With over 70,000 followers on instagram and a list of impressive commissions to boot, LCC graduate Francesca Allen is a new creative to watch. Citing her inspirations as love, adolescence and friendship, her innate ability to capture youth and youth culture made her the obvious choice to shoot our A/W shoe guide New Shoe Rules . We caught up with her on set…
How did you get into photography?
I started taking pictures when I was 15. They were mainly of my sister, who I still shoot, a lot! I started out doing model tests and things in London, then graduated from a Photography BA last summer.
Was there a defining point when you realised photography was what you wanted to do?
I’ve always thought my work was kind of irrelevant – a bit frivolous and too ‘fun’. But at my final BA show – seeing my work on the wall really meant something. That’s when I knew photography would be my career.
What inspires your work the most?
People, I guess. I just like hanging out with people. I’ve been shooting a bunch of 14-year-old girls every month and I just think they’re really interesting. Although the ones I know are always getting grounded by their parents and can’t come and do the pictures! I’m just so interested in people and teenagers and that period of life where you are on the cusp of adolescence.
If you could shoot anyone, who would it be?
Cassie from Skins. I have this teen fantasy of shooting her since I was younger, even though her character represents a lot of negative things – but I think she has this amazing spirit. I have a total girl-crush on her.
Describe your personal style.
It’s a bit charity shop mess! Somewhere between very girly and very scruffy. I wear a lot of lingerie as outerwear. I find it hard to look very clean and put together, so I just throw it all on.
What music are you into?
I really like Mac Demarco and Brian Jonestown Massacre, they’re amazing. And I love Prince and Fleetwood Mac. And I just saw Cocorosie play in Brighton and it was insane. They’re quite scary, but great.
Any advice for budding photographers?
Someone gave me really good advice recently – don’t worry if you can’t do everything and you’re not this or that. It doesn’t matter. It’s really important to find your own style and develop that. That’s when your work becomes really interesting – when a photographer has such a distinct style that you see their pictures and know it’s them immediately.
Check out Francesca’s work in our New Shoe Rules shoot.