It was in summer 2011 that Michaela Kruse aka @lailie posted a car photography on her Instagram account for the very first time – a green Figaro by Nissan. This was the beginning of her own photo collection of beautiful old cars that she tagged with #lailiescars. What used to be a personal gallery for Michaela is now a well-known hashtag amongst Instagrammers. We had a chat with the photographer herself about cars, London and architecture.

Why did you choose cars?

Ever since she was a little kid, cars were playing a important role in Michaelas life. Her dad was working in the automobile industry and he taught his daughter alot about cars, different brands and their models. Due to his job, the father regularly got a new car, Michaelas favourite was an old English car and she loved to squash herself into the back of it. Until today, the photographer from Cologne is a big fan of cars and she can easily recognize most car models on the streets.

When Michaela spots a beautiful car, very often her heart skips a beat. Same for extraordinay beautiful architecture by the way. The Instagrammer loves bright colours and so it happens that one of her most shot motifs is the VW beetle. Her favourite combination is a pretty old car in front of an old building gifted with a sense of beauty, preferably in London where she spent some time during both her childhood and during her studies.


How did #lailiescars came into being?

@lailie is a nickname that Michaela created when she signed up for Second Life. Although she didn’t like the online game at all, she kept the name. Initially she tagged her car photos with #lailiescars in order to build up a little gallery for herself. Over 100 photos can be found under the hashtag feed now, the Instagrammer captured cars everywhere she went.

Ihr Blick auf die Welt?

The world how Michaela sees it?

Michaela doesn’t love cars only but also architecture such as museums in winter and other esthetic buildings. The photographer spots her motifs quite randomly, she never purposely hunts for new shots. If she happens to notice a beautiful sight, she tries to remember the spot and returns to it with her camera. Michaela has always been shooting cars, even before she joined Instagram. She now says that photography has changed her view and how she perceives details in her (urban) surroundings. Instagram is her inspirational source, she enjoys to scroll through other people’s streams, looking for motifs and new hashtags. She likes to see a big variety and is a fan of food photography although she doesn’t shoot any herself.

Instagrammers from Cologne know who @lailie is and many of them know her in person. She is well connected and knows a lot of local IGers in Cologne and other parts of the world. Plus, Michaela is a co-founder of @koelnergram. In the end of January, she is heading back to her second home London and we are looking forward to her new photos!