Instagram is one of the best ways to develop your LGBTQ+ pride or allyship. The platform can provide community for queer folks while also helping cis-, straight allies learn and educate themselves on these issues. One of the best parts about Instagram for me was seeing photos and videos of happy, out influencers which helped me build a higher level of self-esteem.
Just in time for Pride, here’s out list of queer influencers you’ll want to add to your feed.
Forestqueer is a butch lesbian living in San Francisco. I’ve been a follower of this page for a while and let me say, I’ve learned a lot. Whether you’re interested in class consciousness or the photos of dogs, this account is worth the follow.
Theaidsmemorial is a page that chronicles the lives lost to AIDS. Some may find this account depressing or hard to read, but I find that learning about the lives that we have lost and memorializing them bolsters my pride in the community.
. . “I wrote this in despair and fury on the day Carl Valentino died on June 13, 1996. . “Carl Valentino, pictured left, longtime openly gay school teacher and gay rights activist, finally called it a day this evening at St. Luke’s Hospital in NYC after an exhausting battle with AIDS. . Carl was that rare activist with mouth unbridled, for whom even political opponents paid tribute because his retelling of the truth was so fearless and clear-eyed. . He was on the Board of Directors of the original Community Research Initiative of NYC. . Carl got his skinny butt out there for many a gay rights demo, be it @glaad, Gay Activists Alliance, @actupny or Queer Nation. He was instrumental in organizing the @aidswalkny 1987, sponsored by @gmhc. . Carl accompanied me on visits by The Holiday Project, a do-gooder group, to PWA wards in city hospitals . . . once at Rikers [Island] Prison. . On one of these visits in 1989 at the VA [Veterans Administration] Hospital, I had invited along my @actupny comrade @thediamandagalas; she and Carl bonded for life that day. I was proud of that fact. . Carl leaves a loving immediate family in Brooklyn, his faithful and tireless lover Derek Fox of Manhattan, and a slew of inconsolable friends who are glad to have been privileged to share this cosmic party for awhile with Carl. . His death is a crime and his life was a triumph, but we are all too shredded right now to issue a manifesto and call for the destruction of certain landmarks. But you get the sentiment . . .” — by Jay Blotcher @jayboyusa . 1. May, 1987 — Carl and me, co-organizers of @aidswalkny 1987 at the end of the event that afternoon. . 2. New York City, June 1987 —Carl (left) and the late Kiki Mason, who also died of AIDS, at my birthday party at La Cascada Cafe, Chelsea. . 3. May, 1987 Empire State Building — Organizers of 1987 @aidswalkny. From left: @leifgreen, #JoeUmbrino, Carl (seated) and @denissenjohn. . 4. #CentralPark, NYC — From left: Journalist-novelist @jimprovenzano, me, Carl and activist #AmyBauer. . 5. Carl at party a couple of weeks after @aidswalkny. . #whatisrememberedlives #theaidsmemorial #aidsmemorial #neverforget #endaids .
Lgbt_history is a historical Instagram account that posts pictures and information of queer people often in a time when being queer was a punishable offense. This account shows how far we’ve come.
H_e_r_s_t_o_r_y Ah yes, another historical instagram account. But, this account boosts lesbian visibility and fights erasure by posting photos of lesbians and wlw throughout the ages.
Chellaman is a deaf, mixed race, genderqueer artist living in NYC. Chella also has a YouTube account where he posts transition updates and a day in the life videos. Not to mention, his art is stunning.
6. Eli Erlick
Eli Erlick is the co-founder of Trans Student Educational Resources and is a graduate student at UCSC. She posts stunning photos while commenting on toxic masculinity and other important topics. I came for the photos but stayed for the discourse.
I really want to take this pride month to celebrate friendship and connections with community members. Instead of a corporate pride preaching rainbow capitalism, we should take some time to consider how significant the queer and trans people in our lives are. Ask yourself where you would be without a queer family member or friend. Then ask where they would be if things like pride or the Stonewall Riots never happened. In the closet? Forced out of their families? This is just one part of why we cannot let pride be about vodka and rainbow flags. I’m certainly not saying we can’t have fun but that we should make this a time to truly celebrate our queer and trans loved ones, now more than ever. . . . . . . . . . . . . #queer #wlw #tomboystyle #womenlovingwomen #genderqueer #sheer #genderqueer #ftm #mtf #gayfashion #floral #collarchain #gaygirl #bayarea #santacruz #berkeley #sanfrancisco #transwomen #transwoman
7. Adam Eli
Adam Eli is the founder of Voices 4_, a group dedicated to liberating queer people from oppression in other areas of the world. Eli is a Jewish gay man and often posts about how these identities intersect and the struggles that he faces.
@brandonjwolf is a pulse survivor, activist and dear friend. I interviewed him for the cover of @dazed Summer ‘18 with photos by @ryanmcginleystudios . At the end I asked him : Is there anything else you would like to say? Any final thoughts? Brandon: I think this piece has a unique opportunity to acknowledge the disparities in the gun violence prevention movement. To acknowledge its complexities, but also to reflect on the power of potential unity. If the country could unlock the intersection of these communities being impacted by gun violence… we would be unstoppable. The solution to this problem will be found in our ability to unify communities, lift up unheard voices, and stand together to take on a deeply corrupt and violent system. Photography @ryanmcginleystudios Styling @emmawyman Hair @jawaraw Make-up @francelledaly
Transnormativity is a queer freelance photographer. A Klass, the person behind the account, is successful in making their followers feel supported and loved within the community by posting sex-positive and body-positive images of themselves and others. This account will boost your self esteem and make you feel like a better person just by indirectly interacting with Klass.
Rain Dove — Raindovemodel — is a gender neutral model who seeks to highlight the disparities between the treatment between men and women in the fashion world.
“You be prettier with a little lipstick. Maybe even fuckable.” Said a designer in London during fashion week castings once. So I gave it a try. But they were wrong about one thing- it didn’t make me “fuckable” it made me “Don’tFuckWithMe”able. Lipsticks, blushes, mascaras etc shouldn’t be labeled as beauty products. They should be labeled as art products. They help us express ourselves and what we want from the world- just like our clothing or body language. But you can not find Beauty in Lipstick. Rather only in the state of BEing. That’s the key to BEauty. To BE. And if BEing a Being who wears lipstick is part of the You that is You then that’s BEautiful. Because you are being honest about who you are and how you like to express yourself. Not because you have some color on your lips. Also! Don’t get caught up in the socially constructed suggestions for how to wear cosmetics. Do your own authentic honest thing. Have fun. People may give you a hard time for being You but take pride in the fight. Take pride in your commitment to yourself. Take pride in your honesty. I got you. I love you. You’re not alone. #MakeUpSociety #MakeupIsTheMatrix #Lgbtq #genderqueer #genderfluid #lipstick #lipstickittotheman #makeuptutorial #braveheart #lovewins (PS happy 666th post! So many people said in the comments I’d go to Hell for the way I put this on haha. Seems appropriate since heaven is in the clouds and I’m scared of heights. I used to be a firefighter, the flames don’t scare me much. )
Dykeanotherday is an account that posts historical photos and profiles of lesbians and other wlw. History may seem boring and out of date but this account is not.