The UK is saturated with talented and dynamic creative introverts and extroverts working ridiculously long hours all over whilst at the same time managing to squeeze in being functional adults with healthy relationships, diets and friends. London is a melting-pot in particular for people such as these, and as a professional plate-spinner (not literally) I am surrounded by women and men who inspire me with their hard work and constant love for what they do. It is so important in such a fast-paced overly social society that we really focus on bigging-up and supporting the work that our peers do.
Thus, every month, on my website, alongside updates about my gigs I want to praise the radiance of people who I think are doing really awesome things in their field, and who I think you should check out.
Ellen Fife - Writer and Photographer
Ellen and I met in April this year in a park by the Old Vic by a chance encounter. Since then I’ve followed her photography and writing career - both of which are picking up incredible speed. She recently took my head shots for the website (check them out on my gallery page) - I would highly recommend her.
I’ve had terrible experiences with photographers in the past yet Ellen was so refreshing. Ellen was very open-minded and honest with what she thought was best on the day of our shoot - guiding me softly towards being natural, leading me away from my learned poses, pouts and facial ticks. The results were pictures that showed my natural face rather than my stage persona. Her photography is very raw, unobtrusive and enigmatic - there is no sense of posed, forced or feigned expressions in her pictures. Instead you feel as if you are looking at stolen secrets that have been snapped by chance.
Alongside her photography skills, Ellen is also a talented writer, currently developing plays in association with the Royal Court. Despite her giggly exterior however, her plays are anything but joyful... in fact, they are very, very dark....
Hazel Townsend - Model
Hazel is a 21 year old red-headed model with Storm Management. She’s been my flatmate for the last year. I love her indefinably.
She’s worth taking note of. Why? Because not only is Hazel the type of striking model that could easily be a fashion icon you’d find printed on a Vivienne Westwood t-shirt, but she is a smart, passionate environmental warrior with a passion for educating and informing us about how we look after ourselves in such a modern polluted world. Understanding the influence her job may have on young girls, Hazel is all about encouraging healthy organic eating and understanding how we can protect and nurture our bodies through diet and exercise, alongside campaigning for more eco-friendly ways of leading our lives and protecting our world and society.
Currently focussing on writing her own book, Hazel is a very multi-faceted creature and if you want a fashion icon who has ethos and fiery views, check her out.
Pippa Moyle - Journalist and Photographer
Pippa and I followed each other on twitter long before we met one another in person, and when we did it was a wonderful treat. I have always loved Pippa’s writing and online tips about upcoming bands, new comics and new fashion fixes, so when I met her in person I was genuinely VERY excited #girlcrushalert.
Pippa is the creator of Pippa Says - a brilliantly witty and perceptive fashion and music blog. If you need insights into new bands or new fashion tricks and hints, check her out. She’s a lovely writer and she lacks all the pretentiousness and garishness that can often be found on many blogs these days. She is not a selfish writer and her interest in discovering and nurturing new artistic talent in the UK is genuine. What is so refreshing and inspiring about a young woman like Pippa is that she is all about the sisterhood and supporting her fellow women.
With her incredible hard working ethos, there is no doubt this girl will make waves in the world of online journalism. We’re currently working together to create an event for 2015 celebrating the work of young women in the arts industries, so keep your eyes peeled.
Maddi Ridley - Actress and Model
In 2013 Maddi took over from me as General Manager at the Finborough Theatre in Earls Court. I’d met her in 2012 when she was one of the fresh faced interns and I was a sleep dreprived coffee-fiending theatre manager. Since then we’ve become very good friends and I’ve always appreciated her support and love.
Quite simply, Maddi is an ‘It Girl’ - but unlike many It Girls it seems, Maddi does a bloody lot of awesome work which earns her the title of being IT.
For one key fun reason: Her Instragram feed is just stunning. Check it out. This girl KNOWS how to use Apps and Filters and I am fairly in awe of how she does it. If you enjoy looking at pretty things, she is for you.
Second reason: Her blog Barnaby and Me is a great little insight into the mind of a young Aussie girl on a route to self-discovery in London - and it flags up loads of wonderful places to eat, drink and party in London. She, like Pippa, is also great at spotting new talent, so follow her on twitter to hear about new underground bands and plays to see around the city.
Third reason: She’s a talented little actress. From being THE WOMAN in THE WOMAN IN BLACK (how darn cool is that?) to performing with the National Theatre Youth group, Maddi has treaded the boards of many brilliant London stages already and considering she’s only 20, it’s pretty impressive stuff. We’re working on a new theatre project together to so get excited....
Sara Shulman - Producer & Creator of COMEDY BLOGEDY
Sara Shulman is the creator behind Comedy Blogedy - a well-respected blog that follows and documents all the comedy work going on around the UK. Sara started it back when she was a student at UCL. She is a good example of young entrepeneurship and multi-tasking. Saying that, I never see her except at Eminem concerts as the girl is ALWAYS working. It’s incredible. From seeing shows, interviewing acts, writing films to producing films - this girl is always ON THE GO. I have a feeling that maybe she is immortal, like Edward Cullen in Twilight, thus she does not need to function with sleep (that would explain how she gets so much done). You should follow Comedy Blogedy for sneak peaks of new comedy films and creations and promos from big comics touring.
Lucy Danser - Actor, Writer and Producer of Theatre - Creator of Chatback Comedy
Lucy and I have known each other in and around the theatre and comedy circuit for a good while now, and Lucy always gives the impression of someone who ‘know things’. She writes, she performs, she directs, she produces, she does everything to a very high standard - and she’s a bloody lovely lady.
Alongside organising well loved Chatback Comedy, she has recently transformed the upstairs room of resepcted comedy venue The Camden Head in Camden (not to be mistaken with the one in Angel) into the Camden Comedy Club - programming an incredibly array of diverse comedy nights from her own Stand Up Slam (an ace Poetry vs Comedy night), Z List Dead List, Funtimes to Edinburgh Fringe previews and comedy scratch nights. The programme for the next month is jam packed with superb talent from Sarah Bennetto to Joz Norris.
It’s important to support people like Lucy who are creating healthy, thriving locations for new work and new talent. It’s great to know Camden now has it’s own official COMEDY CLUB so if you are free in the area, you should pop down.
So there you have it, a group of very talented people that you should follow and support. If you know someone who is awesome too, please do message me and tweet me, I’m always keen to hear about who else is being brilliant in the capital!
Love Elf xxxx