Behind the InstaMeet: @boylagi, Jakarta
In this series, we hear from the Instagrammers organizing InstaMeets in different parts of the world. To view more photos and videos from the InstaMeet in Kenawa Island, browse the #explorelombok2023 hashtag and follow @boylagi on Instagram.
For Jakarta Instagrammer Boy Hardy (@boylagi), Instagram is not only a place to share his creativity, but also a channel to develop new friendships and explore his home country of Indonesia. Over the past two years, Boy has organized more than 20 InstaMeets across Indonesia, ranging from small groups of five people to large-scale meets with more than 50 people. One of the most memorable InstaMeets for Boy is #explorelombok2023, a meetup he organized with Instagram friends from different cities at a tiny resort destination called Kenawa Island.
Boy’s inspiration always comes from meeting people, especially those he has never met before in person. “We always like, comment and joke around on Instagram, and I thought why don’t we go outside and meet up—it would be fun to get to know these cool friends in real life,” he says.
The Kenawa Island meetup grew out of a conversation with some visiting Instagrammers he was hosting. The casual idea soon became reality: “I called my Instagram friends in Lombok and asked them to join and also help us with logistics. There also was one new friend, a traveller, who joined the trip,” he explains.
Boy says it took two months to organize the trip to Kenawa Island, but for this and other InstaMeets, he has a few simple tips for organizing an InstaMeet:
- Spread the word about your InstaMeet: “I usually tell my friends one by one or through group chats on messaging apps. I don’t always announce the InstaMeet to everybody and will decide who to inform depending on the size I want.”
- Look for great locations: “The most important thing is ‘safety first.’ There are so many awesome places to explore, but it’s generally easier if someone in the group is familiar with the location (or locations—it doesn’t have to be just one spot).”
- Have confidence in the attendance: “Don’t be afraid no one will come to your InstaMeet. Even if it’s a small group, they will join.”
Boy considers the past InstaMeets to be some of the most influential moments for him. “I’ve met so many new friends, and we’ve become a big family of Instagrammers in Indonesia. ‘From strangers to friends, from friends to family’—that’s what happens every time, but there still is something new in every InstaMeet.”