How to Make Reels on Instagram with Photos: Step-by-Step Guide

Last Update:

8 mins

Transform your photos into captivating Instagram Reels with our practical and user-friendly guide.


Reviewed by Chloe Bidle

Creative social media strategist, driving engagement and innovation.

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  1. Best Ways to Make Amazing IG Reels with Photos
    1. Choose Engaging Photos
    2. Use a Variety of Photos
    3. Arrange Photos in a Storytelling Sequence
    4. Add Music That Complements Your Theme
    5. Apply Creative Transitions Between Photos
    6. Use Text Overlays for Context
    7. Keep the Reel Short and Snappy
    8. Experiment with Effects and Filters
    9. Preview and Edit Before Posting
    10. Engage with Comments and Feedback
  2. How to Make an Instagram Reel with Multiple Pictures
  3. How to Make a Reel with Pictures and Music on Instagram
  4. Can You Make a Reel with Photos from My Camera Roll
  5. Wrapping Up
  6. Frequently Asked Questions
    1. Can you add music to an Instagram reel made from photos, and how?
    2. What is the maximum number of photos you can include in an Instagram reel?
    3. How can you make a photo collage reel on Instagram?
    4. What are the differences between making reels on iPhone and Android with photos?
    5. Is it possible to post pictures alongside reels on Instagram, and what is the process?

Creating engaging video content on Instagram has never been easier, especially as we navigate the digital landscape of 2023. With the rise of Instagram Reels, a feature that lets you create quick, entertaining videos set to music, Instagram continues to stay at the forefront of social media innovation. Reels offer a dynamic way to showcase your creativity, using not only video clips but also a series of photos. Whether you're looking to grow your following, share moments from your life, or broaden your brand's online presence, mastering the art of making a Reel with photos is an essential skill in today's social media toolkit.

To get started with your Instagram Reel, begin by selecting the create function accessible via the plus (+) sign on the Instagram app. This feature allows for a seamless transition from still images to a flowing video narrative, all within the comfort of Instagram's native environment. The process is straightforward: upload your photos, choose a fitting audio track from Instagram’s extensive music library, and stitch everything together for your audience to enjoy. By turning your photo gallery into a Reel, you have the opportunity to tell a story that's as visually appealing as it is dynamic, all while tapping into the growing trend of short-form video content on social media platforms.

Best Ways to Make Amazing IG Reels with Photos

Creating striking Instagram Reels with photos is about combining visual appeal with storytelling. This section walks you through the process from selecting the right images to engaging with your audience post-upload.

Choose Engaging Photos

Select photos that are high-quality and evoke emotions. Your photos should align with your brand or personal style and resonate with your target audience.

Use a Variety of Photos

Incorporate different types of photos from your camera roll to create a dynamic Reel. A mix of close-ups, wide shots, and action photos can keep viewers interested.

Arrange Photos in a Storytelling Sequence

Organize your photos to narrate a story. The sequence should have a clear beginning, middle, and end, guiding the viewer through the message you want to communicate.

Add Music That Complements Your Theme

Select a track from the music library that supports the mood of your Reel. Trending audio can also increase the reach of your Reel as it's more likely to be featured in the explore section.

Apply Creative Transitions Between Photos

Smooth transitions keep the viewer engaged and improve the Reel's flow. Use your video editor's templates or manually create unique transitions to give your Reel a professional touch.

Use Text Overlays for Context

Text overlays and captions give context to your photos. Use different fonts and styles to highlight important messages or add animated text for emphasis.

Keep the Reel Short and Snappy

The duration matters; too long can bore viewers. Ideally, keep your Reel between 15 to 30 seconds. Trim any excess to keep your content snappy.

Experiment with Effects and Filters

Enhance your photos with effects and filters to create a signature look or feel. Adding stickers, gifs, or playful elements can make your Reel more entertaining.

Preview and Edit Before Posting

Before you export and share, use the preview function to review your Reel. Make any necessary edits to ensure your message is clear and the visual flow is uninterrupted.

Engage with Comments and Feedback

After posting, monitor your Reel's performance. Engage with comments to foster a community and use feedback to refine your Reel-making process. Remember to use relevant hashtags and tag people for wider exposure.

Using this methodical approach ensures that your Instagram Reels will captivate and engage your followers, extending your digital footprint and enhancing your online presence.

How to Make an Instagram Reel with Multiple Pictures

Creating a captivating Instagram Reel with multiple photos involves a few straightforward steps. Before you begin, ensure you have the latest version of the Instagram app installed on your device.

  1. Open Instagram: Launch the app on your iPhone or Android phone.

  2. Access Reels: Swipe right from your home screen to reach the camera viewfinder. Select ‘Reel’ at the bottom of the screen.

  3. Choose Photos: Tap on the Gallery icon found typically at the bottom left. Use the drop-down menu to select photos from specific albums.

    Step Action
    1 Tap 'Gallery'
    2 Select album
    3 Add photos
  4. Template Selection: For a cohesive look, explore Reels templates which pre-set transitions and music. It allows you to align your photos with the rhythm of the soundtrack seamlessly.

  5. Customize Your Reel: Arrange the photos in your desired order. You can also add text, stickers, or voice-over to personalize the Reel.

  6. Preview and Edit: Review your Reel. Here you can trim clips or adjust the duration of each photo within the Reel.

  7. Add Music: Select a soundtrack from Instagram’s music library that complements your photos.

  8. Sharing Your Creation: Once satisfied, tap ‘Share to’ and choose whether to post it to your feed or share with select friends.

By following this step-by-step guide, you'll have a dynamic Instagram Reel featuring your selected photos, ready to engage your audience.

How to Make a Reel with Pictures and Music on Instagram

Creating a Reel with your photos and music on Instagram adds a lively element to your profile. It allows you to showcase your creativity using a combination of visual and auditory elements. Here’s how you can put together a picture-based Reel with the added touch of music:

Step 1: Accessing Reel Creation

  • Open your Instagram app.
  • Navigate to the Instagram stories camera and select the 'Reel' option at the bottom of the screen.

Step 2: Uploading Photos

  • Swipe up to access your gallery or tap the gallery icon.
  • Select the photos you want to include in your Reel.

Step 3: Adding Music or Audio

  • Tap on the 'audio' icon to access Instagram’s music library.
  • Choose from trending audios or search for a specific track.
  • Alternatively, use original audio by recording a voice-over or using sounds from your environment.

Step 4: Synchronization

  • Once your music is selected, arrange your photos to match the rhythm or beats of the music.

Step 5: Editing and Effects

  • Add text, stickers, or special effects for more engagement.
  • Use the editing tools to trim and align clips to your satisfaction.

Step 6: Publishing Your Reel

  • Preview your Reel.
  • Add captions and hashtags.
  • Share it to your Reel feed and explore the option to share on your story as well.

Remember, the key to a compelling Reel is how well your visuals mesh with the audio. Engage your audience by choosing the right photos and pairing them with music that enhances the storytelling aspect of your Reel.

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Can You Make a Reel with Photos from My Camera Roll

Yes, you can create Instagram Reels directly from the photos in your camera roll. This feature enables you to showcase your memories and creative ideas seamlessly as dynamic, short-form content on your Instagram feed. To create a Reel with your own photos, follow these straightforward steps:

  1. Accessing the Reels Tab On your Instagram home screen, swipe right or tap the camera icon in the top-left corner to open the camera. At the bottom of the screen, navigate to the 'Reels' tab.

  2. Uploading Photos from Camera Roll Once you're in the Reels interface, swipe up on the screen or tap the gallery icon located in the bottom-left corner. This action will open your camera roll, where you can select the photo or multiple photos you’d like to use in your Reel.

  3. Editing and Duration After selecting your photos, you can adjust their display duration per photo to create a cohesive flow. Instagram allows you each photo to show for a few seconds before transitioning to the next.

  4. Adding Music and Text Customize your Reel further by adding music, text, or other creative elements. Tap the music icon to search and select a track from Instagram's music library to set the mood for your Reel.

  5. Sharing Your Reel Once edited to your liking, you can share the Reel. It will appear on your Instagram feed, where your followers can view and interact with it.

Remember to preview your Reel before sharing to ensure everything looks as you intended. By following these steps, you can transform your camera roll snapshots into engaging Reels for your audience.

Wrapping Up

Creating Instagram Reels from your photos is an effective way to share engaging content on your profile. As you've learned, both iOS and Android smartphones are equipped to handle this task seamlessly through Instagram’s native app. Remember to upload your photos, and add music, effects, or voice-over to give your Reels an edge.

When experimenting with different topics, track your insights to understand which types of content resonate with your audience. As your comfort with the Instagram interface grows, consider exploring third-party apps to further enhance your creativity. Remember to:

  • Open the Instagram app, tap the Plus (+) icon, and select 'Reel'.
  • Choose photos from your gallery or take new ones directly within the app.
  • Customize your Reel using editing tools, filters, and text.

Once you're satisfied with your creation, hit publish to share your story with the world. Your Reel will appear both on your profile and in the feed of followers, potentially reaching new audiences through the Explore page.

Keep in mind:

  • Smartphone capabilities: Newer models may offer more advanced editing features.
  • Native App vs. Third-Party Apps: Instagram’s own tools are constantly improving, but don’t hesitate to try external applications for unique effects.

By following these straightforward steps and using the array of available tools, you can produce captivating Reels that highlight your experiences and interests.

Frequently Asked Questions

In this section, you'll find targeted answers to some of the most common queries on creating Instagram reels using photos.

Can you add music to an Instagram reel made from photos, and how?

Yes, you can add music to your photo reel. After selecting your photos, tap the Audio button on the left-hand side panel to choose a song from Instagram's music library.

What is the maximum number of photos you can include in an Instagram reel?

Instagram reels allow you to create videos up to 60 seconds long. The number of photos you can include is not fixed; it depends on the duration you set for each photo.

How can you make a photo collage reel on Instagram?

To make a photo collage reel, you need to use a third-party app to create the collage, then upload the collage image as a single photo within the reel.

What are the differences between making reels on iPhone and Android with photos?

The steps for creating reels with photos are generally the same on both iPhone and Android. However, there may be slight variations in the user interface or functionality due to the specific operating system updates.

Is it possible to post pictures alongside reels on Instagram, and what is the process?

Reels and pictures are separate content types on Instagram. You can't post static photos alongside a reel within the same post. However, you can share photos to your feed and reels to your reel tab separately.

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