Presley Ann, Fashion Photography’s Polaroid Girl
Presley’s raw film shots serve as a refreshing look into the imperfect and down-to-earth facets of high-fashion and celebrity life.
Runway snapshots, backstage polaroids, edgy editorials, and celebrity shoots are among the star-studded highlights of Presley Ann’s high-profile portfolio. Based in New York and Los Angeles, Presley Ann captures the chic and fast-paced essence of the runway and the red carpet, working with fashion and pop culture icons Betsey Johnson, Lady Gaga, Kendall Jenner, and Gigi Hadid. Her roots in film photography have earned her the nickname “The Polaroid Girl,” as she often complements her elegant and crisp fashion flicks with vintage Polaroids. Her raw film shots serve as a refreshing look into the imperfect and down-to-earth facets of high-fashion and celebrity life. BWB had the privilege to explore these two worlds through the woman who captures them both.
Did you always know you wanted to be a photographer?
I began shooting on disposable cameras and 35mms when I was pretty young. My first camera, funny enough, was a blue jelly Kodak Barbie camera which I still own! My first subjects were my family, friends, and pets. I love taking pictures so much. In middle school, I joined the newspaper and had a pretty significant moment when I captured a stealth bomber flying over the school in honor of Veteran’s Day. My photo ran on the front page of the school paper, and the principal wrote me a note telling me I had a future in National Geographic! It’s funny to look back on that now and see how far I have come.
Who inspires you?
My grandma is my biggest inspiration, honestly. She is so fearless and takes on the world everyday no matter the obstacles. I hope to be half the woman she is in my everyday life.
Which runway show (or celebrity!) has been your favorite to photograph?
My favorite runway show to shoot for is Betsey Johnson! She is an absolute doll! Betsey will make a poster for every girl walking in the show with sweet notes written on it for them. Even at her age, she still finishes every show off with a cartwheel in the middle of the runway!
Is there a particular designer’s show you always look forward to seeing?
The most anticipated show I look forward to every year is the Victoria’s Secret show! It’s like a party from 8 am till 12 am, not to mention the models are so genuine and incredible.
What is your favorite memory / an exciting moment in your career?
I don’t think I can pick a favorite yet, I still have so many more memories to make!
Outside of your digital work, you’re passionate about film photography and instant photos in particular. What about film makes it so special to you?
Film photography is where I got my start, so there is something beautiful about being able to make it work with all the imperfections. Sometimes shots won’t turn out like you planned, and since there are no retakes, you grow to love what you capture along with all the happy accidents.
What beauty trends do you love?
The beauty trend that will never go out of style is healthy dewy skin. Taking care of your canvas is the most precious beauty tip you can follow!
What are some of your favorite beauty products?
The beauty products I swear by are some of the simplest things. My go-to favorite is the Benefit Cosmetics It’s Potent! Eye Cream, it really saves me on those long nights of shooting. I also place spoons in the freezer and every morning I apply sweet oil to my face and rub the frozen spoons along my face to get rid of puffiness.
Teresa Deely is a junior at Columbia University majoring in English and Creative Writing. As President of the Columbia University Glee Club, she loves to sing, make music, and celebrate multiple modes of artistic expression. She believes that one’s skin is yet another canvas and vehicle for art, and has loved styling her hair and applying makeup from a young age. While she has spent most of her time in educating youth and leading enrichment programs for children, she is highly motivated in discovering new ways to care for herself and sharing them with others.