Back in the day, all video on Instagram was square. This simple app preserved the original aspect ratio (now a default thing in the official app).

Instagram is cool, video is cool, square video on Instagram is not very cool. So at AWP (and with help from Scott Nelson) I decided to do something about it. In reality, the video is still square, but instead of cropping in on the center of the frame, we scale the video down to fit in a square (tall or wide). It is simple and efficient, on both technical and functional (visual) levels. I conceptualized and designed Instawide with Piction in the back of my head as a metric for complexity and the purpose for the app’s existence. *It has since been replaced by default Instagram functionality and is offline.

Previewing non-destructive filters.
Previewing non-destructive filters.

Much like the app, the website I designed and built follows a very simple aesthetic and organization of content. Since Instawide is inherently not complex, there was no need for the website to be any different. I was happy to use html video in a few places. The footage I used is raw iPhone video that hasn’t been altered at all.

The entire site is offline, because the functionality we created has basically replaced by Instagram’s default options.

I wrote a little more about it on the AWP blog. We’ve had a lot of fun using and sharing it. Here is the old site, for historical purposes.

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