December 11, 2014
For Mette Willert, instagrammer and content manager for the Danish railway company DSB, the city has changed since she discovered Instagram. The social media platform has made her see Copenhagen with new eyes. “There was a time before and a time after Instagram.”
I have lived in Copenhagen for more than 15 years, and I now feel more like a Copenhagener than a girl who grew up in the countryside.
For the past 7 years, I have lived in a quiet neighborhood in the eastern part of the city named Østerbro. Just like the rest of the city has undergone a major change in the past 15 years, so is my hood now slowly starting to change with the development of a new district called Nordhavn. It’s an old harbor area that is being converted to a whole new city district with new architecture rising alongside the old industrial silos and warehouses. Despite being very unfamiliar with the area for years, I now really appreciate the district after having joined the Instagram wave. I use my hood as a backdrop for my pictures and spend a lot of time walking and cycling around the area, using it as my visual playground.
The change, of when I began looking differently at my neighbourhood, happened on a freezing cold (minus 10 degrees!) January morning back in 2012 when I went on my first Instawalk with a group of local Copenhagen-based instagrammers in Nordhavn. We explored the old empty warehouses and took photos with our iPhones. It was so much fun talking to likeminded people, and that event changed everything for me. I started to share my pictures of Copenhagen on Instagram on a daily basis, respond to comments and started connecting with and befriend fellow instagrammers. The social network has given me so many great experiences, both in Copenhagen and abroad. It has made me explore the city in a completely new way. I have gotten up at 3 o’clock in the morning to meet with fellow instagrammers at Amager Strandpark to watch the sun go up over the sea. I have opened up doors, walked into private buildings and discovered the most amazing hidden places in town. I have seen the clouds drift by outside my windows only to run up to the rooftop on the 16th floor to capture the magic moment over the city and the harbor.
1366 picture posts later, my visual take on not only Copenhagen but also wherever I go, has changed a lot. I like to say that there was a time before and a time after Instagram.