16 May, 2016
What’s the most important thing to know about you?
That I am a true Gemini.
You exclusively photograph girls, was this a deliberate choice from the start or did it unconsciously come about?
I never planned it to be that way really. It was just I was always surrounded by girls who I found beauty in. I never really hung out with many guys, I think partially because of my own shyness. I never really knew how to approach them haha. But also because I am a girl, I can relate to them when I’m photographing them which I think makes it easier and more comfortable.
The muse is often defined as ‘a woman, or a force personified as a woman, who is the source of inspiration’. Do you identify with that at all, either as a singular entity, girls as a group, or anything else?
Yeah I agree to an extent, because all my muses so far have been girls. However if there was a guy I was particularly fascinated and inspired by, I don’t think that definition fits because I wouldn’t be personifying him as a woman you know? But I definitely agree and identify with the last part. A muse is somebody I’d like to be, or who really interests me, who I find different from other people and see endless beauty in.
What is your favourite part of the creative process?
I love planning things. So I suppose when I have models and locations and everything to work out, I find that fun. Then I obviously love the actual shooting process, when you see your ideas come together, and you know it works.
Are locations important?
Yeah I think so. In a lot of my past work I was never really phased by locations and just worked with where I was at the time, however now I put a lot more effort into planning where I’m going to be shooting. I shoot a lot of the same people repeatedly, so changing location and obviously outfits etc helps me mix it up within my work, and create a different body of images.
Do you have a favourite photograph? Or series?
I love my American Beauty series on my website. I usually tend to plan all my shoots out, however when I was in the USA, I just shot everything randomly. We’d be walking down a street in NY, and I’d just make my friend suddenly stop and lean against a fence or something so I could take a photo of her. That series is so different to any of my others, and I think that’s why I like it so much. It also is like a scrapbook of that trip for me, it’s nice to look back at those photos and remember what I was doing in that moment in time.
What photographers do you most admire?
Petra Collins, Eddie O’Keefe, Nadia Lee Cohen, Mayan Toledano. I love Lauren Tepfer’s work too. She has an amazing ability to evoke atmospheres and make places that are so normal and everyday look otherworldly. I also love Linda McCartney’s portraits that she shot in the sixties.
If you could have a coffee with anybody alive, dead or fictional, who would it be?
Hmmm that’s a tough one. I guess either Lana Del Rey, Serge Gainsbourg or Jane Birkin.
What does the future hold for you?
You can never be sure, but I hope my future holds a lot more photography projects, exhibitions, making friends with like-minded people and perhaps a relocation to America.
Chloe Sheppard is a London-based film photographer. See more of her work here: www.chloeasheppard.com