- Patrick Dorsey, Editor, ESPN.com
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While Peyton Manning's new home is garnering plenty of attention, his old one feels the buzz as well, as the Indianapolis Colts' feverish fan base readies itself for the Andrew Luck era.
And that's something to capture on camera.
So the Colts' Instagram feed (@indianapoliscolts), which came to life in the month after Indy took the Stanford quarterback No. 1 in this year's draft, is bringing to 6,000-plus followers the sights and sounds (the latter in written form) from their outpost in nearby Anderson, Ind.
Some are action shots. Others show fans themselves. One of the most common kinds: Pictures from the team's interview sessions, each accompanied by a quote.
We caught up via email with Colts social media coordinator Andy Stayer -- a central Indiana native, sixth-year Colts employee and lifelong fan -- to talk about this intriguing Instagram feature, and much more:
"I’m excited to get going, anxious.” Andrew Luck #ColtStrong #Coltscamp #Moveinday
Full padded practice has arrived! The players are looking #COLTSTRONG at #ColtsCamp
First off, what’s behind the idea to do the interview picture/quote theme?
The idea of taking photos during all of our media availability was really just giving some life to simple quotes. It makes for a more intriguing post on Twitter or Facebook when there is something to look at as opposed to just reading a quote.
The real difficult part is keeping the quote and picture URL under 140 characters. Between the coaches and players on the Colts' roster, there are a ton of guys with outstanding personalities. They do a great job with the media, and it is hard to try and pick a quote that is short enough, yet still very effective.
"Now, you don’t know where I’m going to be at." @Dwightfreeney
"It's just going to take one day at a time and just build from there." Reggie Wayne #ColtsCamp
Who contributes to your feed?
The main contributors to the feed are myself, digital/social media assistant Casey Bolsega and team photographer Matt Bowen. The majority of the photos are done using our phones, but we use photos taken by Matt Bowen that really stand out to us. He does a great job of capturing a lot of action on the field with a real camera. A lot of times it just makes more sense to use photos he takes because he is able to get closer to the action. It is not as easy getting that faraway shot on an iPhone as it is with a real camera.
Andrew Luck throwing at #ColtsCamp looking #COLTSTRONG
Coach [Chuck] Pagano converts a Steelers fan into a Colts fan at #ColtsCamp #COLTSTRONG
What's your overall approach on Instagram?
When taking pictures, my thought process is, what is something a fan would like to see but they do not have the same kind of access as a team employee? That leads to a lot of behind-the-scenes shots that many fans just wouldn't have a chance to see if it were not for Instagram. Not only do fans get to see it, but they get to see it as it is actually happening.
Instagram is a very unique way to connect with fans instantly. We had a free minicamp practice at Lucas Oil Stadium this summer, and it was really the first major event that we were able to capture on Instagram. It was a great way to tell a story about the day as the day was going on. That is the same thing we want to do on game day.
For home games we want to take pictures of fans tailgating before the game all the way through until the players leave the building after the game. For road games our goal is to tell the Colts' story from the time the team arrives to the airport on Saturday, until the players get back to the airport after the game on Sunday.
Check out this photo of @tweez41 [Antoine Bethea] from minicamp #coltstrong
Andrew Luck walking out of the tunnel for the first time wearing the #Colts Horseshoe! #COLTSTRONG more photos from the mini-camp on colts.com
All photos courtesy of the Indianapolis Colts, on Instagram.
Team Pictures profiles professional and college teams on Instagram and other social media outlets. If you have a suggestion for a team that should be featured, tweet it at @DorseyPatrick or email him at bypatrickdorsey(at)gmail.com.