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Every content creator from bloggers to businessmen have their tools.  Lately I’ve become wildly enamoured with Instagram.

There is something exotic, almost inexplicable about a moment.  How it trickles into being.  A surreal sense that something is happening to you, part of your brain is watching it happen and then your memory fires to capture it.

That’s Instagram.  It’s the kind of tool that’s a revolving map to those collective moments.  How they all add up to where you are and what you’re experiencing.

I recall many a time when I’d encounter a person or a scene, turn to the air and ask “Did you just see that?”   The stubborn air always kept silent.

Now you can see it.  Share it. And ‘like’ it.  Instagram may seem narcissistic, a venue for bad photographers to look capable or full of pointless dog photos, but I enjoy its immediacy.

As a traveler, events accelerate so quickly for me that it’s comforting to know when I’m decrepit and my mind is fading that the things I experienced are archived.  That they did exist.

As for the company itself, creators Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger launched Instagram on October 6, 2010.  By day one, there were 25,000 users signed up.  By February of 2011, Instagram was valued at 25 million.  Their product kept growing as Twitter and Facebook users uploaded the play-by-play of their lives at an exponential speed.

Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook had been watching them since the beginning and always anticipated the two companies melding together.  By the time Facebook was ready to buy, 30 million iPhone users were using the app.  I highly recommend reading a Vanity Fair feature on the inception and denouement when Facebook finally purchased Instagram.

On a deeply personal note, I follow certain people who take freaking stunning photographs or tell a story or simply prod me to take better photos.

The five I love right now…

1. Sarah Mica – Photographer

Sarah is a Boston based portrait photographer who seamlessly captures the human figure or leads me through the city she loves. Beantown.

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Her feed: instagram.com/sarahmica.

2.  Marie-Eve Vallieres – Travel Blogger and Photographer

Marie has the ability to make me ache all over.  Her timeless photos of Paris allow me to relive some intimate moments I’ve had with Parisian architecture.  She bewitches by beautifully documenting whatever European city or town she’s in with style and a loving eye.

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Her feed: instagram.com/mevallieres.

3.  Jenny Gao – China Food and Culture Extradanoire

I love food, saviour every succulent morsel that enters my mouth, but I think you know this blog isn’t a foodie source.  I toss words, not salads.  Since I’ve been in China, I’ve faithfully followed Jenny.  She was born in Chengdu, a well of gastronomy.  Her passion is how food and culture connects all of us.  My dormant foodie lives vicariously through her feed and her photos on Chinese life always fascinate.

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Her feed: instagram.com/jingtheory.

4.  The Life Escape - Travel Bloggers and Photographers

I just started following Denis and K.T., a couple who left the financial world to travel for at least a year.  While it seems a tiresome story (including my own).. Escape the chains of a sealed office existence and burst onto the globe with exuberance!!!  With yet another travel blog [sighhhhh].. Their photos are laced with discovery and there’s nothing wrong with that.  It forces me to drop my shell, that cynical outer self I tend to cart around unchecked at times.  They use really interesting angles that feel realistic to me.  I tend to view a structure about a kazillion meters taller than me from strange angles — almost sideways sometimes.  I like their perspectives on architecture.

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Their feed: instagram.com/thelifescape.

5. Kristin Lajeunesse – Vegan Food Blogger

Okay, so perhaps I really am a foodie wannabe, but here’s my deal with food.  I sooo relish eating it, despise preparing it.  If I had a food preparation officer at the ready, my culinary experiences would be wide open.  Since September 2011, Kristin has been living in her van from donations to fulfill her mission — to eat at every vegan restaurant in the U.S.  What amazes me about her photos is the food in them are meat and dairy free (sometimes gluten too!), but always, always look mouthwatering.  Some of the dishes she shares have me wagging my tongue.  This blows chunks at the idea that eating vegan has to be tasteless and dull.  Her on-the-road images are also adorable.

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 Her feed: instagram.com/wtfveganfood.

If you want to follow my feed, go here: instagram.com/nomadicchick.

Who are you following on Instagram lately?  And why?  Feel free to share their link in the comments.

Editor’s note: any photos used to depict each Instagram feed are not owned by me whatsoever, but by each photographer featured here.