If you use Instagram as a part of your content strategy, then you’re probably aware of the company’s latest app, Layout, which launched in March. Layout is a standalone app, and it’s a new, fun way to create collages that you can send straight to Instagram.
Why It’s Different
Other third-party apps such as PicStitch are on the market and allow users to create collages, but Layout creates collages without borders. It seems like a simple difference, but it creates a seamless image no matter how many photos are used.
How It Works
When you open the app, you have two options: Select up to nine photos from your camera roll or take one to four pictures in photo booth mode using the front-facing camera (also called the “selfie” camera). The app has 16 photo layouts form which to choose, with variations for vertical or horizontal layouts. Once you have the photos placed, you can tap into each box to zoom in or out on each individual image, or hold down on one panel to rearrange images within the layout. You can also adjust the size of a panel or a row of images by dragging the bars that surround each box. This flexibility means you can make all your images fit no matter what their size or shape.
A user also can make more than collages. A single photo can be placed into a two-image layout with a mirror function that can flip photos and create reflective or kaleidoscopic images.
As destination marketers, there are a number of potential uses for Layout. The tool creates amazing scenery shots, and it allows you to share photos of attractions, restaurants and other must-visit places in a way people have never have seen before. Here are a few examples:
1. Create a collage of the same image taken at different times of day.
2. Create a seamless mirror image.
3. Group together like images.
4. Split one image to create two or more different centerpoints.
5. Create a Brady Bunch-style collage (with or without cats).
Once you master these basics, you can get even more creative with objects and people in photos. Layout is currently available for iOS only, but an Android version is in the works.