Danielle Painting | 5 Minutes With

Shining a spotlight on talented freelance creatives during the UK lockdown, this week we get to know London based photographer and retoucher, Danielle Painting. In these times of fear and uncertainty when staying home means saving lives while simultaneously damaging many freelancers sole source of income, Danielle believes we should weather the storm and will come out of it as a community, stronger than ever. We couldn’t agree more.

Read on as we discover what inspires her incredible streetstyle portraits, ask about advice for emerging photographers and find out how she’s spending her isolation time.

Hey Danielle, thanks for chatting with us. Tell us about who you are and what you do! 

 I am a Freelance Photographer and Retoucher located in London

 How long have you been freelancing and how are you finding it?

I’ve been doing photography at almost every spare waking moment/weekends for the past 6/7 years. After 5 years in full time employment as a retoucher I finally decided to “make the (big & scary! jump” in March.. I left almost simultaneously as the virus hit the UK, possibly the worst timing ever, but if us creatives and freelances are able to weather this storm we will come out stronger.. and we will, but we will have to adapt for a while.

What inspires you to create?

A combination of other artists work, the rapport and spark you build with each unique collaboration, and the environment around me. 

What do you look for when choosing your editorial models?

The most one-worded/cliche answer would be “unusual”. But essentially the instant feel of if they fit the project in mind. You can’t also assume it’s going to work once on location, there has to be a synergy of things working. But you will always come away with something if you are all on the same page.

You shoot a lot of streetstyle, especially LFW, how do you approach the people you shoot? 

It helps I love talking to everyone and anyone! This started from a young age from my time living abroad in both the States and France! Being the “New kid” more than once forces you out of your comfort zone.

Tell us about the best streetstyle outfit you’ve ever seen shooting at LFW

It would be impossible to nail one down but probably Tokyo had the most photo worthy outfits!

Which project are you most proud of and why? 

I think I would have to pick my recent shoot with Billy for Fuucking young magazine! One of my goals this year is to shoot for magazines whom inspire me.

What would you dream creative collaboration be?

That’s a hard one! At the moment I’ve been binge watching Netflix’s “Next in Fashion” and I would love to do a shoot with Angel Chen designs! 

Are you self isolating right now? 

Absolutely. There is no “blitz spirit” or stiff upper lip against a virus. Staying home will save lives, and if NHS workers are asking us to do something, you have to ask yourself what more convincing do people need.

Do you have a quarantine routine? 

As someone who deals with anxiety it can be incredibly easy to feel hopeless. 

It’s in development but my top tips for staying sane as we are just entering this period. Get dressed! Don’t over consume click bait news. Also use this time to do the “ I wish had time to do this” list! For me I’ve always wanted to try sculpting, so I have purchased myself some clay and paints! 

Do you have any advice for young artists looking to get into fashion photography? 

Practice technique. Don’t listen to anyone else. Be humble, it might get you further than you think! 

What will you be shooting next? 

The current situation has meant models, agencies and influencers have gone into shock mode. I am always looking for the next project so any collaborative minds should contact me! Social distancing permitting!

Follow Danielle on Instagram


Words: Genea Bailey