A new way to tell stories on Steller

March 24, 2014 |  Category:   life


Sometimes ideas incubate faster than the present technology allows. Videos and full page bleed images on the web come to mind. When I discovered the Steller App last week, I think I squealed. Now, you all know I am not the squealing type (usually), but I’ve been wracking my head trying to figure out the best format to use for a little side project that I’ve been wanting to explore. It involves video, so when I saw that Steller combines video, words and images together in a beautiful storytelling format I literally squealed, I’ll admit it.


So, I can’t help but question whether this is perhaps another nail on the coffin of blogging as we know it. I’m guessing blogging will be around for awhile, but there are so many other ways to share content now and interact with people (probably the biggest cause in the drop in comments on blogs). After a little cooling period, I’m back in love with instagram again. A few months ago I did pull back on all social media, particularly twitter and it felt good, but as a small business owner it’s near impossible to drop out completely. You have to play the game.
But this storytelling app? It seems made for the kind of stories I want to tell. I spent the weekend ignoring everything on my to-do list and made 2 stories instead. There was a bit of a learning curve, but it’s fairly simple to use. The only frustrating thing was that I couldn’t control the type as much as I wanted, but I understand why there are limitations and this is just the annoying designer in me talking. Some of the stories won’t be new if you’ve been reading here awhile as I plan on translating a few posts into storytelling format, but I have some new stories to tell as well. It’s amazing what a little app can do to reinvigorate things, isn’t it?
Story 1 and Story 2 can be seen here, but it’s best viewed on the iphone or ipad.

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  • Lakshmi March 24, 2014 at 1:11 pm

    Oh, don’t stop weaving your stories here on SFD. Was combing through your archives like a crazy person last Friday… :)

    The stories are lovely! I viewed them on a regular laptop but I’ll check them out on an iPad too.

    • Jenna March 24, 2014 at 1:20 pm

      Oh, I don’t think I will stop blogging, but I have been spending less time doing so, like many. Yes, look at stories on the ipad – its the only way to see video and people are really starting to become creative with it!

  • Court March 24, 2014 at 2:34 pm

    I’m so excited to see that you are on Stellar! I am so excited about the app, but have been wishing that more people would join. I have to imagine I am just going to like it more and more as more people join. I’m off to follow you and your lovely stories :)

    • Jenna March 24, 2014 at 4:16 pm

      Found you on there!

  • sylvï March 24, 2014 at 2:47 pm

    oh, that app seems fantastic! too bad it’s not for android, i just got my first smartphone last week and have been looking for useful apps to stuff it with. surprisingly i’ve been drawing a blank. i did join instagram, though, but it’s no good for the rambling i’m prone to accompany my photos with…
    really liked what you’re doing with the stories, and the format feels really fresh, like a little booklet with a bit of oomph.

    • Jenna March 24, 2014 at 4:14 pm

      I’m sure it will be a matter of time before it comes out for android…

  • linda March 24, 2014 at 2:52 pm

    i’ve seen a few of these in my spare time, yours included. i love the idea and this app i’m sure will be the next big thing before you know it.

    i personally have a love/hate relationship with technology and social media though. i love it because it’s always fun to discover and learn new things, especially when everyone is first getting on board. and i love that it’s basically free advertising for shops and businesses. i hate it because the loyalty in me hates seeing all the work i put into an old social media platform become obsolete. okay, maybe not obsolete but like you said, not much traffic or interaction. i feel that’s how twitter has become for me. it’s the nature of things i’m sure.

    ha, it’s like having to restart a movie collection when a new, faster, small, better quality format comes out.

    • Jenna March 24, 2014 at 4:21 pm

      Oh, I hear you Linda. There’s just too much out there, and then this pressure as a business to interact with all on every social media avenue. I can’t keep track, especially now that we are getting messages and questions about the business through instagram, as well as FB and twitter. I guess the key is to stick to the things that resonate and hold your interest. Twitter doesn’t interest me much anymore like it used to. I hated Vine, but felt compelled to jump on that bandwagon when everyone suddenly stated posting little videos. Pinterest doesn’t interest me at all, but I can’t ignore the value of it. I guess that’s why it surprised me how much of a reaction I got from this app – I usually don’t get too excited about new social media outlets. I like your analogy on the movie collection. I actually found some VHS tapes in a box the other day, haha.

  • Theresa March 24, 2014 at 3:29 pm

    Amazing! Thanks so much for sharing. I’ve never heard of Stellar. But, it sounds perfect being that I too love story telling (reading & writing) and to be able to combine that with video and photography… !! Yes!!

    I stepped back from blogging last summer. And, I’ll admit Instagram has taken over my daily blog roll but there are still a few out there that offer more than just pretty pictures. And so I constantly find myself returning to SFD. Look forward to seeing more of you on Stellar.

    • Jenna March 25, 2014 at 6:17 pm

      Thank you for checking in on the blog, Theresa. And have fun with the app!

  • Kumi March 25, 2014 at 3:36 am

    There are beautiful! Your pictures are wonderful even in a big size but love this conduced feeling… like you are pulled in a book while reading. Thank you for sharing – and keep us inspired!

    • Kumi March 25, 2014 at 3:39 am

      oops – speling – sorry
      conduced x
      condensed o

    • Jenna March 25, 2014 at 6:16 pm

      Thank you! the videos only work on the app version, so it’s worth taking a look at stories in the native format.

  • Hana March 25, 2014 at 10:39 am

    Hi Jenna – it’s funny, I was just thinking how much I miss going through my blogroll which is why I’m here now! Happy to see you’re still blogging, although I’ll be the first to admit I’ve got lots of love for Instagram. 😉 Hope all is well with you and your business!

    • Jenna March 25, 2014 at 6:16 pm

      Thanks Hana. Nice to see a comment from you!

  • Rachel March 25, 2014 at 11:12 am

    Well crap, this is another app I have to have…le sigh, technology. It’s so pretty!

    • Jenna March 25, 2014 at 6:17 pm

      I know. I just want to make stories, deadlines be damned!

  • Lulu March 25, 2014 at 11:15 am

    Blogs will always be my number one love. Thanks for the new app recommendation, will definitely check it out.

  • Juliet March 25, 2014 at 6:14 pm

    You really transport us with those photos and stories. I love them. They are so evocative and beautiful. Please keep writing and sharing them on SFD!

  • dolittledesign March 26, 2014 at 2:01 pm

    Oh, boy a new toy! I would like to try it myself. Integrating text and images into one is a great idea. It might just become my new journal.

  • Kate S. March 31, 2014 at 6:15 am

    Thank you for this. I am a teacher and this app is perfect for my kids to tell stories. I presented it at a staff meeting and everyone was so excited!

  • lesterhead April 5, 2014 at 8:45 am

    Thanks for tipping me off to Steller. Can’t stop playing with it!