Northern Ireland TikTok star Sophy Grier goes around the world from her car parked in Carrick

You might not recognise it, but this car is turning into one of Northern Ireland's most famous - all due to the talents of its owner...

Sophy Grier, from Carrickfergus, has gained more than half a million followers on TikTok thanks to the quirky videos she makes from the front seat of her trusty car.

The 25-year-old performing arts teacher, who also stars as part of ABBA tribute band Bjorn Identity, is fast-approaching 10 million 'likes' on the app as she sings and dances her way to internet fame.

Sophy said: "The car is not fancy, it's not big but it's all you need. You get in the car and you can't really tell what it looks like in the videos...

"I kind of ignored TikTok for quite a while, I teach performing arts and all the kids would say 'You should get TikTok', and I was like 'No, it's a kids app I'm not doing that', I very much ignored it.

"But then lockdown happened, I got quite bored and at some point I decided to download it and have a wee go.

Sophy is from Carrick and is being watched around the world

"I then just started making videos and people responded well to them, which I really didn't expect.

"It just kind of went from there, I made more and more videos and they got more and more attention and I didn't expect any of it but I just enjoyed that other people enjoyed watching what I did.

"It was a really nice way to connect with other people and just spread some happiness.

"It's not what I expected at all but it's been a really fun and rewarding journey."

Some of Sophy's videos have had more than nine million views.

She admitted: "Those numbers don't even compute. I remember the first time I got 1,000 likes on a video and I was so excited and the numbers just grew and they grew."

And her reach is truly global...

Sophy is closing in on 10 million 'likes' on TikTok

Sophy said: "You get messages from people in Brazil or in Luxembourg - it's crazy to think people all around the world are watching me sitting somewhere like Carrickfergus in my car, making a wee random video."

But why did Sophy choose her car as the place to film?

She explained: "I'm always kind of on-the-go so I would get into the car and have an idea and be like, right, I'll film this.

"It was never like a decision to make all my videos in the car but then the car just kind of became a space as well where my head was clear and it was just me and I could think or be creative."

Sophy started her account back in 2020, when the world was in the midst of the Coronavirus pandemic.

She said: "During lockdown everybody needed a reason to smile every so often and even now, I think people still need a reason to smile.

"But it's not that it was specific to lockdown... people open the app and they're just scrolling and they're looking for something to make them laugh, to make them smile, those are the videos I want to watch.

Sophy has enjoyed huge success online with her videos shot from the front seat of her car

"So it's always really nice to see a comment from someone saying 'you made me laugh' or 'your videos always make my day' or things like that."

With such a huge global reach, Sophy's account has been targeted by trolls.

She added: "As it grows you do then open yourself to a wider audience and not all of that audience are going to want to see you.

"That was a strange thing when it was growing and people were sending hate comments and you're kind of asking 'where did this come from?'

"The first time you start scrolling through your feed and you see lots of comments about how much people hate you or 'I didn't want to see this on my page today' or 'she annoys me' or 'her voice is the worst'...

"The first time you see them it is quite alot and it can affect you but learning to deal with it and learning to understand it's a person behind a screen who doesn't mean all that much then you're able to put it to the side.

"You really do have to learn to have a bit of a thick skin and not let the small percentage of people that want to bring you down, bring you down."

Sophie said she loves TikTok and the audience it offers but it doesn't quite compare to performing live as part of Bjorn Identity.

She admitted: "To be in front of a live audience and have that reaction and actually get to see the joy on people's faces and interact with them is the best feeling."

Sophie plans to keep jumping in the car and creating the content that is making people smile.

She explained: "I'll do it as long as it makes me happy and then if it makes other people happy then that's great..."

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