An Instagram couple who were criticised for their dangerous viral photo have spoken out, denying they would do anything to put their lives in danger.
Kelly Castille and Kody Workman are an American couple who have a joint Instagram account called Positravelty, which has over 176,000 followers.
According to travel company Acanela Expeditions, Castille and Workman quit their jobs and met each other travelling.
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Now the couple are “professional world travellers, photographers, and models” and have travelled to over 31 countries.
On August 29, the couple posted a risky photo at Laguna Humantay, where Workman is holding Castille by the arm, while she precariously dangles one leg off a cliff.
“We urge you to take a chance, to push past barriers of negativity and oppression of self fulfilment and paint the picture of who YOU want to be,” they wrote in the caption.
“There is a difference between risking your life and taking a risk at having one. We know which side we would rather be on, do you?”
The photo received over 15,000 likes and a lot of criticism.
“Which came first, the narcissism, or the stupidity?” One person asked in the comments.
“You're just irresponsible beyond words encouraging other dumb attention seeking millennials to risk their lives for worthless validation in the form of idiotic social media likes.”
“The problem is that pictures like these inspire people to do dangerous things. Quite a few people die every year from trying to get a great picture to post,” another person said.
“Andddd the 2020 Darwin Award goes to..” someone said, referring to the tongue-in-cheek awards unofficially handed out to people who die in stupid circumstances.
Talking to CNN, the Instagram couple brushed off the criticism.
“We trust each other, and we would never do something that would put our lives at risk,” they told CNN.
“Perspective shots like these simply avoid certain surrounding elements. As for this specific shot, it is the framing that creates the dramatic perspective.”
The couple said they believed everyone is responsible for their own decisions, so their “platform of self expression (Instagram) will remain the same”.
“We will never live any moment of our lives concerned that someone, somewhere, 'might' one day copy us,” they told CNN.
The couples latest Instagram photo also features a risky stunt. Workman appears to be sitting on an edge of a balcony, Castille is on the other side of the railing, hanging on to her partner.
The couple appears to be high up, however the couple may just be playing with “framing that creates the dramatic perspective”.
The couple told CNN they thought after a photo they shared in Bali earlier this year where Castille is holding onto her boyfriend, while she dangles over a pool which appears to have a huge drop, that people would appreciate their photographic style.
“Following the Bali post we figured our love for perspective shots would be understood,” Castille and Workman said.