arts • 11 May, 2017
Insta Elite @tasteofthebear
Nature, food and a touch of Americana through the lens of Nam Nguyen
Apart from providing us with some travel-inspo, food envy, urban style guides and a look at the American experience, Nam Nguyen (@tasteofthebear), gave us some on-point advice when it comes to taking instagram pics. “Before you are about to take a photo, take a step back, look at the big picture and think about why you are about to capture this image. What is your real subject and what story do you want to tell?” We think the underlying message might be ‘less is more’. We caught up the Viet expat as he went about his California day.
Hi Nam! We’ve been looking at your feed - wow. Can you tell us about yourself?
Hi guys! My name is Nam Nguyen. I’m a social media specialist working in the Orange County area in California. I also work as an editorial assistant and marketing executive for Nếp Magazine, which is a brand new quarterly food and lifestyle magazine published by Kitchen Art Vietnam.
What inspires you Nam?
I find inspiration through food, people, and the cultures I’ve visited. I also have a strong passion for marketing, branding and social media. That’s why I chose to come to the US to learn more about it.
Your feed is called ‘taste of the bear’. Can you explain it?
I think the bear is a gentle, tolerant and somewhat cute animal. The bear is also the symbol of California, the state where I live and work. “Taste” also has various meanings, for example the sense that distinguishes flavor, a personal preference, or even the ability to discern aesthetic, artistic or intellectual matters. My Instagram account is about the discovering the taste of food, travel and life!
Why did you start it?
I used to be a food stylist and seasonal decorator for several businesses in Hanoi, so I started my Instagram as a portfolio where I showcased my work, personal projects and stories.
Could you describe it in three words?
Genuine, Versatile and Lively
Do you plan much before you post?
I don’t spend much time planning before I post, unless I have to follow the timeline or procedure of a brand as an influencer. Mostly I post in my free time or when I travel.
What’s your tip for taking the best photos?
Only that before you are about to take a photo, take a step back, look at the big picture and think about why you are about to capture this image. What is your real subject and what story do you want to tell?
Good advice. What is the most memorable snapshot in your entire feed?
Sorry but I simply can’t pick any shots that are more memorable than others! I try to tell a story in everything I capture. Each of them is unique and important to me.
What makes a great instagram feed in your opinion?
I would say the personality and taste of the person behind the grid. I tend to follow people who have great taste in food and travel. Humour and positivity also catch my attention.
Do you use any programs or apps to edit your photos?
I use VSCO, Snapseed and instagram itself to edit my photos.
If your instagram wall were a food, what do you think it would it be?
An avocado. It’s delicious, healthy and you can make both savoury and sweet dishes with it. It’s also good for your emotional balance!
What are your favourite accounts?
Funnily enough I don’t have any favourite accounts that I follow everyday on instagram even though I do follow a lot. I mostly follow friends, brands, business partners and meme accounts. I find my inspiration from reading magazines, blogs and by going out and talking to people.
Images courtesy of @tasteofthebear
Words by AA