Instagram has been an outlet for aspiring professional photographers since it’s creation. Many Lake Shore students have Instagram accounts, but few use it to the extent that Lloyd Miller, Senior, and Ryan Grenadier, Junior, have. Wielding bloated follower counts, these students have climbed from simple phone photography to professional quality and internet fame.
Being a self-proclaimed entrepreneur, Grenadier started “fishing_fantasy” earlier last year. He got the idea to create a community platform for fishermen to share their big catches. Grenadier has been fishing in Lake St. Clair since his childhood, simply stating, “It’s something I like to do.” The student claims “I get somewhere between 100-160 followers a day” which explains his 25.5 thousand followers. After this display of dedication, fishing companies started to contact Grenadier for sponsorship deals and advertising. “Some people offer money just to show off what they caught, but mostly it’s sponsorships,” he explains. Grenadier estimates he’s accumulated “something like $600 in cash and products” over the last year. It doesn’t stop there though, as the student continues to collect payments monthly for his exposure.
Lloyd Miller is a friend of Grenadier and admires his entrepreneur spirit. Last year, Miller was using Instagram the normal way: showing off new possessions, selfies, and food. This was the case until summer came around and he took a picture at the boardwalk at Metro Park. “I remember I had to run to get that picture because the sun was going down,” Miller states chuckling. This beautiful moment of nature inspired him to start photography as a hobby. “After that, I bought my first professional camera and took more pictures of nature.,” he states. This practice continued for a while; Miller would take photos of interesting things from interesting places and post them on his Instagram.
On February 21st, however, Lloyd thought long and hard about his future relationship with photography. If you went to the “Lmiller76” Instagram account after school that day, you would be greeted by the giant zero above the word “posts”. Miller methodically deleted every picture he ever uploaded for the world that day. Lloyd’s fans felt the magnitude of this; Ethan Goodwell, senior, claimed “I thought it was interesting seeing all the different pictures he would always post and now that’s over”. Miller was barraged with panicked questioning, but he remained calm and told everyone not to worry. Miller commented on his actions saying, “I did photography so much I forgot why I liked it”. “I’m not gonna post for a while… to remember why I love photography in the first place,” says Miller reassuringly. He is planning to get a brand new camera, a Sony A7R2, before he continues his Instagram career. Planning further ahead, Miller has taken the exam to join The Marines and looks to get a job in photography. Joe Verloove, senior, gives his full support of the decision, saying “it takes a lot of courage”.