Friday, March 9, 2012

How to automatically backup your Instagram photos

The other day my friend and I were commenting on how so many of our photos & Flickr feeds are all turning into Instagram streams ... it's so funny. It seems like we're all addicted to this little photo sharing Social Media app. I've been on the Instagram bandwagon for a while now & have hundreds of pictures on there - I'm trying to be a little better at saving & preserving & enjoying them - getting them off my phone & hard drive & into my life! I catch so many genuine adorable moments of the boys, I love to see them in print.

One of the things I did was print out a bunch of them & pin them to some bulletin boards in our kitchen. Dropping the Instagram photos onto some blank 4x6" canvases in Photoshop, getting them printed at Costco, and then chopping off the blank whitespace gave me perfect little 4x4" square pictures.

My InstaGram bulletin boards

I have my InstaGram hooked up to my Flickr account & usually simultaneously upload them to Flickr whenever I take an IG picture, but as another measure of security I found an even better way to automatically save & get the Instagram pictures backed-up right to a dedicated folder I can access from anywhere - in my Dropbox account.

how to automatically backup your IG photos

How to automatically backup your Instagram photos in 4 easy steps:

1. Have a Dropbox account (sign up for one here if you don't have one - it's a free cloud-based storage service)

2. Have a If This Then That (IFTTT) account (also free to sign up)

3. Create yourself a task, based off this recipe, in your IFTTT account to automatically add your new Instagram photos to your specified Dropbox folder any time you upload a new one.

Create a if this > then that recipe to trigger Instagram > Dropbox

4. That's it! They'll appear like magic in your Dropbox folder (which you can access from any computer as well as your iPhone or iPad).

Presto! Pictures automatically uploaded!

I am loving this simple & easy solution - love that it works in the background for me & does it without me even having to think about it. Then I know exactly where my IG pictures are saved if I want to grab one to print or link to on my blog.

I'm also loving If This Then That - there's tons of "recipes" you can use to create automated tasks so that you have the Internet working for you in the background - I use it for things like sending me a text message if it's going to snow soon, automatically save a picture I'm tagged in on Facebook to my Flickr account, adding my Yelp check-in history to my Google calender, etc. Super easy to use, looks nice & does what it's supposed to - I'm a fan!

Let me know if you try this backup solution & if it works great for you too!


  1. I wish I could use instagram! It's probably the top reason I want a better phone. And with the things you've shown and shared the temptation grows even more!

  2. Erin, this is genius! I keep thinking I need to back them up, and never do.

  3. Great idea! I use a more low-tech version: I use IG with an iPhone 3G. My phone automatically saves a copy in my camera roll which I can easily transfer to my computer.

    1. Hi Maggie! My iPhone 4s also saves to my camera roll & then to my computer ... I just like to have it saved somewhere additionally that I can access from any where! I'm kinda crazy about backing up my photos so I don't mind that they're saved multiple places. :]

    2. That's smart. I'm bad - I never back up anything. (I'm probably pushing my luck just saying this!!)

  4. That's amazing! I never heard of ifttt it's incredible. Thanks for sharing.

  5. How do you get your instagram Url?

  6. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  7. Thanks for the information.

    I jumped for joy when instagram landed on android. Now to get into the habit of doing it.

    Thanks for sharing. I appreciate learning new things.

  8. Thanks for this Erin! So glad I remembered reading this months ago!



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