The Ultimate Guide to gaining 100K Followers on Instagram as an Artist

  • These are tips I as an artist used to grow my following to 100K+ in just a few months. I'm sharing all of them in this very post - it includes how to build a stellar Instagram Profile and posting consistently in a theme. Read the Ultimate Guide on gaining 100K followers on Instagram as an artist.

Before I start, let me clear the air. This is not one of those Get loads of followers on Instagram quickly scheme.

If you’re a budding artist just starting on Instagram (or you’ve been there for some time now), and you really want to grow your reach, because you love doing what you do and you want your art to reach more people, then this post is just for you.

I created an Instagram account sometime in December, 2016. But I only really started posting sometime around June, 2017. I built my following from scratch. It took me 2 months to touch 10K followers. And once I hit that mark, getting to 100K was easy-peasy.


There are a lot of tutorials online that share tips on growing your Instagram account. But most of them may not work for you because you’re an artist.

You upload art.

And by doing this, you and I both fall in a completely different category.

Accept this fact.

So, the tips I’m going to share with you are specifically written for traditional artists/illustrators/comic-artists and so on.

WARNING: This post is slightly long because there’s a lot to consider when growing your Instagram Account.

1. Picking your niche.

Now, not many people tell you this, but as an artist on Instagram, you need to have a particular theme going on. You need to know who your target audience on Instagram is.

You may ask, why?

Because not everyone is going to like what you make. It’s as simple as that.

I’ve blogged before, so I’ve had my very own website and I’ve tried my hand in quite a few things. Let me tell you a very important fact that definitely aided my growth in Instagram. A niche.

My comics are 90% about hair. So, I’ve attracted a crowd that loves to look at comics about curly hair/straight hair.

Therefore, having a niche establishes you as an expert in that particular field, so whatever you do, don’t stray away from your path too much.

I know Comic Artists that focus on just parenting, or just mental health and they do very, very well.


Because they attract an audience that is interested in that one particular thing. The minute they realize that you’re an expert in that field, they’re going to want to log onto Instagram almost every single day and they will look forward to each and every post you publish.

So, decide what it is that you want to really talk about in your art/comics. Be it daily life problems/challenges faced by kids/a doctor’s life, stick to it. You’re free to mix things up once in a while, but have a constant theme.

My target audience on Instagram generally are women between the ages of 18-35 who love laughing about the snippets I make about curly hair/hair in general.

As you can see, it’s very defined. No doubt, there are a few men in my following or children who love reading my comics. But I’m talking about the majority here.

Pick your niche. Know exactly what topic you are focusing on and have a theme.

Examples of a few defined niches:

My friend (and buddy from college) @jeffseq creates comics mostly based on puns.

Having a niche helps you gain a better following on Instagram

Or take @yesimhotinthis, who creates comics that shares her adventures on being a Muslim Woman in America.

Or take @iraville who loves to use watercolors that center around autumn and cozy things.

Having a visually appealing theme on Instagram helps you gain a better following.

Get the drift?

Take your time to find out what it is you love drawing about, and once you have your niche defined, you’re ready to grow your following!

2. Nailing your Instagram Profile.

1. Choose an Instagram Username.

 A name is very important. Aside from your actual name, your username is what will help people identify with your art series or comic series. Therefore, choose a name that is suitable to your niche.

I chose Stray Curls because people will think of hair the second they read it. It was @maryangela1992 before. Not very attractive to be honest. It looked amateurish. And changing the name definitely helped me attract a more stable audience.

2. Upload a relevant Profile Picture.

As an Artist, it is imperative that you let everyone know who you are, the minute they see your profile. The best way to do that, is to have an illustration/artwork as your profile picture. Showcase your style in your profile picture. If possible, draw a character that either resembles you or will feature in your posts multiple times.

This is so that your character becomes recognizable and people are able to identify immediately that it’s you. It helps you stand out and become more authentic to the world.

Now that you’ve changed your profile picture, let’s move on to the bio.

3. Use your full name.

When people see your art and they’re intrigued, the first thing they’ll do is follow you.

Sometimes however, they may be more curious and jump over to your profile to check if you’re legit. Because art is re-posted a lot and people copy and paste other people’s art on their own profiles, so your followers will want to know if you are the original creator.

Upon seeing your profile, they should confirm that you are indeed the creator.

Which is why it is imperative that you write your full name. If you want people to love your art, they need to understand that you created it! That’s what makes it so unique.


People will feel more connected to you when they know that there is a human being behind the art account.

4. Craft an Instagram Bio that speaks your personality.

Instagram doesn’t really let you add a new line for each sentence. It clumps it all together and makes it look very amateurish.

So, open your Notes app. Any app will do.

And type a nice, well thought out bio. You have about 150 characters to your advantage, so use it well. Infuse it with your personality and write something that makes you, you. I use emojis because they’re more colorful than bulletin points.

The first thing you’ll want to mention is that you’re an artist. You can specify which type, if you want to.

5. Use your link wisely.

Instagram lets you add 1 link. This can be to your Patreon account/website/other social media. It helps Instagram identify that you are a valid entity and not just a spam account.

Apart from this, you can also use Link Tree. This is a link to a page where you can upload more links. A lot of people use this and it’s really helpful if you want to showcase all your links.I choose to not use Link Tree because I like to give my followers just one thing to focus on. So I keep switching between links to my shop/website.

6. Use Highlights to get the most out of your profile.

Instagram’s recent feature of adding highlights to your Profile make it easier for people to navigate through your profile and understand you better. You can use the Highlights Section to show a little bit of you and the links you want people to visit.

Here is mine:

How To Craft An Instagram Profile (as an artist)

Here is one amazing profile that I love by @thecuriousjalebi:

She not only uses her Linktree to showcase all her links, but she uses cute little icons to highlight the most important parts of her profile.


3. Stepping out onto the Instagram Business Platform. 

1. Convert to a Business Profile.

I’ve been asked a lot whether converting to a business profile is useful and yes, it is.

You will get access to very important analytics that will help you determine when to post and what to post.

Instagram Analytics will show you the days and times that your posts do extremely well. And based on this, you will understand when to post.

Knowledge is the key to success.

By knowing which day and time my audience was most active, I changed my time of posting. I started posting at 5:00 pm everyday and it dramatically upped my game. If I was gaining 100-200 followers normally, Instagram Analytics helped me gain 1000 followers.

Not only this, but the second you convert to a business profile, a “Contact” button will appear on your profile. Make sure you put in your email address. Because this will help you land commissions. People that love your art/comics will want to get in touch with you and have you do work for them.


Most people turn away when they see they cannot email you. Not everyone is comfortable typing out long DMs (Direct Messages).

2. Create a Facebook page.

If you’ve not done this already, you’re missing out on a lot of followers. Create a Facebook page. It should have the same name as your Instagram Username. My Facebook Page is Stray Curls too.

Connect your Facebook page to your Instagram account. This helps Instagram understand that you are a genuine artist and you’re not just some spammy account posting other people’s pictures. This is the best way to get verified on Instagram.

Now that Instagram and Facebook are connected, you’re on the right track.

3. Allow people (who are interested in similar art) to follow you.

Include your account when reccommending similar accounts on Instagram

Login to your account on your computer, and select the box that says “select similar accounts” This means, that if people are following comic artists in your niche, your name will appear as a suggestion to them and you’ll earn more followers.

Woot woot!

4. Building a consistent brand on Instagram.

1. Have a consistent art style.

If you are still finding your style, it’s okay. Take your time. Don’t rush it.

This is my very first comic.

And this is how my comics look now.

As you can see, it took me a while to find my art style. And that’s totally alright.

It’s okay to experiment and it’s okay to take your time. However, once you discover your art style, stick to it. Make more art. Your style will eventually change, because you’re drawing everyday. But it won’t change to such an extent that it’s not recognizable by your fans.

When people recognize your art, they will search for you because they’ll want to see more of your work. And by having at least 100-200 published pieces of art in the same style, you’re increasing your chances of being found.

2. Create a visually appealing theme.

Now, Instagram is a visual platform. And a lot of people care about the theme and the loveliness of it all. Being an artist, it can be tempting to do many things, but by having a theme, you will attract a lot of followers.

My theme consists of pinks, yellows purples. And I tend to use a lot of these colors in my art for the very same purpose. So apart from my drawing style, people recognize my art with the colors I use.

How To Gain 100K Followers on Instagram as an Artist

3. Take better photos. (If you’re a traditional artist)

Now, if you’re a traditional artist that works with actual tools like pencils and paint-brushes, you need to up your Photography Game. I took this online class on Skillshare that taught me how to take photos of my Drawings. And it was very useful.

Learn how to take better photos on Instagram of your sketches or paintings.

It’s only 50 minutes. Which means, you can learn how to take better photos within an hour.

And it really helped me understand how lighting works and how to take better shots of my sketches. I highly recommend this class because good photos can make a huge impact on your audience and can be the difference between a 100 and 1000 follower gain for each photo you upload.

See the class here.

5. Tips to posting on Instagram.

1.  Post every single day.

I cannot stress on this enough, you guys. Posting everyday boosted my follower growth like crazy.

Instagram sees that you’re active and your posts are more widely shown.

Now, if your art takes you about 14-16 hours to make, and you are unable to post everyday because you’re churning out 1 art piece a week, then that’s okay.


Post WIPs.

For egs, @g_singh_b takes a couple of weeks to create one pencil sketch portrait. But he constantly posts WIPs. Read his descriptions. He keeps his followers in the loop by describing the technique he’s using and the tools. Sometimes, he posts short videos so you can see his hand-movement and the way he applies pressure.

Posting WIPS on Instagram

He has a very engaged following and people look forward to his posts!

I posted almost every day for 6 months straight. i.e. I created a comic/post every single day for six whole months.

Once you’ve gained a good following and you feel you’re established, you can slow things down a notch and post a little less frequently.



2. Posting at the right time.

The Instagram ANALYTICS will help you understand which days your posts are doing well and what is the best time to post. I used to post early in the morning but realizing that my audience is more active at 5:00pm my time, I changed my schedule and noticed a HUGE spike in followers. For me, Wednesdays and Thursdays are really optimum for posting, so I save my BEST comics for those days.

Save your best posts for the days that do really well on Instagram for you. Click To Tweet

3. Spice up your posts.

You need to be a little unpredictable and keep your audience on your toes all the time. I sometimes mix things up by posting a random illustration, or just a thank you note or a blog post image. Post a photo of yourself once in a while or a photo of your workspace.

TIP: It’s easy to run out of ideas, when you don’t keep track of them. Make sure you have a notebook where your write all your ideas down. That way, when you don’t know what to make, you can just browse your notebook.


4. Watermark your art.

Copyright every single image you post on Instagram by watermarking your images. You may wonder why it’s necessary.

But your art is very susceptible to art theft. A lot of accounts like to post other people’s work. And they conveniently forget to tag the artist. These accounts have 200K or 300K followers and by posting your art, they’re gaining more followers and you’re gaining none.

So even if they don’t tag you, people who really love your work, will search for your Instagram handle and hop on over to your account to follow you and see more of your work.

By watermarking your images, you are signing on your artwork claiming it’s yours.

For example, look at the comic above. Not only do I write my social media handles below, but if you look closely in the background (in the water) I’ve put a subtle watermark “straycurls” there too.

5. Geo-tag your work.

Geotag your work. Don’t put the exact location. You don’t want everyone finding out where you live. Just mark the city in which you stay. Since I’m currently living in Bangalore, a lot of people in Bangalore are able to find me because I use the geo-tag. These are the little ways you can boost your exposure in your own city.

6. Building relationships.

I’ve seen a lot of artists just post their art on Instagram with a description.

#sun #photooftheday #likeforlike

Eh, wrong.

Just wrong.

Don’t even do that, yo.

Your followers are real people. People who are taking time out of their day to see your posts. You want to connect with them. Because you want them to feeeeeeel your art. You don’t want to just shove your art in their faces and ask them to like it or follow you because you want followers.

Build relationships.

So, how do you do that?

1. Understand how comments work.

Instagram judges how well your post does only in the first few moments.

And emoticons or anything less than 3 words is not considered a comment in Instagram’s Database, sadly. So, comments play a very important role in boosting your post and making it look popular.

If your post gets a lot of comments within a few moments, Instagram realizes that your post is popular and you will automatically rank higher in the hashtags you’ve used. Yes, it’s as simple as that.

Therefore, each post you create, must have a specific call-to-action.

You can either:

Ask a question that is related to the post. Having them share an experience will help them write a comment.

Ask them to tag someone.

Ask them to comment.

Before you do this, make sure you share a small snippet of the day. People won’t really feel like writing a long comment, if you don’t put something out there.

Sharing a little bit of your your day, or just a meaningful quote will encourage your followers to comment on your posts.

2. Respond to comments.

Each and every comment is precious, and by responding to every comment at least in the first thirty minutes, you will double your engagement. It tells Instagram that you’re engaging and there are loads of comments. So, keep replying.

People like it when you respond to their comments. They feel encouraged to write on your posts. And you will attract a more engaged audience each time you reply to comments.


3. Go live.

Okay, this was undoubtedly scary for me the first time. But I make it a point to go live once in a while. Especially when I hit a new target. I went live for the first time when I hit 20K. But I should have started at 10K.

Better late, than never… right?

Anyway, going live will let your followers know that you’re indeed a real human being behind your art account.

Answer their questions. Talk to them. Build a relationship. It really matters, especially for the long run.

Your followers will feel more connected to you and will look forward to your art.

There are loads of things you can do when you go live aside from answering questions. You can show them the behind-the-scenes of your work-space or you could draw them a little something or you could show them the tools you work with.

Get creative. 🙂

4. Build relationships with fellow-artists.

It’s very easy to sit on your little raft and row it all alone in the mighty ocean. But it’s even better when you’re not alone.

Follow artists you admire. But don’t expect a follow back.

I know a lot of people who follow people because they expect a follow back. And when they don’t get it in a day or two, they unfollow the artist. They’re only wasting their time.

So, do not, I repeat. Do not do that.

Follow a fellow artist, because you love their work. That’s exactly what you’d expect from people who follow you too. You don’t want to be emotionally blackmailed by a new follower to follow them just because he/she is following you. Right?

Everyone wants to see work that they really love on their feed.

Once you’ve done that, start talking.

Start a conversation.

Build relationships.

Make friends.

Start group chats.

Get involved. Dammit.

5. Do collaborations with fellow artists on Instagram.

This is an incredibly fun away to gain a huge audience and help your artist-friend do the same.

For instance, if you have 2k followers and your friend has 1k followers, you can suggest a collaboration. This collaboration could easily earn you a 100 followers or more.

TIP: If you have 1K followers, and you notice that another artist has 200K followers, don’t suggest a collaboration. This goes without saying. Because the artist who has 200K followers doesn’t have much to gain by doing a collaboration with someone who has a 1K following.

It’s a one-side gain, so try and find artists who can really benefit from your collaboration with them.

6. Comment and like generously.

Aside from building relationships, this will also help you gain a few followers.

Comment on 5-10 posts every day. Don’t force the comment. Write from your heart.

If you see a funny post, write how it made you feel. And if you see a post that stirs an ancient memory, talk about how it did that.

Or, if you want comments on your posts, you have to understand that what goes around, comes around. Give back the love. Share the love.

By commenting on other artists’ posts and engaging with people in your field, you are putting yourself on the map. And this makes your account visible.

Now, when you post a comment on a fellow artist’s post, people who are commenting on that same post may see your comment. If they like what they see (added to your profile picture), they may click to your profile and see that you too are an illustrator/comic artist/artist and give you a follow.

7. Holding Contests and Giveaways.

Every time you hit a new landmark, hold a contest or giveaway.

This is by far one of the best ways to increase your exposure and give your follower growth a much needed boost.

If you don’t have anything to give away, you can do a free portrait or share something exclusive to the winner.

I normally do a free portrait.

When you hold a contest, remember that your post should have one and only one motive. The motive usually is to gain more followers.

So in the description, make sure you ask your followers to do the following:

  • Follow you. (you gain more followers because the people who want to win a free portrait obviously like your style and will want to see more posts in your style)
  • Like the photo. (This boosts the post because more likes boosts your post’s popularity)
  • Tag 2- 3 friends. (This increases the number of comments as more comments boosts your post’s popularity and also results in a chain reaction.) When people tag their friends, they’re friends will also want to enter the contest and win a free portrait.

Announce the day you are going to declare the results in the description. And when the day arrives, disclose the winner in the description by editing the caption and tagging the winner. Change the caption to “Contest Closed.”

Use relevant tags like #giveaway #contest #contestalert and so on.

For more related tags to giveaways, you can read this.

8. Using the correct hashtag strategy.

Okay, this little tip really helped me boost followers.

Now, when you’re starting out, everyone is going to tell you to use the most popular hashtags.

Bad idea.

A popular hashtag like #art might have 361 million posts under it.


How do you have a chance of being found if you post your art in such a hashtag? Within 0.2 seconds your post will be buried under a thousand others using the same hashtag.

Meaning, even if you manually visit that hashtag and scroll at the speed of light, you may not be able to discover your post because there will be so many new ones being generated under the same hashtag.

So, the lesson here kids is to be reasonable with your hashtags.

Therefore, use at least 15 hashtags with just under 1000 posts. Be more specific. See the screenshot below:

For example: Look at the hashtags under 1000 posts above. They don’t have many posts under them. Use at least 13- 15 hashtags in this range.

Use about 12 in the range of 2000-3000 posts.

At the last 5, can be hashtags with a broad range like 40,000 to 50,000 posts.

Now comes the time-consuming bit: Monitoring your post after you post it.

After 15-30 minutes, see if your post climbed up to the Top Posts in the smaller hashtag range. If it did, you can start increasing your range to hashtags with 2000 posts. Get the drift?

If not, keep trying, or lower your range to 500-600 posts.

Basically, you need to make it to the Top Posts for a few hashtags that you use. The longer you stay in the Top Posts, the more likely you’ll be discovered. And the more popularity your post gets, the more likely it is that you’ll make it to the Top Posts in the hashtags (of the higher range).

Get it?

9. Focusing on Trending Topics.

You have to understand that creating posts on trending topics is the best way to get people’s attention. I don’t do this often. But if there is a topic that everyone is suddenly talking about, you can jump on the bandwagon and take a quick ride to fame.

For egs., when the famous Carrie Fisher passed away, a lot of artists drew/illustrated her as a sweet token of love. The Star War hashtags was used a lot because a lot of people were searching for posts related to Carrie Fisher.

When people realize that you’re covering trending topics, they will look forward to your posts every time a major event happens because they’ll want to see your views on it.

10. Analyzing the competition.

Another way to get on top of what works best on Instagram is to analyze your competitors. See which posts do really well for them in terms of likes and comments. And make something similar along the lines of the same topic.

Now, don’t exploit this tip often, because the quality of your posts will drop. Do this very rarely. I’d suggest once in a month or once in two months when you need a quick boost.

TIP: Reading the most popular and liked comments is a very good way to know what people want and what they’re looking for. It may even give you new ideas to work with.

11. Use a Scheduling Program to make your description look neat and tidy.

Now, if you’re directly posting to Instagram, it will be difficult to add a new line. Instagram, squishes all the content in your description and this makes it very difficult to read.

I use Buffer to schedule all my comics and art.

Be it a promotional graphic/photo/art, Buffer is brilliant and it’s free. Now, there are loads of tricks to posting on Instagram/Facebook/Twitter so you can gain a good, solid reach from each platform.

And no one teaches it better than Brian Peters.

I took this class, and it blew me away. He teaches you how to find your voice and choose the right platform. And then gives you marketing tips so that your posts reach a wider audience!

Basically, this means that more people see your posts and fall in love with you.

Kaching kaching!

More followers!

Take a peek at this class here.

Marketing is very important if you want to gain a good following and earn an income from that following. And, I will be making a detailed post later on how to market yourself as an artist.



There are a lot of tips in this long, meaty post. So, bookmark it. Come back to this post time to time and evaluate your Instagram account. Or you can download my eBook below!

I know I’ve written a lot, but trust me… there is a lot you can learn from posting everyday on Instagram. It’s not easy to implement all of these in just a minute.

That’s totally okay.

Take your time. And build your brand.

Start implementing these tips. And I promise you, you will see a change in 2 months of doing this.

If you liked this post, and found it useful, be a doll and click the share button below this post.

Did you find any tip extremely useful? Or do you have a tip to add to this long list? Then leave a comment below!

About the Author:

Angela is a 26 year old Illustrator and Comic Artist living in Bangalore, India with her husband and 2 cute little Labrador retrievers who resemble a cream-bun and a chocolate kiss.


  1. Naina May 12, 2018 at 3:03 pm - Reply

    this is amazing!!! loved it x

    • Angela Vaz May 13, 2018 at 5:35 am - Reply

      Hey Naina,
      Thank you so much. So glad you loved it.
      Lots of kisses,

  2. Jaron Gorena May 12, 2018 at 3:13 pm - Reply

    This guide helps me understand what my page is going to consist of. Even as a starter I want to know what help/expectations I am going to expect from this guide. This would be aimed at pretty much anyone who is willing to start an art page of some kind (even if it’s a clickbaity title). I feel like one of a few artists would offer this kind of help but I appreciate the help from this guide that I read and would consider it later on. This was really helpful and thank you ❤️

    • Angela Vaz May 13, 2018 at 5:38 am - Reply

      Hey Jaron,
      I haven’t tried my hand in other fields except Instagram so I’m definitely not an expert. But all these tips are from my experience on this particular Social Media. And I want to be able to give back to the art community. I know how hard the initial days of an artist is, and we could all benefit from a little help. 🙂
      Thank you so much. And I’m glad you found it helpful.
      Warm regards,

  3. Natasha May 12, 2018 at 3:32 pm - Reply

    Thank you for this 🙏🏼 Really useful tips. Very generous of you to give them out for free. 😊

    • Angela Vaz May 13, 2018 at 5:39 am - Reply

      Hey Natasha,
      No problem. I want to help as much as I can. 🙂 My main goal is to create a blog that is useful for artists (or creative people) of any kind.
      Lots of love,

  4. Tania May 12, 2018 at 3:56 pm - Reply

    This may be the only helpful article I’ve ever read about gaining followers. Thank you 😁

    • Angela Vaz May 13, 2018 at 5:40 am - Reply

      Hey Tania,
      That means so much to me. :’) Thank you so much.
      Lots of love,

  5. the.naija.teen May 12, 2018 at 4:13 pm - Reply

    Thank you sooo much for this.

  6. Tim.toons May 12, 2018 at 5:58 pm - Reply

    Your blog is so inspirational and it’s a
    real treasure for budding artists like me. I am surely going to try this and will come back right here after two months 😀

    • Angela Vaz May 13, 2018 at 5:41 am - Reply

      Hey Tim.toons,
      Awwww, that is so sweet of you. That’s exactly what I want to build with this blog. Make sure you subscribe so you don’t miss any more tutorials like this. 🙂
      Lots of love,

  7. Ishita Taak May 12, 2018 at 5:59 pm - Reply

    Hi Angela!
    I fell in love with your comics from the start and even more so after reading this TREMENDOUSLY HELPFUL blog.

    I’m a young, traditional artist and currently am running an anonymous art page which has 12 posts up till now. I don’t exactly love the content at the moment which is the reason for the anonymity but I’d like to expand it’s reach as I find my art style.
    Any advices for artists like me?

    Also, I signed up with a company to paint for them for as long as I wish but they can’t pay me and can only help publicise my page. I would like to take it up as it’ll help me regularise my work and my style, but you suggested in another blog of yours that young artists shouldn’t work for free. I’m confused here.

    • Angela Vaz May 13, 2018 at 5:46 am - Reply

      Hey Ishita,
      Thank you so much. I’m so glad you love the blog and find it helpful. It makes me so happy to hear that.

      If you’re comfortable being anonymous, there’s nothing wrong. But in order to build connections and trust, you have to break out of your shell. It’s okay to keep experimenting till you find your style, but why don’t you let your followers in on that? You can grow with them. And you needn’t be bashful. See my earlier work, for example. It was pretty rubbish. Lol. But I continued to post and my followers saw the difference in my art. But then again, this is totally my opinion. 🙂

      Regarding the working for free thing, don’t. Are you gaining anything that is actually helping you? A lot of companies tell you that working for free is good because they’re “publicizing” or “promoting” your work and giving you “exposure.”

      If they’re using these words, it’s only because they don’t want to pay you and waste money on art. And you should NOT encourage such behaviour. Remember, art is a means to earn money. Never, ever work for free. Draw up a contract, and ask for payment. If they refuse, then find someone else. It’s okay to wait.

      Let me know if you have any other questions, and I’ll be more than happy to help.

      Lots of love,

  8. Ana May 12, 2018 at 6:03 pm - Reply

    This is better than most courses/webinars/e-mail classes that I took from people claiming to sell you the moon and the stars and then just giving 5 vague tips, then saying Do this and you’ll be an Instagram sensation until midnight! Thank you, Angela, thank you so much! <3

    • Angela Vaz May 13, 2018 at 5:47 am - Reply

      Hey Ana,

      I’m super happy that my post was able to provide you more content than most. It gives me a very satisfying feeling. 😀 Thank you.

      Hugs and kisses,

  9. Lina May 12, 2018 at 6:31 pm - Reply

    This is a very beautiful post… I loved every part of it.. although I have done a few of the ones you mentioned ( and not correctly I think hehehe) i am still struggling with building a solid account… But there is still so much more I can learn in which you said here!
    Thank you very much for this!!
    I will try and do these tips♥️


    • Angela Vaz May 13, 2018 at 5:48 am - Reply

      Hey Lina,
      Ha ha, we’re all guilty of implementing tips halfway and then giving up. 😛
      I’m super happy that you found it useful!
      Lots of love,

  10. Jeff Sequeira May 12, 2018 at 7:42 pm - Reply

    Thank you for the feature Angela 😀
    I actually learnt quite a few things from here. The blog was very helpful. Kudos to you. Keep up the great work 😀

    • Angela Vaz May 13, 2018 at 5:48 am - Reply

      Hey Jeff,
      No problem. 😀 It’s my pleasure. And I’m so happy you loved it.
      Love from my pups to yours,

  11. Phalguni May 12, 2018 at 8:15 pm - Reply

    Thank you so much!!! This is really helpful! ❤

    I started last year (@funnyinmyheadcomics) but I don’t post regularly because I’m busy with my studies. This blog post will really come i handy! Thanks again!

    • Angela Vaz May 13, 2018 at 5:49 am - Reply

      Hey Phalguni,
      Oh, the posting consistently really works wonders for growing your Instagram. 😀 But don’t sacrifice your studying for that. There’s plenty of time to do that in your summer vacation. 😀
      Lots of love,

  12. Zahra May 13, 2018 at 4:45 am - Reply

    It was very helpful, thankyou so much. I am sure I am gonna reread it several times in the future. Also, you are such a lovely artist and a sweeter human! I love you comics so much, but i mess them a lot since you seldom post them now. I love you. Keep up your good word! All the best for whatever you do!

  13. Zahra May 13, 2018 at 4:47 am - Reply

    Your* miss* work* sorry for the typos

    • Angela Vaz May 13, 2018 at 5:51 am - Reply

      Hey Zahra,
      You’re so sweet, thank you so much. I’m taking a break from Instagram, due to the algorithm change and the fact I’ve got a new puppy. It’s never good to rely on one thing for too much. And I’m trying to build other sources of income. Just in case Instagram closes down one day. You never know…
      I will continue posting eventually. 🙂
      Lots of love,

  14. Zoey May 13, 2018 at 6:18 am - Reply

    This is really helpful. I’ve been studying about this but everyone seems to give conflicting tips. Yours are very logical, will try try it out. Thank you!

    • Angela Vaz May 13, 2018 at 6:21 am - Reply

      Hey Zoey,
      Thank you so much. And I’m really glad you found it helpful. 🙂 Let me know which tip worked the best for you.
      Lots of love,

  15. Jessica Luis May 13, 2018 at 11:01 am - Reply

    Hey Angela,

    What a superb blog post, loved every bit of it! Bookmarked it and then went and read all the others 🙂

    I’m an ecologist who loves drawing wildlife, and I started an Instagram art account a few days ago. Was flailing and a bit lost, and saw this post just in time. And it was super a helpful, thank you! Can’t wait to try these out 🙂

    • Angela Vaz May 14, 2018 at 4:42 am - Reply

      Hi Jessica,
      Thank you so much. 🙂 I’m so glad you loved it. It’s difficult when you start. No path is easy. 🙂
      I wish you all the best! Your account sounds very interesting! 😀
      Lots of love,

  16. Oryanda May 13, 2018 at 5:58 pm - Reply

    I love this! Not only helpful for artists, but also for other businesses. I’m a hairstylist for curly hair and will implement your tips!

    • Angela Vaz May 14, 2018 at 4:44 am - Reply

      Hey Oryanda,
      I totally didn’t think that it would be that helpful to other fields. I guess this post covers topics for any creative field! 😀 That’s nice to know. 😀 Thank you so much.
      Lots of love,

  17. Kiran May 14, 2018 at 11:18 am - Reply

    Hi Angela,
    Loved reading this post and I’m working toward implementing your suggestions with my account. However, I’m struggling to even get to 500 followers let alone 1k.
    I saw some of your earlier posts and your reach was still insane. I also see accounts that have 50 posts with 3k+ followers. Although their work is great, I notice they don’t use that many Hashtags. How is this achieved?!

    • Angela Vaz May 14, 2018 at 11:31 am - Reply

      Hi Kiran,
      Everything depends on the reach. Say they post about a conroversial topic, or even a famous account tags their post, they can reach a couple of thousand followers in just minutes.

      I woke up one morning to a 3K follower boost because an account with nearly 300K follower count had featured my post.

      Hashtags are important, but it’s totally your call if you want to use a lot or just 3-4. Using all 30 definitely improves your chances of being found. That’s mainly why I suggest doing so.

      How many posts do you have? And what exactly is your theme about? Maybe, I could take a look and let you know.

      Warm regards,

      • Kiran May 15, 2018 at 9:49 am - Reply

        Hi Angela,
        Thanks so much for your reply.
        My account is @leftbydesign, and I started it as a lettering/calligraphy learning outlet.
        After reading through your post above, I can see that I need to find my niche. My posts are mainly lettering challenges where I copy out a word or sentence, and lately I’m trying to make my own mini-series but I’m not posting everyday, or maybe not using the relevant tags/engaging online as much.
        If there is anything else you can suggest I work on, I’m all ears!

        • Angela Vaz May 16, 2018 at 2:35 am - Reply

          Hello Kiran,
          I just hopped on over to your profile. It’s lovely by the way. 🙂
          But there are a few things you can do. Aside from posting consistently, you can engage with your audience more. Talk to them, ask them their views, tell a story. A simple caption is no longer enough to reel your audience in. They need to know what made you choose that particular phrase or design. It’s the story they want! 😀
          Also, post only 3 hashtags in your description.
          And put the rest in the first comment.
          I hope this helps.
          Lots of love,

          • Kiran May 16, 2018 at 10:46 am

            Hey Angela,
            Thank you so much for taking time out to checking my profile 🙂
            I really appreciate your suggestions and will work on them!
            Excited to read your next post. Take care!!

          • Angela Vaz May 16, 2018 at 11:43 am

            Hey Kiran,
            It was no problem at all. Happy to help a fellow artist. 😀
            My next post will be a light read (very short) just for girls/women who love stationery. 😉
            Is it something you’re interested in? (asking out of curiosity)
            Lots of love,

          • Kiran May 17, 2018 at 11:55 am

            YES!! Stationary f.o.r.e.v.e.r!! Haha *breathes heavily* ..I’m even more excited now 🙂

          • Angela Vaz May 19, 2018 at 3:23 am

            Hey Kiran,
            So happy to hear you say that! 😀 A new post is coming today.
            Lots of love,

  18. Adrianna May 14, 2018 at 3:43 pm - Reply

    Thank you so much for writing this! I’ve been coming back to this all weekend! Everything I’ve read about gaining followers really hasn’t been relevant for artists who want to develop an community. I’m a recent college grad with a degree in art with no idea what to do with my skills, and this has really been a great guide and motivator to pursue my goals. Your blog posts are so helpful, please keep writing! I’m taking notes! 🙂

    • Angela Vaz May 15, 2018 at 3:23 am - Reply

      Hey Adrianna,
      I know! When I started posting my art on Instagram, I was searching for an article that helped me gain followers with respect to posting art but I found close to none. 🙁 So, I decided to write one. I’m super happy that you found it helpful. <3 I'm going to keep writing for as long as it takes!
      Lots of love,

  19. Cameron Carothers May 15, 2018 at 4:48 pm - Reply

    Wow! Great tips!! Thank you so much, especially, for explaining a simple hashtag strategy. Bookmarked for future reference. And even as an older male, I like your art 🙂

    • Angela Vaz May 16, 2018 at 2:36 am - Reply

      Hey Cameron,
      I’m super glad you liked it! 😀 And the fact that you’re male and love my art made my day. <3 Thank you so much.
      Lots of love,

  20. Joseph Moss May 16, 2018 at 12:45 pm - Reply

    I think you have just taught an old dog some new tricks! I can easily see that you have a very giving heart for taking the time to share this information. All the best to you!!

    • Angela Vaz May 16, 2018 at 12:51 pm - Reply

      Hi Joseph,
      Thank you so much. ^_^ You’re very sweet. I know how hard it is as an artist to grow on Instagram. So I wanna help as much as I possibly can. I’m so glad you found this post useful.
      I’ll be releasing more actionable tips soon so be sure to subscribe if you haven’t already. 😀
      Warm regards,

  21. Sally May 23, 2018 at 1:24 pm - Reply

    Has your business of selling your art products increased as much as the number of followers on Instagram?

    Is it worth it (business wise) to go through all the work and effort to increase followers on Instagram? One may get 100,000 followers, but if business does not improve a lot, is it worth doing?

    • Angela Vaz May 23, 2018 at 2:10 pm - Reply

      Hi Sally,
      I’m glad you asked this question. The reason why I wanted to grow my Instagram in the first place was to get constant and steady work. Now, all I have to do is advertise for commissions either on my Instagram story or post and I get over 25 requests. Basically, with just one post, I have enough work to keep me busy for a month. That’s what Instagram accomplished for me. 🙂

      I hope that answers your question. The engagement really matters, of course. All my posts have a constant theme, so my followers know what to expect from me.

      Let me know if you have any further questions and I’ll do my best to answer them.

      Warm regards,

  22. Thomas Webb May 25, 2018 at 5:54 pm - Reply

    Fantastic, super helpful information, presented in a fun and pleasant way. I have tried several of your suggestions in the last 2 days and have already seen a change! Cant wait to see what happens as I implement even more of these ideas!

    Thomas Webb
    PS I found the link to this on Design Taxi if that info is of use to you.

    • Angela Vaz May 28, 2018 at 1:40 pm - Reply

      Hello Thomas!
      Thank you so much. 🙂 I’m super glad the tips worked for you. And yes, you’ll notice a huge change. The biggest game-changer was posting everyday. I hopped over onto your Etsy Shop. And I love it! 😀 Your art is so unique.
      Warm regards,
      P.S. Yes, that helps a lot!

  23. Anne Mette Sørensen July 18, 2018 at 8:28 pm - Reply

    What an amazing post. Gave me a possibility to look through my own page and see what I am doing wrong. However… I can’t really see what I am doing wrong other than not being able to post every day.. My page: Madebyamee, I do both digital and traditional illustrations. I am stuck at 300 followers and I have a maximum growth of 10 followers a day. I need to look into what I am to do to grow more rapid. Again.. That k you so much for an amazing blog post!!

    • Angela Vaz July 19, 2018 at 2:52 am - Reply

      Hey Anne!

      Thank you so much. So glad you loved this post.

      Unfortunately, posting consistently is very important in the beginning stage in order to grow. So try posting more regularly to see your follower growth rise.

      Also, if possible, stick to one. Either traditional or digital. It will help build a consistent brand.

      Ask questions. Talk about your life. What prompted you to draw that character. Maybe a book you read… then ask your readers what they’d like to see from you. Or mention how that one particular series inspired you to draw a centaur, for example. Ask them who is their favorite character. You have to really engage with your audience. Pretend you’re talking to your friend. It will help!

      Let me know if you run into any snags, and I will try to help you out! Goodluck. You have a pretty page!

      Warm regards,

  24. KIX August 21, 2018 at 8:01 am - Reply

    Angela, Thanks for good tips 😉

    Silly question I have,
    What’s the reason that people (artists) use Instagram ?
    I’d say people use it more for collaboration (with other artists or brands) ? or like a portfolio? – if not for web traffic…

    Have a good day!

    • Angela Vaz August 22, 2018 at 4:33 am - Reply

      Hello Koko,

      NO question is silly, love! And actually, it’s a very good question.

      Artists use Instagram for one reason only. It’s very easy to gain followers, especially since art is trendy. It does even better if it engages with a teenage audience – mainly girls between the ages of 13-21.

      Now, after I started using Instagram, I started gaining clients like crazy. I’d just put an image up saying commissions are open on my Instagram Stories and my inbox would be flooded with requests. So that’s one of the reasons artists use Instagram. To gain clients.

      I have a post on how you can gain clients online right here.

      But web traffic is kinda less, unless again they’re catering to women or a certain niche and creates cute products or fashion related products.

      You basically have to find out where your audience lies and then go and get them!

      Let me know if you have any questions. You ask great ones. 😉

  25. KIX August 29, 2018 at 11:43 am - Reply

    Angela, THANK YOU for your response. I am going to give a GO to instagram for my other blog. It’s about food and very visual. I won’t expect page views from there but more for companies to discover me to collaborate. 🙂

    I love your blog design btw – keep at it, I will visit here agin 🙂

    • Angela Vaz August 30, 2018 at 4:43 am - Reply

      Hello Koko,

      It’s no problem at all. <3 Oh yes! Brands love to collaborate. Join Sway. They hold paid opportunities every week and send emails regarding the details. You can apply for anything that catches your fancy. They pay for blog posts, pictures on Instagram and so on. Do check it out!

      And thank you so much for the compliment. <3

      Lots of love,

  26. Prachiti September 9, 2018 at 4:47 am - Reply

    Hey Angela,
    Thia is so helpful… I was ocassionally posting only my craftwork on Instagram… since I want to start out as an illustrator
    I’m going to be using a lot of thses tricks to put myself ‘out there’.
    Cheers! Happy Sunday!

    • Angela Vaz September 18, 2018 at 3:30 am - Reply

      Hello Prachiti,

      o0o0o0o0o0! You’re most welcome. 😀

      Let me know how it goes. I’m sure you’ll do splendidly!

      Lots of love,

  27. Priyanjana Chowdhury September 11, 2018 at 11:07 am - Reply

    I am a manga artist and have been pushed into this platform by a friend of mine. I had no idea what to do, and god how insightful your article has been! Thank you so much, and may I add that I have been an ardent follower of your comics?

    • Angela Vaz September 18, 2018 at 3:34 am - Reply

      Hello Priyanjana,

      A manga artist!? That sounds wonderful! What is your Instagram Handle? I’d love to see your work! 😀

      I’m so happy that you’ve found my article helpful. That’s the very purpose behind it! I really want to help people gain tons of exposure via social media. 😀

      And yes, you may. You’re very sweet. Thank you for following me. <3

      Lots of hugs,

  28. Jessica September 12, 2018 at 5:25 pm - Reply

    Hi Angela,
    This is the most helpful and informative post I’ve read regarding Instagram followers. Wonderful post! However, I had a question regarding hashtags.
    You mentioned to post 12-15 hashtags that have less than 1000 posts starting out. I tried this for the first time yesterday, and after the 15-30 minute mark, I noticed several of my smaller hashtags were in the “Top Posts”. Even after several hours, I still have a decent amount in the top posts.
    You mentioned if this is the case, that I can start using hashtags in the 2000 post range (from the small hashtag group). Does this mean that I should go back to that same post and get rid of the under 1000 hashtags and replace them with the 2000 range? Or are you saying in future posts I can start using the 2000 post hashtags for the smaller hashtag range?
    Here is my instagram, just in case you need to take a look!


    • Angela Vaz September 18, 2018 at 3:47 am - Reply

      Hello Jessica,

      First of all, thank you for the lovely compliment.

      No, once you’ve published the post, it’s done. Don’t go to edit the hashtags. Instagram knows it’s an old post and won’t promote it. You’ll have to experiment with the next post. So, to answer your question: Future posts.

      And I just took a quick peek at your Instagram account. My… it’s absolutely lovely! I even saw a Dragonite. I’m a huge Pokémon fan by the way. <3

      Wishing you all the best!
      P.S. Let me know if you need anything else and I'll be more than happy to help you out!

      • Jessica September 19, 2018 at 3:17 am - Reply

        Hi Angela,
        Thank you for the reply 🙂 And my pleasure! Your guide is so wonderfully detailed.

        I appreciate the clarification regarding hashtags. I just have one more question I can think of; when is a good time to start using hashtags with more posts in the medium and broad hashtag range? So instead of using tags with 40,000 to 50,0000 in the broad range, when could I start using posts in the, say, 70,000 to 100,000 post range? I hope I’m making sense!

        Thank you so much for the kind comment on my page 🙂 Great to see another fellow Pokemon fan <3

        Thank you!

        • Angela Vaz September 21, 2018 at 11:38 am - Reply

          Hello Jessica,

          No problem!

          And in answer to your question, you have to do your research. You can pick 2-3 hashtags to try out that are in the 70K to 100K range. And see how that fares. Do it for 3-4 posts. If it’s doing better than your previous posts, include more of those hashtags.

          At the end of the day, it’s all trial and error. By noting what works, and what doesn’t you’ll grow steadily and quickly!

          Warm regards,
          P.S. Pokémon rules! <3

  29. Rahul Yadav December 1, 2018 at 7:57 am - Reply

    Great information thank you for sharing this wonderful post.

    • Angela Vaz December 4, 2018 at 8:07 am - Reply

      Hello Rahul.
      Thank you so much! So glad you liked it. 😀

  30. Basit December 29, 2018 at 10:18 am - Reply


    It is the perfect guide to archive the 100k and thanks for sharing wonderful article with us.

    • Angela Vaz December 31, 2018 at 5:14 am - Reply

      Thank you so much! I wish you all the best with hitting that 100K mark! 😀

  31. Brice January 2, 2019 at 5:43 am - Reply

    Hey Angela,

    So I’m a white guy with no hair, which means that if you were a super hero, I’d be your Nemesis. Just saying.

    Thank you SO much for this report.
    My webcomic (@ugly.sweater) had grown nicely on FB, but was stuck at around 25K followers on insta.
    Your words really helped me figure out what I was missing, and what I’ve been doing right.

    Totally agree that consistency and daily posting makes a huge difference.
    However, with a wife, two kids and a full time corporate job, I find it challenging to be as consistent as I’d like, especially as my comic take time to prepare (10h+). I like your suggestion for quick content creation – need to plan ahead 🙂

    Wanted your thoughts on something – what do you believe the impact of “insta stories” is? Any suggestions (besides Live drawing sessions) of particular stories that create good engagement and increase reach? Do you also think it is important to have an up to date website as a brand reference? Thanks a ton for your thoughts.

    • Angela Vaz January 7, 2019 at 4:47 am - Reply

      Hey Brice,

      You aren’t my nemesis. I bet you have hair on your arms and legs. That means, you can still join the Hair Club! 😀

      Please forgive me for babbling, but this is going to be one long message.

      Okay, here’t the thing. Instagram and Facebook are now owned by one company. Their algorithm changes (which happen quite frequently) produce small glitches which affect only a handful of people each time and it affects different people differently. It has nothing to do with the numbers.

      So, make sure you aren’t affected by the glitch. Everytime you post, does your follower count go up or go down? If you are seeing that you gain 3 followers, but your number is only going up by 1 or 2, then you have been affected.

      You may have to start a new account.

      I reached 181K followers and the glitch affected me. I dropped down to 157K. I waited for a whole year for my account to get fixed. I tried reaching out to Support for over 3 months. No matter how much I posted or how much I engaged, it was of no use. People cannot see my posts and cannot follow me. They’re having issues even messaging me. It was very troubling. But I have started a new account day before yesterday. 😀 And I’ve retained the same name. So it’s @straycurls

      Why I’m telling you this? Because I want you to understand that Facebook/Instagram is not stable. They can suspend you anytime for no fault of your own. They can shut down or a glitch can affect your account.

      You need a backup. You need to have your own Brand. No questions asked.

      Do not rely on Social Media completely. Especially if you’re making money off of it. Have a back up. It’s important.

      I was so scared of starting from scratch, but now I’m doing it all over again! 😀 And I’m going to try my hardest to post everyday. With my Blog, I feel safe and secure that my Brand will never be washed off completely even if Social Media decides to cave in tomorrow. That’s my story.

      Now, I totally understand that having a job, a family and so many responsibilities get in the way of posting. But might I suggest, making your sketches in advance? Keep a notebook of your ideas. And sketch them out all in one day. At least 10-12.

      This will help you draw your comics faster. All you have to do, is flesh it out before posting. It will save you tons of time.

      Regarding Stories, get online and answer questions. Ask your followers to ask you anything and then talk. This is by far the best form of engagement according to me.

      I’m sorry I took long to reply to your comment. I wanted to give you a long, detailed answer.

      Please let me know if I can answer any other questions and I’ll be more than happy to help. And your comics are super cool. You’ve just earned a new follower. 😉

      Warm regards,

      • Brice Richard January 7, 2019 at 6:00 am - Reply

        Angela, thank you sooooo much for the long and helpful reply.

        I see what you mean regarding not relying on social media. It happened to me with Facebook. I built a following of 145K readers, then almost overnight I had difficulties reaching people, engagement dropped, etc. So I moved on to instagram. So I definitely relate to your experience. I am sure that the new straycurls account will quickly exceed the old one 🙂

        Love your idea regarding stories, and yes, I started putting together some sketches or templates that allow me to draw a bit faster. Also, I started thinking about one panel ideas rather than 4 panel ones, just to be able to always be able to push things forward once a week. Your comic definitely inspired me to go towards that direction.

        Super happy to count you as another follower – will stay closely in touch.

        • Angela Vaz January 9, 2019 at 4:41 am - Reply

          Hey Brice,

          145K is a huge amount!!! I’m honestly enraged that Social Media is treating us that way. Maybe, it’s all a gimmick to get us to start paying for ads. 🙁

          Yes, Stories are a wonderful way to connect! Time to time, you can share photos on your Stories too! Or even small videos of you drawing. You can hold a Live, to tell your audience what you use to create your comics, the brushes and things like that…

          1-2 panel comic ideas is a great way to save time!!!

          So glad I could help. Consider starting your own website. It’s a good way to not depend on social media completely.

          Hugs and best wishes,

  32. Miranda March 29, 2019 at 8:00 pm - Reply

    Thank you so much for this post! It’s only of the very few decent advices I have seen. I was already discouraged and saddened that my art account wasn’t going well but I was doing everything wrong specially with the hashtags thing, I guess using the most popular tags was what made me get creepy and spammy accounts trying that annoying method of following me just to leave in 2 days, ugh! I engage genuinely with fellow artists both huge and small accounts but I think doing this still got me people using my account to get a follow back then leaving, I only have 40 followers now and it’s very frustrating to see the number going down

    • Angela Vaz April 1, 2019 at 3:18 am - Reply

      Hello Miranda,

      I’m glad this post helped you. Yes, growing on Instagram initially can be tough. But once you hit the 1000 mark, it’s very easy to grow from there. Don’t concentrate on the numbers. Its easier said than done. But focus only on your art and publishing pieces for yourself.

      Use Instagram to watch yourself grow as an artist. Compare your new art to your older art. The followers will come eventually. As your art gets better, you’ll get more followers. Using hashtags that have few photos, are very important as that will help you grow faster!

      I hope this helps you! <3

      Lots of love,

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