Life by Selena Photography
Montreal portrait & wedding photographer


The official blog of Montreal portrait and wedding photographer Selena Phillips-Boyle. Explore her signature photojournalistic style and stay up to date on her latest wedding and portrait photography projects here.

47 : Davis and Tom

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How to Pick up a Cutie on Social Media
(Case Study: Instagram)

Step 1: Acquire Your Target
The first step is to use social media to help you meet new people. Do some low-key stalking to determine if they’re an appropriate target (read: cute and available and cool). Using the search function on Instagram, look up accounts that you like, hashtags for things you’re interested in, or places you enjoy going to. Using the notifications tab, look up accounts of people you’re already following and explore accounts they’re interacting with. See who’s tagged in their photos. Stalk around for attractive humans.

Step 2: First Contact
This step requires a subtle hand as you initiate the first interaction with your newly acquired target. You want to like their photos, but you don’t want to be too obvious. Start off lightly. Use a bit of stealth by liking three regular photos per every one selfie. Whatever you do, don’t go through their entire photo history all at once because that’s creepy and awkward.

Step 3: Their Response
Ideally, at this step the interaction will become reciprocal. They’ll like a few of your photos back. Bonus points if they like a few of your selfies. At this step, the best case scenario will lead to them following your account.

Step 4: Follow Them
If they’ve already taken the initiative to follow you in Step 3, the decision to follow them back in Step 4 is straightforward. Be cool and resist the urge to follow them back the moment you get the notification, but no need to be old-fashioned and wait three days. If they haven’t followed you back in Step 3, you can still take the initiative for Step 4 and follow them -- but only if you really like their materials.
**Only proceed to Step 5 if you’re both following each other. Otherwise, it’s creepy and you should pause/stop interactions.**

Step 5: First Comment
Start with an innocuous comment on one of their photos. Ideally, comment on something that has a real world connection. For example, if they post a comment at a coffee shop or a restaurant you like, consider commenting, “love that restaurant!” Or if they post something that is of mutual interest, engage with that material. For example, they post a photo of their garden, consider commenting, “I love gardening!” It sounds absurd, but it works! If they like or reply to your comment, this is a really good sign.

Step 6: Sliding into their DMs
If Steps 1-5 didn’t already sound tricky enough, Step 6 is really the hardest step. There are different ways to do this. It can be wise to wait a certain amount of time after the initial comment interaction. The best way is to riff off of an interaction that happened on public comments. For example, if you’ve established that you both like coffee or have a shared coffee shop you frequent, you can initiate a direct message that says “Hey! Would you like to grab a coffee sometime?”

How this shook down for Davis and Tom

Davis executed Step 1 because Tom was a friend of a friend she was connected with on Instagram. She saw Tom in a few of her friend’s photos and thought, “there’s a cutie!” She initiated Step 2 by liking a few photos, which Tom reciprocated with in Step 3. Step 4 proceeded smoothly and they were both following each other when Tom commented on a photo of hers. The photo Davis posted was from “Ministry of Coffee” in Ottawa, and Tom commented, “oh, I was standing in line behind you”. Perfect! Davis moved to Step 6 by sending Tom a selfie from MOC. Tom did not reply. BACKFIRE.

Ottawa is such a small city that Tom ignored the DM because he thought that Davis had sent it to the wrong person. Instagram told Davis that Tom had received and seen the photo, and when he didn’t reply she thought, “well, I guess this is never going to happen”. A couple of months later Tom commented on a photo of cocktails that Davis posted saying, “we make the best cocktails at the Moon Room”. She replied to the comment, and next thing you know Tom sent her a DM. It wasn’t long before they went on their first coffee date at MOC. This cutie was officially picked up.

This blog post is based on material from a conversation with Davis and Tom about how they met. This Life by Selena Photography blog post about couple photography was created by Montreal photographer Selena Phillips-Boyle. Based in Montreal, Selena often travels to Toronto, Ottawa, and Edmonton for projects, and is open to project inquiries worldwide. This post was edited by Montreal writer Hannah Storrs. This photo session was done in Hintonburg, Ottawa, the Ottawa neighbourhood Davis and Tom call home, and at Ministry of Coffee, their regular go-to for coffee and beer. Here you can see another couples photo session photographed in Montreal.

Cet article de blogue sur la photographie de couple Life by Selena était créé par Selena Phillips-Boyle, photographe montréalaise. Cet article de blogue fut révisé par l’écrivaine montréalaise Hannah Storrs.