment 6,581 star 966k

Photo by @jimchanfc
“this is the amount of cats i’ll have in the future if i don’t get a girlfriend right now,” writes jimmy chan (@jimchanfc ) in the caption to his #whplayers submission. yes, jimmy, there’s a lot of layers to this one. 😻

6 days ago comment 7,207 star 920k

Photo by @ivanbaaaaah
“makeup has definitely helped me realize who i am and who i want to be,” says ivan lam (@ivanbaaaaah ). “it’s helped me express what i truly feel inside on the outside. that’s super important to me. i think everybody should be able to express themselves fully without judgment. i’m so glad that i got to do this with makeup. it’s been a journey, and it’s definitely helped me a lot as a person.” 💄💋
watch ivan’s #howtoselfie tutorial on today’s story, and learn more about his connection to makeup on igtv.

6 days ago comment 7,068 star 515k

Video by @zakthebaker
the driving force behind zak stern’s — better known as @zakthebaker — love of baking? craftsmanship. “it’s not so much about me expressing myself through one-of-a-kind creations,” explains zak. “it’s more about reaching towards perfection through practice and repetition and in service to the community.” right now, zak and his team are baking a lot of babka in his miami bakery for #hanukkah.
“we make this babka every day, mixing, filling, braiding, proofing, baking. and each day we’re trying to get that perfect, creamy honeycomb crumb with the perfect balance of crispy, crunchy crust. then, poof, it’s gone. someone buys it, and they hopefully enjoy it. and we start the whole process over again the next day. this is what i love about craftsmanship: it’s a journey. it’s a never-ending pursuit of trying to make each day better than before.”
learn more about zak (and his babka) on our igtv channel.

1 weeks ago comment 7,084 star 490k