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Instax in the Moment: Talking sneakers with Evan Saunders
Not only is Evan Saunders an official Instax Blogger but he’s also a massive sneakerhead and editor of Sneaker Fortress. He takes us through his favourite favourites, how got started and the Instax he loves the most.
We’re excited to hear about your sneaker collection! When did it start, how many pairs do you have, tell us more.
I can’t tell when I started my collection, it happened quite naturally. I recall buying two pairs of sneakers on sale in 2016 and ever since, I was on the lookout for such deals. Then getting into the sneaker news and reviews segment (check out Sneaker Fortress), only increased things from there. My collection has reached about 100 sneakers, even though I have donated a few over the last few years.
Do you have a favourite pair of sneakers?
As a daily driver, I don’t have a favourite – I have a set of about 4-5 that I wear during the course of a week. This includes my Nike Space Monkey, adidas Forum Exhibit, PUMA Future Rider and PUMA RS-X. There are a few I’d like to add back into rotation, but they’re in need of a clean, which reminds me…
What’s your grail pair – why?
I have a few collectors’ / collaboration sneakers that are just for my collection. This includes my Asics x Coca-Cola (to add to my growing collection of Coca-Cola collection pieces, including boards, bottles, 90s yo-yo, hoodies, etc.), adidas x Marvel X-Men Predator football boots, adidas x James Bond Ultraboost 20 and PUMA Suede Batman.
However, I think my most prized sneaker from these is the adidas x Street Fighter Dhalsim pair. This wasn’t available in SA, so had to make special arrangements to get it into the country (not to mention the customs fees). I bought my wife the Chun-Li pair to match, as she’s also become a collector – not good to have two in the family.
If you can only choose one pair to wear the rest of your life, which would it be?
Easily my adidas NMD_R1 Triple White Japan Pack. This is a classic all-white sneaker that goes with any outfit and is also super comfortable. These have been my go-to for years. The only issue is trying to keep them clean for an extended period of time.
How do you ensure your sneakers are protected when not being worn?
I use a sneaker protection spray whenever I receive a new pair, apart from the running shoes. Additionally, I pack every sneaker back into its own box with its tissue paper to make sure it keeps its new smell for long, too. This also helps me know exactly where every sneaker is and select one for the day.
Tell us more about how you use Instax in your life?
I really didn’t expect Instax to be so integrated into almost every activity and larger gathering of family or friends. The first time I used Instax, I was hooked. As soon as I could, I bought my first Instax Mini 9. The only thing that bugged me at the time was making overly sure of snapping the right shot to get a good print.
However, when the Instax mini Evo launched, it was a game-changer. I loved the Square SQ20 before it, but the Evo just took my hobby to a new level. The unit is with me whenever I meet with a few friends or go visit family. Everyone loves it, and it helps so much in capturing and sharing those moments on the day.
Having something in hand after the day’s events is so much different than having a digital copy in your phone’s gallery. Further to this, I sourced three Instax cameras for my wedding day, which formed part of the favours for guests. At the start of the reception, people were a bit tentative to get going, but once we gave the go-ahead for the youngsters to snap and print as they pleased, everyone started to join in and see the value. With over 200 prints made on the day, everyone had something to take with them at the end of the day as a memory from our wedding.
Do you have a favourite Instax to use?
The Mini Evo. No question. I love the wider prints of the Link Wide printer, but for flexibility and ease of use, it’s the Mini Evo all day.
What’s your favourite Instax frame size – mini, wide or square?
In terms of size, it would be the Wide. It looks a lot better on the fridge when we stick up a new memory. However, the Mini has its merits on costing and being able to share more with friends and family at events.
I have so many future ideas on how to use the Instax prints in the future. The only issue is making the time and moving into our new place to get some work started later in the year to better display our photos. With a collection of over 1200 prints, it’ll need to be managed better. I’ve got an album for our wedding snaps, a few frames and a few fridge magnets. However, this caters for less than 10% of the images so far.