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Our favorite IG accounts, like chef Peter Barlow's, plate up stunning photos but also a piece of Dallas.EXPAND
Our favorite IG accounts, like chef Peter Barlow's, plate up stunning photos but also a piece of Dallas.
Kevin Marple c/o Peter Barlow

20 Dallas Instagram Accounts Worth Following

What purpose does Instagram serve in your life? Do you use it to keep up with photophilic friends as they travel, eat and pose? Perhaps you follow celebrities and musicians to see how mega-successful folks live. But you could also use Instagram to connect to where you live, filling your feed with local influencers, artists, chefs and oddities.

Finding these folks can be a challenge given the constant changes to how Instagram works. That's why we've picked up the slack, bringing 20 Dallas accounts that exemplify whatever we think "good content" is. It won't be anywhere near comprehensive, and you can expect updates and additions in the future. But we promise every account here is worth following, if only to expand your appreciation of Dallas.

Artists

Jeremy Biggers / @stemandthorn

If you can appreciate it with your eyes, multitalented artist Jeremy Biggers has tried it. You can often recognize his work by its fascination and meditation on lips, as well as an ongoing attempt to explore "feelings of being multiple people simultaneously." Not surprisingly, Biggers himself operates as a creator, a father and a professional artist. You can often see works in progress in his feed, complete with stories of inspiration.

Royalty Soaps / @royaltysoaps

Arlington resident Katie Carson is better known online as the Duchess of Suds, the senior of a pair of sibling soap-makers who compose the Royalty Soaps brand. Those who haven't dipped their toes into the scented waters of YouTube soap-making might wonder why anyone would care. But Royalty Soaps doesn't churn out simple white and green ovoids. Their Instagram is a testament that any skill can be elevated to an art form. Plus, they post about new releases and deals, so it's often the best way to clinch your own limited release bar.

Brent Ozaeta / @chineseknees

Print-making is a deceptively simple and labor-intensive form of art, and Dallas boasts its share of talented makers. Among them is Brent Ozaeta, an artist with a keen eye for adopting pop culture and animation influence into his work. What could be overwhelming details instead portray the fullness of life brought full force to the foreground. His account showcases recent designs and the places you might find him selling prints.

Anayancy Gonzalez / @die__yung

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Sleepless gliding over the city lights

A post shared by Anayancy Gonzalez (@die__yung) on

Whether she's photographing human subjects or fixtures of the Dallas (and sometimes California) landscape, Anayancy Gonzalez manages to convey a sense of the ephemeral. The saturated colors and burning lights suggest she captured a scene from someone's dream. You can also find work on her page that explores emotional vulnerability, sensual strength and a celebration of femininity's more badass qualities.

Food

Reye Duong / @chefreyeduong

Regular readers will recognize our love for the Sandwich Hag herself, chef Reye Duong. Her Vietnamese restaurant has been racking up accolades both here in Texas and in national publications, which has likely been a salve on a rough year for both restaurant and owner. But we're happy to have plenty of reasons to return to Sandwich Hag in 2020. Follow her account for mouth-watering shots of classic recipes and a peek into the world of Dallas chefs on and off the clock.

Peter Barlow / @elchefpeter

The chef of Fauna has made our Instagram lists twice because his account is just that good. Barlow has a frankly unfair combination of talents for creating food that looks and tastes incredible. Whether he's plated burning hay around an oyster or captured the slow drizzle of sauce over lamb, he shows the most beautiful side of food. Just don't browse while hungry. (Editor's note: Peter Barlow is the boyfriend of our food editor, Taylor Adams, but the author of this story didn't know that when he decided to include Barlow's Instagram site.)

Best Food Dallas / @bestfooddallas

The amount of good food in Dallas can boggle the mind. That's why we try to offer readers curated recommendations and reviews. But sometimes you're hungry right now, and that's where Best Food Dallas can help. Our local branch of the Best Food network trawls the city in search of 'grammable food everywhere. From the humble diner to the outrageous pop-up, you just might find your next favorite in their feed.

Cuzzo / @cuzzoab

Ever heard of mukbang? The Korean-borne phenomenon of live eating broadcasts has been gaining popularity abroad, and Cuzzo's style is bold with a capital B. Beginning every broadcast with a confident "Let's go ahead and get into this bite," she proceeds to systematically demolish a heaping plate of seafood, fried chicken or other dinner. A word of caution: Cuzzo is not a demure eater and enjoys the meal and conversation with plenty of mouth sounds. But her joie de vivre over cracking a crawfish is downright infectious.

Photographers

Reed J. Kenney / @reedjkenney

You'd be hard pressed to define Dallas photographer Reed J. Kenney by one attribute. Yes, his food photographs are awash in delectable colors. But what about the displays of power and muscle captured in his action shots? Or how he portrays people at their jobs as if they are in complete control? What we're saying is there's plenty of reasons to keep an eye on his feed.

Kathy Tran / @kathytranx

Avid Dallas Observer readers will recognize Kathy Tran's name, if not her face, from many slideshows on our site. Don't think we're doing any favors by including her on this list; Tran is so busy it exhausts us to simply look at her Instagram page. She captures her own life with an expert's eye, but it's the work she does for people and places around the city (and abroad) that really sell why you should be keeping up with her exploits.

Sean Berry / @seanberryphoto

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Same beautiful save, two beautiful views.

A post shared by Sean Berry (@seanberryphoto) on

One of Dallas' many identities is that of a sports city. With so many internationally known franchises, it's no wonder we're also home to some fantastic sports photographers. Sean Berry is on this list because his feed showcases athletes on two ends of a spectrum. The action shots show them as performers at the top of their game and in their natural habitat, but you can also see them without the jersey, smiling or resting. You know, being human.

Ben Zavala / @lovesDFW

Now, here's someone who seems to love the city of Dallas, not some small piece of its culture nor a certain building. Ben Zavala's Instagram account is a love letter to the physical presence of Dallas. From its skyline at dawn to the play of skyscraper lights off glass in the dead of night, it seems like he's endeavored to portray every angle possible. When you work and play among everything, it can be easy to forget that the whole of Dallas can be quite beautiful.

Pets

Lennon the Yorkie / @lennon_yorkie

Yeah, it would be hard to compile a list of notable Dallas Instagram accounts and not include Lennon, a dog seemingly tailor-built to illicit "aww"s from all humanity. But the self stylized "Dallas' littlest foodie" is more interested in sampling the best bites in the city. Follow his account for the expected cute poses and outfits and whatnot, but keep a sharp eye for any dinner recommendations. We have to admit: the dog has good taste.

Nelson & Co. / @nelsonthegoldendoodle

Another dog about town is Nelson, a goldendoodle who is more than happy to pose in front of local landmarks. But lucky Dallasites might have caught a glimpse of him riding sidecar in his owners' silver Vespa, a smart pair of aviator goggles strapped around his curly noggin. Come for the doggy high jinks among him and his pack of large, floppy siblings, stay for the rare chance of catching him tearing up a downtown street.

Pepper the Cat / @the_only_pepper_the_cat

All right, enough dogs. It's time to pay due to the undisputed champs of household pets (please excuse the obvious bias, readers). Pepper the Cat is a smart little tuxedo boy who isn't above sporting the occasional bow tie. He enjoys exploring the local environs on a leash and has even trained his owner to reward him every time he rings a small bell. Good going, Pepper. Exploit our weak wills.

Benny the Cat / @itsbennythecat

Benny the Cat brings balance to the cat and dog dichotomy on this list, but he also reveals a little more of my bias. See, I'm an Aggie and can't resist the urge to share a member of the family living such a good bull life. He too loves walks and naps, but bring a pineapple into the house and that boy will demand a sniff. Keep it up, Benny. Thanks, and Gig 'Em.

Activism/Awareness


Dallas Pets Alive / @dallaspetsalive

It's likely evident by now that we're animal lovers, which is why Dallas Pets Alive made the first list in our activism category. In a city the size of Dallas (including suburbs), plenty of strays and pets spend their lives roughing the harsh Texas seasons without shelter or care. The folks at Dallas Pets Alive dedicate their time and energy connecting homes with pets through both adoption and foster services, while educating Dallasites on best care practices. Whether you're looking for a companion or simply a fan of adoption, their account is worth following.

Niecee X Asantewaa / @nieceex

I simply don't know where activist, artist, community organizer and business owner Niecee X Asantewaa finds the time. They're opening Revolution Cafe & Bookstore, the first establishment of its kind in Dallas to specifically focus on the city's QTPOC community (queer and trans people of color). They work with other local musicians, poets and artists to set up shows and galleries. And they use their Instagram account to provide messages of love and support to their peers. Stay tapped in to a vibrant crowd who don't often get the mainstream coverage they deserve.

The Dallas Feminist Collective / @dallasfeministcollective

Speaking of staying tapped in, the Dallas Feminist Collective's Instagram account provides a public account of their fight to educate and enact change at the city's legislative level. "[We] work on issues that our city faces, mostly by amplifying, supporting, and connecting the community with organizations that are already doing amazing work in our city," they said in a message. One of their guiding ethos remains the intersection of feminism and justice reform, especially regarding state prisons.

Niha Elety / @nihaelety

Niha Elety is a model, activist and beauty influencer whose account is chock full of her showcasing Desi fashion and jewelry. Often attached to posts are stories from her childhood in India, facts about ongoing struggles and information about traditional holidays like Diwali. Additionally, Elety shares information about her own vegan and sustainable lifestyle and mental health journey. There's plenty of makeup shots for those just here for the looks. But why not educate yourself a bit, as well?

That's it for the first list of Dallas Instagrammers worth your following. It's not an exhaustive selection nor even a "best" list. But everyone here brings something to Dallas worth celebrating, from activists to chefs to adorable pets. Do you have an Instagrammer you think should be featured? Please feel free to send an email my way, and perhaps they'll make the next list.  

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