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Student Voices

Student Spotlight | Ellis Duckworth

By UALHalls 30 Jun 2023

Meet Ellis, a second year Fashion Photography student at London College of Fashion. 📸

Ellis is one of our Reps at The Costume Store and he has spoken about his course and practice.

a person looking at the camera with a sombrero and holding a handheld fan in front of their face

Coming from a small town in North Wales, moving to a huge city like London came with a lot of culture shock. Being surrounded by this amount of diversity wasn’t what I was used to, but was what I needed.

I gained a sense of self as well as finding places I felt I belonged, people I felt I belonged with. Being surrounded by so many creative talents in so many skills and avenues just fed my creativity and pushed me to be the best photographer I could be.

Collaboration as a fashion photographer is a necessity, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. My work is filled with my friends who are stylists, make-up artists, models and more who have come together to create these images. UAL is a hub of all these incredible people who want to create and there’s no better space than that. A backdrop of the city of London also helps.

Fashion Photography has always been something I’ve enjoyed. Starting with my friends and I taking simple images in fields, eventually moving on and studying it in at a-level, then choosing to study it at University.

a woman wearing a green shirt

On the course itself I’ve developed so many skills and explored so many new areas I didn’t even know existed.

We’ve explored digital and analogue using both new developing technologies and those from the past. Fashion film is something new I have explored and have taken a liking to. The varying aesthetics and endless new possibilities in using moving image has expanded my creativity tenfold, even introducing me to a career I never knew existed.

My favourite aspect about the course however, is the lecturers and guest speakers. Learning the stories and anecdotes of their work and their lives that enrich their practice as photographers gives me more enthusiasm to continue creating. In fact, many of the speakers are alumni from the course. Seeing them go from exactly where I am to the brilliant adventures they’re having is so inspiring.

a person in front of a white background smeared with paint

My latest work is surrounding my life and personal experience dating in the modern era. There are so many issues with self doubt and insecurity that’s only enhanced by modern technology such as dating apps.

Not to mention being a part of LGBTQ+ community and the added difficulties that come with that. Translating this into moving image was a big task but I decided to use stills of photography within my work, adding an element to represent the mental turmoil the main character was facing.

Smear of paint on a black background

Using my own personal experience into my work always enhances it and adds an intimate touch.

I wrote a script as well as directed, filmed and edited, to create a short piece. It felt like an intimate piece of work and is something I want to expand on in future.

Fashion filmmakers, such as Nadia lee Cohen, who studied on my very course are huge inspirations and use just the correct amount of uniqueness to create something visually interesting with importance.

a woman standing in front of kitchen cupboards posing for the camera

If you would like to check more of Ellis' work, you can check out his Instagram @ellisdphotography.

Do you have a story to tell, or are you working on a project that you'd like to share? Our Student Spotlight series is just the place for you! For more information, DM us (@UAL_HallsLife) on Instagram. We'd love to hear from you!