“Goodness me, I’m quite old, so that would take a while. I graduated in Fine Art. Then I went on to gain experience in the fashion cupboards of Glamour, First, Eve, Elle and Vogue. I then went to Alexander McQueen in the role of an artwork assistant. Following on from that I went into styling and assistant styling, consulting brands and PR (both music and fashion). I then went to work at Cheer Up Clothing where I could pretty much combine everything I had done till then. Alongside this I was working as a freelance journalist and blogger, the bulk of my work being in the form of video interviews.”
“All different forms of creativity have a influence on each other and they often crossover. The more industries/mediums/styles you have knowledge of the more things you have to reference and compare. I also love to feel like I am constantly learning and expanding my knowledge because it spurs my passion for it further. I think passion shows through your writing – and will hopefully translate to the reader.”
That’s tricky I don’t really have that go-to celebrity these days. I am always online, so I am constantly absorbing images of ‘normal’ and celebrity style, which undoubtedly infiltrate whether I know it or not. I often see friends or fellow bloggers on instagram wearing things I like, which might spur me to check out the shop’s website. I think as I get older I’m less fussed about trends and dressing how I think I should be, and just going for what I am innately attracted to or what I think suits me and my personality.
Sometimes trends fall into this neatly though. I love watching Awards red carpet shows as I am still in love with the theatre and glamour of designer gowns – sadly I never get the opportunity to wear them myself. I guess my friends or people I follow on Instagram inspire my style the most. Beauty Wise, I think Nicole Richie does very cool stuff with her hair and make up. Luanna Perez-Garreaud, The Salty Blonde, and Native Fox are three bloggers I love to style watch.
Its a difficult one. So many of the things I try to encourage others to do I find so very hard to do for myself. It’s very difficult to stop comparing yourselves to others, and to stop caring what people think of you. In a way I want to maintain some of that worry because I think it helps ensure I stay a nice and grounded person….because I’d hate people to think I wasn’t a decent human. If you completely stop caring what people think of you there is a danger you become selfish.
I’ve created a board in my room which features words and images that help me remain positive grateful, but also ambitious. On the days that I am feeling a bit sorry for myself, or lacking in something (money/followers/confidence) I try and look at that. I think having people in your life that remind you how lucky you are helps greatly too.
When I first started I didn’t really know what I was doing at all. I had always uploaded my interviews there, but had no idea I could even get subscribers or that there was a whole community on there, and that it could actually become your job. It’s funny when you are in that world you can’t imagine not knowing about it, or the people at the helm of it, but it’s one of those things you either in…or you are out. Some people couldn’t care less about YouTube. I didn’t subscribe to anyone, and had no idea about the common TAG videos, who was friends with who in the industry, and how it really worked. I’m still learning and still not really on board with it all. I find I am constantly tussling with it, and my part in it, as there is so much I don’t agree with….I digress.
I think now I’ve realised that, although i’m aware it is important to build and audience and subscribers, the most important thing for me is to feel I am contributing in a positive way. My honest vlogs for example, won’t be big hitters, but from the lengthy responses I get I can tell they are of comfort to a few people. That means the world to me. If I wanted to be a big YouTuber I would concentrate on Fashion Haul and Beauty Tutorials, and although I will do the odd one when I want to, it will never be the bulk of my channel. I feel you should do what represents you, and be genuine – I think savvy people will spot the phoneys.
I would like to see people using their vast audience to talk about important issue and topics – sometimes it feels a bit vacuous. That said, it is so important that people have somewhere they can go to for an escape. It would be a bit hard going and miserable if all YouTubers were tacking tricky issues, sometimes it’s nice to give your brain a break and watch a silly video. I wish more of the fashion/beauty bloggers promoted positive body images and confidence….too many are about how to change how you look rather than embracing the wonderful things you already have.
I hope they would come away feeling comforted, perhaps more confident regarding a certain situation – whether it be about their body, a job interview, losing their virginity. I also hope that they feel they are seeing the real me, embarrassing tales , cringe behaviour and all.
This is a constant challenge…lack of money. So many places expect you to write or do interviews for free, and you do it because you think ‘this may be the one to change everything’….it rarely does. It is important to pay your dues but it is also very important to put value on the work you do. I have got this balance very wrong over the years and people have taken advantage.
It is also very competitive, and sadly people who are better at networking end up getting the opportunities you want. I’ve had to become resilient, sometimes you send over pitch after pitch with no result, but you got to keep going. People in this industry can be very flaky to so you will often be let down, so you have to try very hard not to get bitter and twisted about it all.
I guess the most obvious one is that it’s glamorous… far from it. You are often left waiting in a very dingy backstage room, for an artist who makes it very obvious they don’t want to talk to you. Sometimes you will prep for an interview for a whole day for the artists to say he can’t be bothered to do press – often meaning a wasted commute and loss of money.
I think some people think it’s an amazing job because you get to meet ‘famous’ musicians, but sadly this part has never been a pull for me. I guess after a little while you realise that they are just humans, same as you and me, some are nice, some are not, some have bad breath, some are sleazy….some are completely different to the brand they project. If you are doing press at festivals it also means that you generally don’t get to see any live music, because you are stuck in the press tent all day. It is occasionally harder for women too….sometimes artists expect you not to know what you’re talking about.
I wish I had known how hard it was to progress. Hard work doesn’t equal success/money/jobs sadly. Neither does talent. Unfortunately I see a lot of people getting work others deserve because of who they know. That said, it should never stop you from trying to do a good job – as that certainly does your chances some good. I wish I had thought of the implications of putting yourself out there online and in publications. As you can imagine you are open to all sorts of comments when reviewing or chatting to people’s favourite bands.
Make sure you are hugely passionate about music – you will need to be to keep going, as it isn’t always easy and there won’t be a lot of money in it. Do work experience and internships as soon as you can, preferably when you are still studying, so that when you graduate you already have experience and contacts under your belt. Make sure you are doing it for the reasons – don’t do it just to meet your idols, because quite often you will be disappointed. Be in it for the love of the songs, the lyrics, the performance….and having an interest in finding out incredible stories and investigating intriguing personalities. It will be a lot easier for you if you have a secure job alongside this work, just for financial stability. Be prepared to work very odd hours and miss out on wedding/birthdays etc.
Don’t give up. Persevere – if you get a no to a job application, keep in touch and follow up in a few month’s time with your updated CV. Don’t hound them and become a nuisance, but the right amount of checking in will prove your determination and passion for music.
Don’t fangirl. Obviously many do and it’s fine, the artist probably find it very flattering and often endearing. That said I’d much prefer they saw me on the same level as them – just two professionals doing their job. I try to be confident, friendly but ultimately professional.
Don’t expect things to go to plan. You may turn up and the artist may decide he/she doesn’t want to be on camera. You might be expecting the singer, then end up with the drummer. Try to be flexible as best you can and stay calm. It usually isn’t the PR’s fault.
Do network – but be yourself, don’t force it.
Do keep a blog. Even if you don’t have a job yet a blog is a great way of creating an online portfolio of work. Review the gigs you attend and the CD’s you buy – it’s always good to keeping practicing your writing skills too.
Do research prior to an interview – try and avoid the generic questions. Nothing worse that seeing someone eye roll as you ask a question. They will also like that you seem to be interested in what they do.
Do turn up to interviews on time, and meet your deadlines. You don’t want to be responsibility for a whole schedule going wrong. If you deliver the goods the PR’s are also more likely to grant you future interviews.
Do find your own style and voice – it may be what makes you stand out to other candidates. But make sure you are malleable, sometimes you will have to change to suit a certain publication’s style of content.