The number one question I always get asked is: ‘who is taking all your Instagram pictures?’. Instagram is my most used and favorite social media app. It started out as an additional platform to share my blogposts but now it’s an important tool itself. I use it to share my daily adventures and for inspiration on fashion, travel and lifestyle. Whenever I fly to a destination for the first time I look up hashtags to find out where the local people hang out. When you work at the office, you usually work with the same people every day. But flight attendants work with a different crew every flight. Sometimes you run into a familiar face. Sometimes you don’t know anyone, nobody has any plans or there just isn’t a connection. For an Insta addict like yours truly it means I sometimes have to hustle for the gram. The majority of my pictures are taken by either colleagues or random strangers. The trick is to check if your potential photographer is carrying a fancy camera themself, ask couples or other Insta chicks. I never let strangers take a picture with my phone. If someone walks away with your camera, that sucks. But if they walk away with your phone, we have a bigger problem. I have to confess I hung out with someone once I actually didn’t really resonated with. But I needed a specific picture only someone else could take (oh I’m sure you’ve done it as well…right?). To keep it a little more real in this sometimes fake Insta world, the true stories behind some of my pictures. Enjoy!
In the gutter for the Gram.
Location matters and finding a suitable spot in very Insta-worthy L.A. is no problem at all. The idea behind this location was to create a ‘Rebel without a cause’ vibe at the L.A. river. Turned out the river was more like a sewer than anything else. Not very sanitary, there were all kinds of things floating by and I was so scared of slipping. After my buddy Maurits took a bunch of pictures it was time to call it quits. I never wore those red boots again by the way..
Instructions for the Gram.
How it’s done. Like I wrote before, I usually don’t hand over my phone but luckily I knew Anke who visited New York together with my friend Gemma. Anke was making a kind of behind the scenes video while Gemma was taking my pictures. Wish I always had a team like that! Just giving some last instructions and project New Yorkie could kick off!
Multitasking for the Gram
Back in L.A. The first stop after landing is of course In ‘n Out burger. For some reason In ‘n out pictures have a high ranking on Insta. As I was riding solo during that trip I had to find the right candidate (or victim) to take my picture. I didn’t see anyone right away so I decided to ask one of the staff. It was no problem at all but she stood there to take a photo. I didn’t like the angle so I asked her to sit right in front of me. The first shot was the best one (directions people, directions) and yes I did eat that burger.
When I almost got arrested for the gram.
Usually I do more research before heading towards a new destination. But I didn’t know more about Minneapolis other then the biggest mall of America was situated there. Did some research while there and I got a few tips from my co-workers and my local Insta stories viewers. One of the tips was to go to the (at that moment) frozen waterfall Minnehaha. The trick was to walk behind the waterfall and thus take the most amazing shot from the other side #goals. Even though the park was officially closed for visitors, nobody really obeyed the rules. I was kind of shadowing these two girls which were also on their way behind the waterfall. Although slippery the walk down was ok-ish. But going up to the waterfall was trickier. One of the girls slipped and came tumbling down so rapidly and I just had to step aside. Otherwise we would both plunge into the ravine. That was my cue to abort this mission and change my Insta plans. I went back down but before I could even ask anyone the local park police arrived. They ordered us the leave the valley immediately. I decided to take the high road and took a picture from above in stead.. like a good girl. ?
All by myself with the Gram.
Pictures with a self timer are my least favorite pictures to take. The energy is usually very off and the pictures often end up out of focus. But sometimes it’s the only option like when I was in Chicago the other day. I found this little cove I could place my camera in. After some awkward moments (posing like you’re not posing is quite difficult) I got the shot.
Attitude for the Gram.
You know when you want to take a picture at a super crowded touristic spot? All of a sudden it’s like you’re surrounded by 1 bilion people? I was in Rome and wanted a photo in front of the Colosseum (just like the rest of the world). This dude kept standing in my shot. When I asked him (already getting a bit annoyed) to move he thought he was being funny by staying in the shot. Hey, if you can’t beat them…
Missing the bus for the Gram
I spotted this cute Burberry backdrop in Seoul and of course I couldn’t resist. In Seoul everybody is always very busy so I didn’t immediately see any potential photographers. When I suddenly noticed a girl which apparently wasn’t very occupied. I asked her for a favor and she took a bunch of shots! (Love that, need options). She was really going for it, flash, no flash, different angles when all of a sudden she realized the bus she was waiting for, left without her. I felt so bad!
Hurt for the Gram.
Somebody call 911! Probably the most dramatic story behind the Insta picture ever. Ever since I found out about this idillic private beach Playa Hunku at Curaçao, I was obsessed. I needed this to be in my feed really bad. However, getting there was a little harder than I thought. Often used as a wedding location or magazine shoot, either way, we were going to need to make an appointment. Just my luck as my dear colleague Nadi I was hanging out with, had good connections on the island and was able to pull some strings. The only struggle we had was the darn fence. We couldn’t lock it properly and because Nadi’s long curls were blocking my view I told her to get her hair out of the way. In stead of gently placing her hair behind her ear she violently swept her head to the side and head budded the fence. Blood started to gush out of her eyebrow and she needed stitches asap. Our day at the private beach ended on the other side of the island at first aid. Everything for the gram..?
What’s the worst or craziest thing you have done for the gram?