What advice would you give to young people trying to break into the world of photography?
To immerse themselves completely in it. When I was a young teenager and realised photography was what I really wanted to do, I would spend all my time on sites like Flickr and Tumblr looking for inspiration and taking photos whenever I had the chance. All the money I made from my part time job, I spent on film and developing. Then when I got to college, I spent all the time I could in the darkrooms there. Trying to break into the world of photography is tough, but if you have a genuine passion for it, and it becomes all that you live and breathe, then that will carry you.
Why do you think the female gaze and working with other girls is so important?
I feel like it’s important because the art that I feel most represented in has always been created by artists that identify as female. For a long time it was made obvious that we weren’t welcome in the industry or that our work wasn’t as valuable, so for it to be such a prominent part of society now is a sign of it changing. It’s important that we work together to make sure other women, who may not necessarily be otherwise, are heard.
Your self-portraits are beautiful. Why do you think so many of us struggle with self-acceptance?
Thank you. I mean there’s a whole load of reasons, and obviously it differs from person to person but I think social media does play a lot into it. It’s too easy to go on Instagram now and scroll past hundreds of photos of ‘perfect’ people and feel lesser about yourself, even though our Instagrams only really show a highlight reel of our lives. Also, advertising doesn’t help, we’re constantly being sold things that would make us more ‘appealing’, so these days it’s so easy to pinpoint flaws, but it’s why representational artwork is so important.