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Spotlight: St. Petersburg

Spotlight Since launching, we’ve seen Instagram spread from our headquarters in the Bay Area to every corner of the globe. In this series we’ll highlight top users from countries and cities with thriving Instagram communities.

"Rocks or stones, explain it as you want, but there is a mystery to St. Petersburg—it really affects your soul." Joseph Brodsky.

St. Petersburg is often called the cultural capital of Russia, but Russian poets such as Joseph Brodsky have highlighted that there is something even more special to the city. With a population of 5,000,000, for several centuries St. Petersburg has been a center for creative people to come together from throughout Russia. Now, the city is home to a growing Instagram community organizing InstaMeets and gatherings.

Want to see St Petersburg for yourself? We’ve gathered together a group of our favorite Instagrammers sharing photos and videos from the heart of St. Petersburg:

  • Vera Rolle, rooftops and nature – @verarolle
  • Maka Smirnova, foggy landscapes – @maka_smirnova
  • Stanislav Liepa, portraits and cityscapes – @liepa_s
  • Danya, portraits and InstaMeets – @tertiusalio

To explore the city in depth, you can also browse the location pages for some of St. Petersburg’s most popular landmarks:

documentary
documentary:

Sweetgrass
As much a work of cultural anthropology as it is a documentary, this unique film traces the path of a family of Montana sheepherders as they drive their flock down from the treacherous and beautiful Absaroka Beartooth mountain range. With no guiding narration, filmmakers Ilisa Barbash and Lucien Castaing-Taylor let the natural images speak for themselves, capturing the danger, pathos and humor in this haunting elegy to a bygone way of life.
Click the image above to view the film on Netflix Instant.

This was a very interesting film and it was certainly not what I was expecting at all when I went to class today. It started off with sheep and for a while I was just thinking about how cute they were (especially when they put pajamas on the baby one) but I found myself wondering where this film was going to go. It was also very jarring and I couldn’t figure out why until I realized there was no music. We were just right up in that whole world. 100%. And it was kind of brutal at least in the way the sheep were being handled. But once we got out of the farm and actually started the journey all the shots were smooth and serene and extremely beautiful. There were still little pockets of tension through out the drive but there was still this overwhelming sensation of openness and calmness. Just seriously lost in nature. It was soothing and refreshing after being stuck on this campus for what feels like forever.
It was really funny to me to watch this modern day rancher I guess you could call him, ring up his mom on a cell phone and bitch to her. Just cursing away about his “fucking ankle” and the “god damn fucking sheep.” Meanwhile he’s standing on top of this BEAUTIFUL hill overlooking this gorgeous valley with his little sheepdog sitting beside him. It was so strange. I wasn’t sure wether I was soothed by how gorgeous it was or empathize with this stressed rancher. I ended up laughing. That’s somewhere in the middle right. 
It was nice to see him hang up and look down at his dog and just be so adorably kind to him. 

documentary:

Sweetgrass

As much a work of cultural anthropology as it is a documentary, this unique film traces the path of a family of Montana sheepherders as they drive their flock down from the treacherous and beautiful Absaroka Beartooth mountain range. With no guiding narration, filmmakers Ilisa Barbash and Lucien Castaing-Taylor let the natural images speak for themselves, capturing the danger, pathos and humor in this haunting elegy to a bygone way of life.

Click the image above to view the film on Netflix Instant.

This was a very interesting film and it was certainly not what I was expecting at all when I went to class today. It started off with sheep and for a while I was just thinking about how cute they were (especially when they put pajamas on the baby one) but I found myself wondering where this film was going to go. It was also very jarring and I couldn’t figure out why until I realized there was no music. We were just right up in that whole world. 100%. And it was kind of brutal at least in the way the sheep were being handled. But once we got out of the farm and actually started the journey all the shots were smooth and serene and extremely beautiful. There were still little pockets of tension through out the drive but there was still this overwhelming sensation of openness and calmness. Just seriously lost in nature. It was soothing and refreshing after being stuck on this campus for what feels like forever.

It was really funny to me to watch this modern day rancher I guess you could call him, ring up his mom on a cell phone and bitch to her. Just cursing away about his “fucking ankle” and the “god damn fucking sheep.” Meanwhile he’s standing on top of this BEAUTIFUL hill overlooking this gorgeous valley with his little sheepdog sitting beside him. It was so strange. I wasn’t sure wether I was soothed by how gorgeous it was or empathize with this stressed rancher. I ended up laughing. That’s somewhere in the middle right. 

It was nice to see him hang up and look down at his dog and just be so adorably kind to him.