DC's Most Influential Instagram Stars & the Local Hot Spots They Love

By Amy Moeller | November 21, 2016 | Culture Feature

This year, discover the spirit of the city by checking out our most fabulous—and most followed—social media stars.



Holly Garner is the brains behind the DC Instagrammers’ meetup hub IGDC.com, but it’s her personal account that reflects her insight into the city she loves. “I like beautiful spaces, architectural details,” she notes. “It still remains a labor of love for me, and it’s whatever inspires me.” Her account has been featured twice on Instagram’s suggested users list, and her feed, which she calls her “daily journal,” has more than 75,000 followers.

Her inspiration: “The IGDC community and my photographer friends.”
Getting started: “It was an organic evolution—a social evolution. It’s about personalities, learning about people, and word of mouth.”
The key to Instagram success: “Post only what you love.”
Memorable moment: “Being invited by the White House to cover the Pope’s visit to Washington on social.”
Favorite DC spot: “The stretch of Rock Creek Park between Boulder Bridge and Military Avenue.”
Favorite mural: “The D.C. mural in Georgetown. It was created to protest an anti-mural law passed about 15 years ago, and I love that it has endured.”
A place to take out-of-town guests: “Blind Whino. It’s so unexpected and brilliant to experience.”



Justin Schuble is a Georgetown University business student with a passion for food and an eye for design. His Instagram account has captured the attention of more than 100,000 followers who make and break reservations based on his posts. “It’s amazing how the littlest thing can affect how I approach my work moving forward,” Schuble says. “When I look back at my old photographs, it’s crazy to see how much my style has changed. I attribute that to the talented people who have inspired me over the years.”

Memorable moment: “Hitting 100k followers.”
Best comments: “People often tag their friends in the comments and say, ‘Add it to the list.’ It’s really exciting to see that people are not only enjoying my photos but actually making plans to try the food I’m posting.”
Biggest challenge: “Being online all the time. It’s such an honor being able to share my life and my food adventures with hundreds of thousands of people, but there are days I wish I could leave my phone at home.”
Most photogenic meals: “China Chilcano.” Most memorable meal: “Little Serow. The range of heat and flavors kept me on my toes throughout the entire meal.”
If he only had 20 minutes in the city, he would… “Walk along the Georgetown Waterfront.”
Date night: “Rose’s Luxury.”
Weekend brunch: “Le Diplomate, Blue Duck Tavern, Birch & Barley. There is something about brunch in DC on a beautiful Sunday afternoon that makes me happy—but that might just be the mimosas and French toast talking. I can’t turn down an opportunity to get awesome #dcfoodporn shots when natural light and runny yolks are involved.”



One of DC’s most beloved fashionistas, Holly Pan quit her job as a business analyst to become a full-time fashion blogger in 2013. Her unique sense of style has garnered nearly 70,000 followers on Instagram, where she blends global influence with a hyper-local vibe. “This city is very open-minded and tolerant, because it has residents from all over the world,” she says. “There are no fashion rules in DC.”

Favorite outfit: “That’s like asking for your favorite child! A No. 21 dress I wore recently during New York Fashion Week was photographed and featured on both New York Times fashion and Harpersbazaar.com.”
Insta-inspo: “Runway looks, magazine editorials, and fellow bloggers.”
Memorable moment: “The first time my picture was re-grammed by a style-inspiration account, @coffeenclothes.”
The key to Instagram success: “Creativity, a signature style that speaks to the masses, consistency, and discipline.”
Toughest part of the gig: “Managing priorities. Being a blogger is very much like being a small business owner—you could find yourself working around the clock.”
Who she’s following right now:@fashionedchicstyling, @thatsotee, @christie_ferrari, @woahstyledotcom, and @cnylorac.”
A photogenic DC corner: “I Street by CityCenterDC.” Best people watching: “Embassy parties.”
Shopping: “Online, Net-a-Porter. Locally, Saks Chevy Chase.” Date night: “Kennedy Center. The performances always give me good energy and make me [feel] extra special.”
Surprising find: “I spotted a tourist carrying a large hot-pink Hermès Kelly bag—I didn’t scream, either.”



Jarrett Hendrix is the photographer behind the hashtag #PlacesThatDoNotExist. A lifelong Washingtonian, Hendrix’s love of photography pre-dates Instagram, stretching back to his high-school days when he’d photograph football games from the sidelines with a disposable camera. As a “huge fan of surreal photography,” Hendrix says that #PlacesThatDoNotExist is the result of art meeting photography. “I often find myself in situations where what is in my mind does not exist in the world today, and [I] create it using [my] imagination,” he says. He includes quotes and captions to give his 42,000-plus followers “a little push” into the story he wants to tell. “I believe that every photograph should mean something, and every photograph should tell a story,” he explains. But he also keeps it real: Most of the images are posted in real time, in an effort to maintain a feed that’s genuine and honest.

Favorite photo he’s taken: “A black and white photo of a gentleman on a bicycle with a bullhorn during a Black Lives Matter protest in Gallery Place a few years ago.”
Memorable moment: “[Touring] the National Museum of African American History and Culture before it opened to the public.”
Biggest challenge: “DC is not very large, so you have to really search for new spots to shoot.”
Who he’s following right now:@phil.martin, @kat_in_nyc, @danielkordan, @arpixa, and @vuhlandes.”
Most photogenic ’hood: “Capitol Hill.” Most inspiring city scene: “I love the bridge by L’Enfant Plaza that overlooks 395. It’s a great spot for a cool long exposure.”
His corner of the city: “I’m from the Benning Road, East Capitol Street area of DC—East of the River. That’s where my roots are, and it is my favorite part of the city.”
If he only had 20 minutes in DC, he would… “Photograph tourists downtown. I am a street photographer at heart, and capturing people in public is one of my favorite things to do.”

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