Hashtag Movement: Streetwear and Instagram Flexin’ are a Match Made in Heaven

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Streetwear stuntin’ and flexin’ hopped onto a next level tip with the introduction of Instagram profile-turned-movement, @outfitfromabove. With a posted following close to 33,000 followers –and a majority of that steady growth gained in 2014 — the movement provides a platform that is equal parts showcasing personal style and mobile photography prowess. Founder of @outfitfromabove, among other notable handles with the same focus on design and aesthetics, Alan G., has created a service that harbors multiple avenues of visual creativity in one fell swoop, encouraging the curation of walking, instantaneous editorials by way of camera phones and mobile apps. We got a chance to talk with Alan about #outfitfromabove, fashion trends and turning an everyday ritual into free advertising — just kidding. Hit the jump for the full interview.

5th Element Mag: First off, for our readers who aren’t familiar with you, can you introduce yourself? What do you do and how did you come about creating TODAYSHYPE, the blog and Instagram handle?

Alan G.: My name is Alan G., I do a lot of different things but in the end, I just like to create fresh and fly stuff for the culture. TODAYSHYPE came about, honestly, from just being bored and wanting to do something productive in that lane. I know there are tons of different sneaker/fashion blogs out there, but this is just my personal point of view on what I think deserves shine and attention in the culture. I know some of the other huge establishments have a large staff behind the scenes working around the clock, but this is just a one-man project that focuses on the “less is more” ideology and feeding out the filler material; the small idea and movement has turned into something dope I think, and hopefully it continues progressing into the future.

5th: How were you first introduced to Instagram?

A: I first got into Instagram a little bit after it started. For a while it was just something that was a private and personal thing, but has now transitioned into something completely different. Instagram is hands down one of the best mediums out there for visual creativity in my opinion, and I get inspired by at least one thing every day I see other peoples point of view.

5th: You are currently responsible for five Instagram handles – with @outfitfromabove being the most popular – that have sprouted an Instagram movement, of sorts. How did you come up with idea for @outfitfromabove? Did you think @outfitfromabove would get as big as it is now?

A: @outfitfromabove has definitely become a movement that has been not only a surprise, but very humbling. The idea was very organic and just came from personal shots I used to take on the daily of my outfit I was feeling; I just saw a void in the culture for something like this and thought maybe it would catch on at some point. No way did I think it would then become what it has now. It has gained a great following so far but I’m looking to take it to the next level this year, fingers crossed.

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5th: @outfitfromabove seems to be the largest promoter of the high fashion x streetwear trend, what is it about this movement that seems so Instagram-friendly?

A: I think it may be that the process of taking a picture in the @outfitfromabove format is so simple and easy to do. Honestly there is no reason why anyone can’t participate in the movement and submit a dope shot. We all want to look fly and @outfitfromabove is just another medium to share that with the world.

5th: For your own photos, what photo-editing apps do you use? It appears across all of the platforms, the goal is to maintain a clean, editorial look in the photos you repost. What are your thoughts on mobile photography, and how it has evolved through Instagram?

A: I personally only use VSCOcam —  the combination of simple filters and clean interface is impossible to beat. I definitely try to keep anything that I repost as clean as possible, that’s very true. Everything, no matter what it is, needs to have a certain level of standards to represent the brands or movement the right way. I’m a big believer in all mobile photography when it comes to Instagram. I know a lot of people use it to post professional photography and stuff like that, which is dope too, but the whole reason Instagram was created is to share your mobile photography — which is why pages like @outfitfromabove and @mobilesneakers seem to connect with the people so well.

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5th:
What are some of your favorite sneakers out now? Are there some sneakers that you think are more visually appealing for mobile photography?

A: My favorite sneakers of all time are the Air Jordan 1 and Adidas Stan Smith — if I could have a closet full of those two shoes in every color I wouldn’t wear anything else the rest of my life. To me those are the most versatile and clean shoes of all time that you can wear in almost any situation. Any shoe can be visually appealing for mobile photography with the right creative eye behind the trigger. I’ve often run across several examples of shoes I would never wear or purchase myself that people have taken crazy shots of, so there’s no discrimination here.

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5th: @basic_boyz, the newest fashion handle, focuses on the trend of simple looks, clean lines. Compared with the 80s and 90s, where looks and trends were much louder, why do you think fashion now is reverting to more simple, basic looks?

A: I think the basic and simple look is just something that is very versatile and clean. What’s not to love about an outfit that is timeless, regardless if you’re looking at it now or 20 years from now? I know a lot of people use fashion as a form of expression, so you will always see crazy loud and vibrant styles (which is dope too) but for me, I’ve always gravitated more towards keeping things basic, clean and timeless with everything that I do. I hate to sound like a Kanye Stan but one lyric he had always reigns true for me: “When you try hard, that’s when you die hard”.

5th: It is pretty clear that @mobilesneakers and @basic_boyz stemmed from @outfitfromabove handle, how did you come with the idea for @appleandcoffee?

A: @appleandcoffee just came from two of my favorite things that I’ve always loved: Apple is one of the few brands and companies that has really transformed and changed the world, and coffee is a daily vice for me and something I have to have to start my day off right. I figured I know some people may start their day with a cup of their favorite brew and browsing their favorite website or getting to work on some project, so why not take this ritual and put a name to it? Everything I do like this is completely organic and comes from a simple idea which then hopefully blossoms into a medium for other people to create and link up with people of the same interests.

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5th:
Is there a specific lifestyle that is collectively represented across all of your the Instagram handles?

A: I wouldn’t say a specific lifestyle or anything, but I would say all I want people to get from the various Instagram handles I’ve had a part in is to just keep creating. Some people may look at Instagram as just a place to post BS stuff on the daily, but it’s really an amazing tool we can use to create dope content and share it with the world. One thing I’ve learned very quickly through all of this is do not underestimate the power of social media.

5th: Who/what are some of your favorite Instagram profiles?

A: There are a lot of great people I consider a must follow if you have the same interests as me: @dennistodisco, @ronniefieg, @careaux, @mr_aznar, @mellowedhigh, just to name a few. Honestly there are too many to list them all, though there are a lot of great feeds out there that I’m sure I haven’t even run across yet.

All photos courtesy of: @oldmanalan

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Nina Tabios

Nina Smoove aka Champagne Ninang. Certified hooligan. $F Bay Area born and bred.

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