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In conversation with…Cherie Carman, Shoot Lead at Selfridges

Meet Cherie Carman, a Shoot Lead at high end department store Selfridges and is a BA (Hons) Photography graduate.  Cherie is on the judging panel for this year’s Beyond the Frame photography competition, so we catch up with her to discuss her journey to this point. 

Why did you choose to study photography?

Initially I was leaning towards going on to study Psychology as that was also another subject I was studying at A level along with Photography and Graphic Communication at the time.

I felt this pressure to choose more of an ‘academic’ subject, however I decided to pursue something I had a passion for and enjoyed which is why I went on to apply for Photography courses, and lucky enough I got accepted onto the BA (Hons) Photography course at Norwich University of the Arts. 

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Can you tell us about your role at Selfridges?

My role has changed and grown over the years since working for Selfridges, but I am currently a full time team member within the online photo studio, falling under the in-house photography department as Shoot Lead.

All departments within the photo studio work very close together day to day, ranging from the styling team and art direction to production. Like everyone else we strive on a daily basis to produce the highest quality e-commerce fashion imagery for the online Selfridges store and online platforms.  

What do you enjoy most about photography?

For me what I enjoy most is that it allows me to meet and work with a vast amount of talented and creative individuals on a daily basis, who can come to inspire you to produce new and exciting projects together. 

Where do you find inspiration?

Before COVID-19, I would love to go to a range of museums in London. The last one I managed to see was new Kraftwerk to Chemical Brothers exhibition at the Design Museum, which I highly recommend going to when it can reopen.

I try to take inspiration from all types of medium as restricting yourself to just photography limits your opportunity for creativity and produce something new and exciting.  

“When possible, assisting is a great way to get a feel for the industry.”

What’s next for your practice, any projects or plans?

Like many COVID-19 has most definitely impacted a number of my projects I had hoped to work on, but taking advantage of this strange time I have continued to produce a number of mood boards and concepts which I hope to bring to life as soon as possible. 

Do you have any advice for photography students or new graduates?

When possible assisting is a great way to get a feel for the industry, and learning first hand on a job is more valuable to you then just relying on university workshops. It gives you a chance to learn lighting setups and work with new equipment, as well as the opportunity for social networking.  

View more of Cherie’s work on her Instagram

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