Shawn Mendes, 23, is paying tribute to the album that put him on the map! The Canadian born singer recreated the cover of his Illuminate album, which was released back on September 23, 2016 when he was just 18. In the new image, Shawn sat in the exact same way, but looked buffer and bolder as he gave the camera a smoldering look in the pic while holding his guitar.
“back in time,” Shawn captioned the image on his Instagram account, keeping things short and sweet. While the picture looked identical, there were some small differences — namely his outfit. Camila Cabello‘s ex-boyfriend swapped out his vintage dyed bomber jacket for a charcoal long sleeve, also upgrading his skinny jeans to a dark cropped straight cut. The singer had a different guitar, too, this time holding one with blue details.
While the Ontario native had already had success with his first album Handwritten a year prior and single “Life Of The Party” in 2014, his biggest single to date at the time came off of Illuminate: “Treat You Better,” which peaked at number six on the US Billboard Hot 100. The tune also charted high internationally, hitting the Top 10 in Canada, the UK and 18 other countries. Shawn wrote the track himself alongside Teddy Geiger and Scott Harris, and went on to win a Radio Disney Music Award for Song of the Year.
The new Instagram post garnered over 1.6 million likes from his 69.2 million followers. “we love the illuminate era,” one fan wrote while another remarked about how much time had passed. “How was Illuminate six years ago???” they posted. “u have grown soooo much,” a third added to the post.
Shawn didn’t actually go to the original location for the shoot, but rather posed in front of a recreation that’s part of his ShawnAccess experience for his current tour in support of 2020’s Wonder. The singer snapped the pic in Seattle at the Climate Pledge Arena on June 28, 2022.