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The Girl Who Poses With Books: An Epic Photo Journey

Elizabeth Sagan takes #Bookstagram photos to the next level.

Have you ever taken a selfie while reading a good book? (Or at least done so to get credit for reading said book? Don’t lie, we’ve all done it.) Well, Elizabeth Sagen—an elite member of Instagram’s Bookstagrammer community—has taken creative book photography to the next level. One might even say reading gives her wings…

Reading gives her wings

Image credit @elizabeth_sagan on Instagram

I spoke with her about her work and she said that it all started back in 2016 on Instagram as a way for her to share her love for reading. After discovering the “Bookstagram” community (people who share their readings on Instagram), she began posting regular photos of books she was reading. “The pics were simple at first,” she said. “Just the book covers, but last year I started to add myself in then and boom!”

“Boom” is right. A quick scroll back on her Instagram and you’ll see her transition quickly from a more basic style to a clear and distinct shift to pure book art.

It’s not like books grew on trees for her…

Image credit @elizabeth_sagan on Instagram

But that doesn’t stop her from making that happen. It’s not all fun and games though. When taking this picture under the tree, she unknowingly sat on an ant hill. She didn’t realize until shortly after when she felt “so many pinches” as she put it. Yep. Ants will do that to you. Stay safe, wannabe Bookstagrammers. You gotta be tough if you wanna make it in this industry!

She’s a well-rounded bookworm.

Image credit @elizabeth_sagan on Instagram

Between reading books and visiting her best friend James Trevino (another epic Bookstagrammer who can be found at @james_trevino on Instagram), she manages to keep quite the busy Instagram life. In fact, the astute observer will notice that many of her photos are similar to those on James’ Instagram. That’s because they take photos with each other for 5-6 hours a day for an entire week every month!

And the end result is more than worth it.

Image credit @elizabeth_sagan on Instagram

Elizabeth has clearly managed to pull herself from her reading slump. In fact, she regularly engages with fans on her Instagram profile regarding books she’s reading and books she’s wearing.

Lady Gaga has nothing on Elizabeth’s elaborate book gown.

Image credit @elizabeth_sagan on Instagram

Her book wizardry doesn’t stop at gowns either. She’s quite good at combining elements, and by that, I’m referring to fire and ice of course.

Hot or cold? Would it be too much to ask for both?

Image credit @elizabeth_sagan on Instagram

She uses her magical book powers to create fantastic beasts…

Image credit @elizabeth_sagan on Instagram

…and wage epic wars.

Image credit @elizabeth_sagan on Instagram

It’s no wonder her Instagram has blown up to over 66K followers at the time of this writing!

When it rains, it pours.

Though she often uses non-book props in her photos, she said this one didn’t really work out as well with a real umbrella—so she made one using books instead. That was definitely the right call!

Image credit @elizabeth_sagan on Instagram

Out of the 1,000 books Elizabeth owns, her favorite book series is The Dark Tower by Stephen King. Unable to name just one, she was quick to include The Passage by Justin Cronin and Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson as runner-ups.

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If you enjoyed these photos and want to see hundreds more just like them, be sure to follow @elizabeth_sagan on Instagram. Be sure to like her Facebook page too!

Just for fun, I asked her if she ever reads ebooks. She said she actually reads more ebooks than hard copies due to the fact that they are cheaper. She could have fooled me with all those pictures!

It’s a shame because “e-bookstagram” could have been BIG.

E-Bookstagram could have been BIG.

Just kidding. Please stick to real books and keep doing you, Elizabeth. You got this.

Image credit @elizabeth_sagan on Instagram

So, are you in a book slump of your own? What’s keeping you in it? Why not start small? Pick something you’ll enjoy and read even a few pages at a time. Who knows, maybe you’ll find that book that you can’t put down. And then, after surviving an unanticipated but much-overdue adventure that takes you to the ends of another world and back, maybe you’ll take a picture with that book and post it on Instagram. The #bookstagram community awaits you.


Written by Andrew Fischer

Andrew Fischer is the Head Writer and Editor-in-Chief of PopMalt. He is an avid follower of all things pop and Internet culture, and works as Creative Director at NURV, a boutique creative multimedia and digital marketing company. He is also the founder of The Jericho Joe.