Personal social media pages are known for often glorifying the truth. People’s online profiles may contrast with their real-life personalities. Strategic influencers armed with the weapon of Photoshop fill Instagram feeds with manufactured images of “perfect” lives.

As I was reflecting on these themes during summer 2020, I asked myself the questions, “What if I created a page that was designed not to showcase my real life, but rather to display my dream life? How could I push the boundaries of my own existence by reimagining my personal life?”

Then, I made plans to answer those questions by developing and publishing an Instagram page.

My goal for this project was to create a “dream/inspiration” page that would turn the experience of Instagram into a Pinterest-like experience that was visually driven and focused on inspiration over reality. I created this page under the name “Emma’s Happy Place,” and the project quickly adopted a nature- and travel-focused approach as I started to consider the ways in which a deep connection to nature and open access to the world might influence my dream life.

For my first post, I chose one of my favorite photos of hiking in Colorado. The mountains are a physical “happy place” for me, so I wanted to start my digital happy place there, as well.

While I have taken a pause from this project to focus on my college studies, I would be interested in continuing this project in the future to further explore the differences between perceived/online identity and true identity.

See This Previous Project Here: https://www.instagram.com/emmas.happy.place/.

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