Every millennial uses Instagram, we all, even secretly, wish we could be an Instagram influencer. According to Pixlee, an Instagram influencer is someone who "have an established credibility and audience; who can persuade others by virtue of their trustworthiness and authenticity. Your brand’s influencers are users that employ your brand hashtag who have the largest number of followers."
At one point in time I wanted to be an influencer SO BAD. I would collab with local photographers and go on photo shoots on almost a weekly basis.
I don't go on photo shoots anymore with new photographers, only established ones I have previously worked with.
Any beauty guru, model, YouTuber, can be put into the influencer category. My personal favorite guru to follow is Soothingsista, Stephanie Villa.
I love Stephanie as an influencer because she has a style that I feel actually matches with mine. Most influencers look a lot like Kylie Jenner, which is totally fine, but not a look I personally align with! Stephanie has tattoos, a unique sense of style, and a signature makeup look.
This isn't a story about Stephanie Villa though; this is a story about Lil Miquela.
Lil Miquela is an Instagram influencer that is one of the biggest mysteries of the app. Is Lil Miquela a real human being, or a computer generated image? Looking at Lil Miquela, there is NO WAY she could be a real human being. The reasoning this question arises, is becasue the account is run like there is no reason question that Miquela is real.
Her captions talk about being a model, like in this one where she says she booked her first magazine cover.
She even posts pictures with other people.
Something about each of her images though, is just a little bit... off.
It's like in current video games, they ALMOST look like real human beings. Take this trailer for Uncharted 4: A Thief's End, for example. Gorgeous, and extremely life like, but still just a little weird, obviously CGI.
I get the same feeling looking a Lil Miquela as when I play video games like Uncharted 4, Resident Evil 7, and when I watch this trailer for Call of Cthulhu.
Lil Miquela has since released music, very very auto tuned, but music none the less.
Some theories around Lil Miquela being real are just simply, Instagram filters. As a Instagram QUEEN, I have never had one of the filters do that to my appearance. Some have retorted back to that fact saying she's using some out of app software like Facetune or VSCO and including being flawless at makeup.
Personally I use VSCO and Snapseed to edit my photo's, and still I have never even gotten CLOSE to that fake CGI look, even when I have tried to achieve it.
CGI pop stars aren't too far out of the question though. Back in 2011, Japan had a brand new pop star, Aimi Eguchi, who was revealed to be CGI.
Another one of the biggest pop stars in Japan right now is Hatsune Miku, also CGI. She is obviously an anime character, and performs at all of her concerts with a holographic image.
The biggest theory about Lil Miquela, is that she is based off of a real girl. Some theorists have attributed Nicole Ruggiero to creating Lil Miquela. The reasoning being that Ruggiero has similar qualities to Miquela. Ruggiero is also a 3D Artist and Motion Designer, and her art style matches up with the way Miquela looks.
The biggest theory as to why Lil Miquela was created is to show the blurred lines between real life and social media. Everyone on social media wants to make others believe that they lead this perfect blemish free life. This led to the formation of Lil Miquela, a girl that is literally flawless and leading this life in Los Angeles that any millennial girl could envy. There are so many jokes of people doing things just for Instagram; "do it for the gram!" Even I have been known to do it, taken multiple pictures when I am out, so I can post it later while I am sitting at home in my yoga pants eating pizza, but wanting to pretend like my Friday night is spent out glamorously at bars in downtown.
She was created to make a social narrative about how we all look at these influencers on Instagram, wishing we could lead the same lives they lead. While trying to be these girls isn't possible, literally, the girl you follow doesn't even exist.
What do you think of Lil Miquela? Is she just a social narrative or something more?