Listen to Holly’s Spotify playlist, curated for Vamp:
Let’s get to know @hollyrebeccawhite. Our UK-based influencer of the month shares why you should stop comparing yourself to other creators, tips on how to boost your Reels views and advice on how to style the perfect minimalistic flatly.
Congratulations Holly! We’re so excited to award you as our first influencer of the month for 2022. Your Instagram feed is so beautifully curated. How do you keep it looking so organised and cohesive?
Thank you so much! It’s such a pleasure to have been nominated. My Instagram is such a huge part of what I do and curating it is such a fun part of the process. I use a feed planning app to map out my feed, but the approach begins way before that. I’m very conscious about creating work that’s cohesive, so I will always aim to produce content that I know will fit well together within those little squares. That normally involves using similar equipment, lighting and the same editing process to curate a feed where each post compliments each other.
What are some of your best tips for getting the perfect lighting when shooting campaign content?
I like my work to have a soft, natural feel to it. So I love to use natural lighting for that. This relies on learning what time of day is the best to shoot, which can be hard here in the UK when the dark winter weather comes! I find it best to try out different angles, take test shots and see what lighting looks best for the shot I’m creating. More often than not, I love my images to be lit from the front to highlight my subject. It’s also a good idea to remember to utilise your equipment and adjust the aperture and exposure if needed.
Your Reels are absolutely stunning! What does your creative process look like when creating one?
Thank you! I love creating Reels and especially love working on more editorial Reels, such as the one I worked on for Vamp’s Ted Baker campaign.
Depending on the kind of Reel I’m shooting, the process can vary. Sometimes I just shoot day-to-day clips on my phone, and put them together in a more casual video setting using a phone app. However, most of my Reels are shot on my DSLR camera and, through the practice of finding what locations and aesthetics work best for my set up and style, I’ve found a variation of methods that I like to work with.
For example, for an outfit Reel, I will plan out the outfits that need to be included and shoot them one by one. This could be shot with a more open backdrop in my bedroom, or one of my favourite ways to shoot these is through the reflection of my mirror as it feels more stylised.
Once I’m happy with the clips that I’ve shot, ensuring that the focus is correct and the set-up and lighting works well, I will then select a song that I’d like to use and begin editing using a video editing software on my laptop.
Once exported to my phone, I will normally add a preset or filter, or adjust the colour. I like to preview what my content looks like on my phone as a final check, as this is where the content will be seen by others. It’s then ready to be uploaded to Instagram!
What tips can you give to other creators looking to boost their Reels views?
Boosting your Reels views can be hard and it can be tricky to understand how to get them seen. Two tips I’ve found that work for me are:
#1 To always publish your Reels to your profile, as this ensures it will definitely show up on your audience’s feeds as they scroll.
#2 Check out what sounds and songs are popular on the app at the time. Using a popular sound can help boost engagement as it’s more likely to show up in the Reels feed. I’ve found this has helped my views quite a bit!
We love your moodboard account, @theminimalmoodboard! Why did you create this account and what draws you to minimalism?
The Minimal Moodboard was originally intended to just be my own creative space. It was somewhere for me to share images that inspired me and to get a feel for the kind of images I was drawn to at the time. It’s grown into something I never imagined and it’s so amazing to see the love that it gets! It’s wonderful to get to share like-minded, minimal-loving accounts on the page.
I, myself, have been through so many different style phases over the years, but the one that stuck with me the most has been minimalism. I’ve always loved finding the beauty in the simplest of things and I think over time that translated into my own fashion and way of inspiration. I love the concept of finding a cup of coffee beautiful or having a wardrobe of neutrals that can mould together perfectly. I just love simplicity.
Do you have any tips for other creators who are looking to grow a loyal and engaged Instagram following?
I’ve tried so many different things over the years to keep my account growing, keep up with the trends and keep my followers engaged. I’ve often fallen into the rabbit hole of comparison, thinking that my content has to be like someone else’s to work. But I’ve always found that my account and content have worked best when I’ve just been myself and created what I enjoy. I think that would be my main piece of advice. As cliché as it is, just be yourself. Share things that make YOU happy and that YOU love to create, because it will always resonate with someone out there, and that’s the following you want to have.
It’s great to have loads of followers and a huge number of likes, but I think it’s so important to have a following that is like-minded and truly enjoys you and your content. It’s also great if the content you love to create has a purpose. Whether it’s to share your bold colourful style, your unique interiors, or the books you love to read. It leaves something for people to keep coming back for more.
What are your top tips for shooting the perfect minimalistic flatlay or still-life?
I do really love a beautiful flatlay or still life. One of my obsessions is taking pictures of objects that I find oddly amazing, even if it’s just a vase of flowers.
For flatlays I suggest trying out some different looks, backgrounds and angles. You could be filling the image up with lots of different objects for a really old-school flatlay vibe, or you could keep it simple with one lovely piece that you want to focus on. For a more minimalistic approach, I always feature around three subjects in my flatly content.
Using a plain and simple white backdrop can be really lovely. But also adding in a fabric backdrop, like linen or silk, can feel really chic and add a bit of texture to a previously empty image. Then it’s just about finding the angle you like. A bird’s eye view shot is always good, but it can sometimes be really nice to shoot from the side to capture different textures and shadows.
When it comes to still life, I follow the approach of, “If it looks beautiful through my eyes right now, it’s going to look beautiful on camera.” This isn’t always true, but I’d say it works 90% of the time. I often keep my still-life images simple, shot as they are and letting the camera focus on the thing that caught my eye in the first place.
What is your all-time best performing post on your feed, and why do you think that is?
One of my best performing posts is a self-portrait of me in a coat and a hat – it’s the most random image to have blown up on Instagram, and honestly, I couldn’t explain to you why it’s such a popular post. Maybe it’s the composition, maybe it’s the editing, maybe it was the time of day that I posted it – who knows.
I don’t think there’s any key to understanding why certain posts do so well and others may not. Either way, I love working on my self-portraits, so it’s always amazing when they’re well received. I will say, my top-performing posts are all self-portraits, so maybe there’s a running theme of it being a style people like to see from me.
Quickfire round. Right now I am…
Listening to: Remi Wolf – Juno
Watching: Ugly Betty, for the 3rd time.
Eating: Bagels, I’m addicted right now!
Drinking: Coffee, always.
Wearing: Neutrals, beige… and more neutrals.
Finally, after working on Vamp campaigns for Ted Baker, Russell & Bromley and Huawei, would you recommend Vamp to other creators? If so, why?
Definitely! I would highly recommend Vamp to any creator. There are so many amazing opportunities, collaborations and brands on the app and the team are just brilliant. Each campaign experience has been lovely, with clear briefs, easy communication and always an opportunity to get creative. It’s always a pleasure to use Vamp!