They Made This – Holly’s High Fives: Clare Shilland

Each month I do a column called Holly’s High Fives for They Made This, in which I ask photographers I love about their careers so far – via five questions and five images. This month I chatted with Clare Shilland…

Here’s an extract, you can read the full article here.

Clare Shilland : Damaris. From a new project being published in September 2015 with Hanna Kelifa and Suzy Wood.

Clare Shilland : Damaris. From a new project being published in September 2015 with Hanna Kelifa and Suzy Wood.

“In the third instalment of her High Fives series, photographer Holly Falconer chats with Clare Shilland, a London-based snapper whose work she’s long had a crush on. Her carefree portraits are so full of freedom and joy, you can’t help but be drawn in. She’s music mag Beat’s regular cover photographer, and her clients range from i-D, The Gentlewoman and The Wire to Supreme and Marni.

Clare is known for the brilliant subjects she chooses to work with, relationships that have resulted in stunning projects such as Love from Alice, an intimate photo story on Alice Goddard which used Swedish locations sourced from found or received postcards, and her excellent series on female drummers. The people she snaps also confound stereotypes: girls sometimes look tough, and boys gentle – and everyone’s snapped in soft, non-judgemental black and white or pared-down blocks of colour. It all makes for compelling, unfussy work. Holly caught up with Clare to find out more…

…I love your portraits for music mag Beat. You can really see a thread in them continuing on from your earlier work, such as your portraits at the Underage Festival, to now. Their beautiful simplicity works so well with Dean Langley’s art direction. Can you tell me about some of your favourite Beat shoots from the past few years?
I love all the stuff I do for Beat. Dean asked me to shoot the cover for the first issue with Warpaint, which is probably my favourite. I got the train up to Manchester where they were on tour.I scouted around and found a freshly-painted white hoarding in a back street near the venue. I took the four girls there, the sun came out, and we took the best pictures ever. They were just dressed in their tracksuit pants and it was super natural and fun and free – I did 10 pages and a cover in about an hour. Serendipity.The last one I did is also a favourite – Skinny Girl Diet, also a cover that came out a couple of months ago. Those girls are so cool it’s hard to take a bad picture of them!…”

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