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Theophilus London and Other Artists on How They're Using Instagram

What do Theophilus London (pictured above), Waka Flocka Flame, and T. Mills all have in common? Aside from their undeniable talent on the mic, all three artists have embraced Instagram.

Since its 2010 launch, the photo-sharing app has gained a massive following of users and celebrities alike (and a valuation of $1 billion, thanks to Facebook). We recently had the opportunity to chat with each of the aforementioned musicians on why they joined, who they follow, and how they use Instagram.

• • •

THEOPHILUS LONDON

DETAILS: What attracted you to Instagram?
THEOPHILUS LONDON: When I joined Instagram, I was growing pretty tired of Facebook and Twitter. They kept changing the websites, updating and moving shit around. I just like things the way they are. I'm used to routine, and I wanted to keep doing that routine.

DETAILS: As an artist, how do you benefit from using Instagram?
THEOPHILUS LONDON: A lot of young kids like myself use Instagram because it has swag—it's more personal, and your friends generate it. Instagram also has the mentality of "I got an iPhone and you got a BlackBerry"—you can't follow anyone with a BlackBerry on there! I definitely benefit from using it as an artist by being able to be myself.

DETAILS: You posted some photos of yourself with Karl Lagerfeld. What was it like working with him?
THEOPHILUS LONDON: It was great! I was a little scared at first. I had to do a photo shoot with Chanel, and I get there and I'm all dressed in, like, a ski outfit. I was wearing a Levi's ski jacket from the seventies with a black Burberry hat. Then Karl and Yoko Ono walk in, and I'm like, "Whoa, this is a big deal." It was great. I played this one song for him that he really liked. Karl had a platinum iPad to play tunes on and we were dancing and just swagging out. It was super-fun; it was a cool moment.

DETAILS: Do you have any collaborations in the works, music- or fashion-wise?
THEOPHILUS LONDON: Yeah, a lot! I have a new record with Big Boi from Atlanta. Fashion-wise, I'm working on these loafers with this guy in Miami. (Expect velvet low-cut with our LVRS trademark, very sexy.) But I'm trying to keep it light. Not trying to do too much at the same time, so I can be out there and be present with it.

DETAILS: Do you follow any girls on Instagram?
THEOPHILUS LONDON: Yeah! I follow girls with big booties. You know, girls showing some skin, getting all personal up on the Instagram. I follow some porn stars, too. There are definitely photos that catch my eye on there.

DETAILS: You use the hashtag #rare very often. What does that mean to you?
THEOPHILUS LONDON: When I say "rare," it's my own term. It's like you're doing something with a photo that is dominant that no one has ever seen before. #Rare means that it can only be seen here. It's just a rare moment that I'm sharing with the world.

You can follow Theophilus London on Instagram at @TheophilusLondon.

• • •

WAKA FLOCKA FLAME

waka_blog.jpg

DETAILS: What made you join Instagram?
WAKA FLOCKA FLAME: To me, Instagram is more one-on-one. Not as much is going on at once, like on Twitter. I can take my time with it. It's also easier to comment and get responses immediately.

DETAILS: Why do you have two different Instagram accounts?
WAKA FLOCKA FLAME: I got two different personalities, baby!

DETAILS: One of your Instagram pics shows you recording via Pro Tools in the backseat of a car. How did that come about?
WAKA FLOCKA FLAME: That's right! It was just a regular mixtape song. Someone told me they had a portable Pro Tools, so I said, "Shit, let's throw that in the backseat of the car!" I did double drops in the backseat, did a verse… that shit was real cool!

DETAILS: You also posted a photo of yourself getting inked. What tattoo were you getting, and what music were you listening to at the time?
WAKA FLOCKA FLAME: Oh! Yeah, I was getting "Riverdale" tatted on the top of my back, and I was listening to my new album, Triple F Life. But honestly, I listen to all the old hood music. No Limit, Three 6 Mafia—whatever keeps my head bopping keeps me in the zone.

DETAILS: Another amusing photo you posted is of a Louis Vuitton garbage can. Is that real?
WAKA FLOCKA FLAME: Ha ha, no, that wasn't real! Let's just say we found it in the club.

DETAILS: Louis Vuitton did recently come out with a designer condom. Would you use it?
WAKA FLOCKA FLAME: Say who?! A designer condom? Oh man, that's wild. I want that! I need that! I would use it, definitely.

DETAILS: Do you follow any girls on Instagram?
WAKA FLOCKA FLAME: I ain't gonna lie, Instagram got some fine-ass women. It's become a big competition on there.

You can follow the two personalities of Waka Flocka Flame on Instagram at @WakaFlockaBSM and @BSMCeo.

• • •

T. MILLS

tmills_blog.jpg

DETAILS: What made you join Instagram?
T. MILLS: To be honest with you, I would always see people's pictures and wonder, "How did they do that effect on it?" And then someone told me about Instagram. I thought it was really cool that a platform could go beyond filtering your photos like Hipstamatic or apps like that.

DETAILS: As an artist, do you benefit from using Instagram?
T. MILLS: Definitely, I started using it and linked Instagram to my Twitter to get my fans to follow and grow my network. Then I noticed the popular page and how that shit worked. I like the fact that I can post a picture, and if a lot of people like it, it goes to the popular page. People who might not know about my music may be intrigued by one of my photos and become a fan that way.

DETAILS: How does Instagram help you connect with your fans?
T. MILLS: My fans want to know what I'm eating, where I'm playing, what I'm doing, and so forth. It's cool to have those moments captured and to have a designated network to share them. It's like blogging, revised on a much easier access level, and I can do it all through my phone.

DETAILS: Be honest: Have you followed any girls on Instagram?
T. MILLS: Ha ha! I actually met a girl who was in my music video on Instagram; that's how she was cast.

DETAILS: Who do you recommend following on Instagram?
T. MILLS: Me! Duh.

You can follow T. Mills on Instagram at @TMills.

• • •

—Alanna Raben is a native New Yorker with a knack for journalism, DJ'ing, and filmmaking. Follow her on Twitter at @alannaraben.


Also on Details.com:
Q&A: Bad Brains
Q&A: Theophilus London
Instagram Founders Mike Krieger and Kevin Systrom

Photos courtesy of the artists
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