Instagram is a great place for creatives to showcase their lives and also their work, and for agencies it offers the perfect opportunity to get their portfolios out there as well as giving followers a taste of their studio culture. Even if you're not a prolific Instagram poster, it pays to follow your favourite agencies so that you can have a regular feed of fresh work that can help kick-start your design thinking (opens in new tab). (For even more inspiration, take a look at our roundup of the best Instagram designers (opens in new tab) to follow).
A good Instagram feed can be like a freeform mood board (opens in new tab), with inspiration likely to hit you from any angle as long as you have a good roster of accounts to follow. If your feed's looking a little sparse right now, here's just the thing to breathe some life into it: a boutique selection of nine agency accounts that you simply won't want to miss. Read on and be ready to hit that Follow button.
- A designer's guide to Instagram Stories (opens in new tab)
We might as well start big. Pentagram (opens in new tab)'s one of the most famous design agencies in the world, and with just over half a million followers it's pretty big on Instagram too. Its feed gets an update more or less daily with new work to inspire you, and we love its recent epic sequence of 12 posts showcasing the branding for re__social by Eddie Opara and his team.
Branding agency North (opens in new tab)'s Instagram feed doesn't get updated that often, but when it does you'll want to pay attention. With work for institutions such as the Tate, Barbican and Railway Museum on show, not to mention its controversial identity work for the Science Museum (opens in new tab), there's plenty here to fire your imagination.
At the time of writing, Build (opens in new tab)'s feed starts off brilliantly with a triptych of posts focused on its work on promotional materials for a film about design legend Dieter Rams, and it's well worth exploring beyond there. With loads of bold identity work on show, plus stunning typography, photography and print design, it's a real designer's treasure trove.
A creative studio based in Barcelona, Hey (opens in new tab) prides itself on is visual language full of bright, bold colours and geometric shapes, and there are plenty of examples of this to discover in its Instagram feed. Its recent minimal Game of Thrones tribute is well worth checking out, and the Hey feed is also a great place to see the studio's many side project – which you can buy from its shop.
05. Johnson Banks
Need some bite-size design tips? Pay a visit to Johnson Banks (opens in new tab)' Instagram feed and you'll find plenty, taken from Michael Johnson's new book, Now Try Something Weirder. You'll also find plenty of work on show – not just finished projects but also early sketches, including a very rough scribble that became the studio's branding for Shelter.
Born in Brooklyn but with offices worldwide, Huge (opens in new tab) says that it's the fastest-growing agency of the last decade, and with nearly 100,000 followers it lives up to its name on Instagram. As well as showcasing its client work, studio culture and some fantastic limited edition merch, the Huge feed also highlights the agency's social conscience, with a good helping of posts relating to civil rights and equality.
Named last year as one of San Francisco's top LGBTQ-owned businesses, BSTRO (opens in new tab) is a digital marketing agency with an eye on diversity, something that's reflected nicely in its Instagram feed. There's a good selection of work on show – both for clients and side projects – but there are also plenty of posts providing a look at BSTRO life.
If you need lots of detail on design projects, Anagrama (opens in new tab)'s Instagram feed is the perfect place to look. The Mexico City-based studio doesn't do things by halves where Instagram is concerned, and its feed is guaranteed to delight you with multiple shots of branding work, and while you may not be familiar with the mostly South American businesses it works with, you'll appreciate the beautiful design work.
Boutique design studio Branch (opens in new tab) really understands how to operate a beautiful Instagram feed, with brilliantly composed shots of its recent work and a great eye for a killer palette. Topped off with stylish studio shots and perfectly-posed photos of its founder, Shauna Haider, it's an object lesson in doing Instagram right.