13 Regular People Behind Some Of The Most Famous Memes On The Planet

Here’s 13 faces behind famous memes that you’re probably pretty familiar with, I mean seriously they’re everywhere.

Just log onto your Facebook and your bound to see one of these pop up…. they’re internet celebrities.

Anyways, you’ve probably wondered at one time or another, ‘who are these people’, and ‘what do they actually look like without the standard background and text overlay’? Well look no further….

1. Good Guy Greg Meme

Good Guy Greg

Good Guy Greg, probably the most popular meme, got his start on 4chan and quickly became quite famous. He’s supposedly a commercial fisherman, but even that’s under dispute. You can see for yourself by checking out the Reddit thread.

2. First World Problems Girl Meme

popular memes

There are many variations of the meme “First World Problems” with different pictures being used as the main premise. But probably the most famous one of all is the one above. It was originally posted on BuzzFeed as just an image macro, before moving to meme generator…. and well the rest is history.

popular memes

The real person behind the meme is actually the beautiful Silvia Bottini, a model and actress from Varese, Italy. She has been in a few productions, most notably Romeo & Juliet as well as Alice in Wonderland. She has also done a few commercials. You can check out her website here.

Optimized-Screenshot 2015-02-01 at 2.56.31 PM

3. Overally Attached Girlfriend Meme

It started as a screen grab pulled from her video submission to a contest held by Justin Bieber who challenged fans to create a “Girlfriend” counterpart to his hit song “Boyfriend”. The video was a parody rendition of Bieber’s song with personalized lyrics. The meme stared on Reddit and spread like crazy.

The identity behind the video and meme is Laina Walker, and she currently makes funny YouTube videos. You can check out her channel here and website here.

Laina Walker

4. Scumbag Steve Meme

His real name is Blake Boston and the original photo was taken by his mom when he was 16. Blake is now a father and is currently pursuing his music career. You can check out his YouTube channel here.

Scumbag Steve

5. Hipster Barista Meme


His real name is Dustin Mattson, and he works at Octane Coffee down south in Atlanta. The meme started on Quickmeme and then spread to Reddit where it took off. Mattson at first wasn’t that pleased with the meme.

In an interview with, Mattson said, “I do find it discouraging and disappointing that there was so much exposure brought to an attempt at making a joke of a culinary industry and the professional barista. To me, it’s very telling on how we laud farm-to-table food, craft beer, cocktail mixology, but it’s ok to have no respect for the specialty coffee world and the people who are committed to it.”

6. Bad Luck Brian Meme

His real name is Kyle, and the original photo is from his 7th grade year book picture that his friend thought looked funny so he turned into a meme…. the rest is history. He now makes funny YouTube videos and also has his own Facebook page.

7. Success Kid Meme

The original image was taken by photographer Laney Griner of her then 11-month-old son Sammy on August 26th, 2007.  Laney Griner has continued to post photos of Sammy on her Flickr page through the years.

Many have been shared on Reddit, Blame it on The Voices and the Daily What. He’s also been used in a few commercials, most notably Vitamin Water back in 2012 in the U.S.


8. Ridiculously Photogenic Guy Meme

He’s 25-year-old Zeddie Little, who happened to be running a 10K marathon in Charleston, South Carolina when a photographer snapped a picture of him. From there it took off, and he even did an interview with GMA.



The original photo was submitted to the Australia Associated Press who was covering the Schoolies festival in Australia. On November 23rd, 2011, Redditor NorthernSkeptic submitted a post titled “Introducing Sudden Clarity Clarence” that included an image macro with the caption “Oh my God / dubstep sucks.” The rest is history.

10. College Freshman Meme

His name is Griffin Kiritsy and here’s a little background on how the meme all got started, via his personal blog:

“The story behind the picture is the worst part though. I did this interview over the phone and I thought that was the end of it, but a few weeks later the guy who set me up with the interview called and said a photographer was coming to take my picture.

“No big deal” I told this guy, “I can pose for a few snapshots.” Little did I know that the f*cking Picasso of photos was coming to frame me for this shot, and I ended up on Thompson Hall lawn in the middle of the day in the middle of the week. For those of you who aren’t UNH-ers, it’s like walking in the middle of Main Street during rush hour.

And I was there while he took 137,000 photos. Talk about committing social suicide as a first semester freshman. F*ck me.”

11. Successful Black Man Meme

The meme first started on 4chan pulled from a Shutterstock image and continued to spread from there. Apparently he graduated with a degree in electrical engineering and now lives in Texas working for General Electric.


The ‘Goosebumps’ girl’s real name is Maggie Goldenberger, a nurse now working the in Phoenix area. 11 years old at the time, Goldenberger and her friends were into playing dress-up… and a meme was born.

According to Vanity Fair, “Goldenberger put on the vest, hoisted her hair up into intentionally dorky pigtails, brandished the chosen books, and pulled an intentionally hideous face for the camera. Normally, she hardly ever wore her retainer like she was supposed to, but it felt right for the character: she put it on for the shoot.”


Like the majority of the memes do, it all stared on Reddit when user Jeff Davis shared the infamous photo of Goldenberger he found while publicly browsing a gallary of various peoples pictures on Facebook. You can read the entire Vanity Fair story here.

13. Skeptical Baby Meme


The photo you see below was taken at the Museum of Natural Sciences in Raleigh, North Carolina, by Jarod Knoten. The original photo below shows the father Dave with his son Mason. The photo was then submitted to Reddit where it spread like wildfire.


Pretty cool right!? Got something to add? Let us know in the comments below and give this a share before you go.

h/t: (thefw / First World Problems Blog)

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