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Phlogger aka Andrew Walmsley

A website dedicated to photography showcasing articles, interviews, reviews and Photography Insights podcast.

Interview with a model


interviewing joanne iles
Photographer: Jay Good
Having worked with a bunch of models recently, it only seemed sensible to interview someone else in this field.  There was Safia Pixie and Thea Rose last year, so it was time for somebody different.  After seeing many shots of Joanne (Jo-jo) by Steven Blackburn, it felt right to try to approach Jo.  Luckily Steven brought her to a model shoot and we talked and agreed on interviewing.
Jo-Jo had a level of professionalism, calm and experience that was intriguing. After some discourse Jo-Jo worked promptly to bring you this interview.


Tell us a little about yourself, where you grew up, what was life-like.
“I’m a Nottingham born & bred girl, although no relation to Robin Hood 😉
I went to University in Nottingham and studied Business Studies. From there I worked in the Financial Services for nearly 20 years. Although redundancy in the middle of all that, gave me a chance to travel the World.
I have a day job now, which is admin based, so modelling is like a breath of fresh air. A chance to try different things & see some amazing places
Life is good – home consists of me and a crazy cat called Murdoch. My family all live close by, which means a great Sunday dinner when I get the chance 😊”

interviewing joanne iles
Photographer – Steven Blackburn


What is your earliest memory of photography?
“Luckily my parents never took a lot of photos, so there aren’t too many bad photos of me. The ones that exist are on slides, so not easily viewable. I’m from a time where mobiles didn’t exist, so thankfully any scary selfies are locked away in a box, and will never to see the light of day. 😊
My first camera was a 110 camera which meant sending off the film to Truprint and awaiting the results.”
We can see from your work you are a model. How do you sell yourself to potential photographers or clients?
“I use a variety of social media to advertise my skills. From modelling host sites to Instagram & Facebook. The key is to be diverse, so you can appeal to all.
I enjoy working with all photographers, from newbies to experienced photographers. The further I can spread my work, the better.
I think the key is to be approachable, although sometimes you do have to switch off the laptop and just put your feet up.”


What is on the calendar for 2018?
“I have a few fab shoots coming up from modelling at an aeropark to jetting off to Greece. However, I still have plenty of dates available to help create some amazing imagery
With starting a new job, I will have less time to model, but I will always try to accommodate any suggestion where I can.”
Where do you see the future of modelling? Is it more edit than reality?
“This is a tough question and a difficult one to answer. Anyone can be a model/photographer, and this is made easier with the numerous modelling websites & with social media. However, to be good at your chosen route, takes hard work & dedication.
Where the industry will lead is difficult to guess.”
interviewing joanne iles
The Daydreamer by Steven Blackburn


What is one of the most rewarding locations you modelled?
“I have been lucky enough to shoot in some beautiful places, home and abroad. It would be impossible to pinpoint just one. One favourite of mine was on a jetty in Lincolnshire. The reason was because it was a shoot that had been talked about & planned for well over a year. So when we finally got to shoot it on a beautiful sunny day, it was just epic. The picture has even been printed and now hangs proudly in my house.”
As a model do you have a favourite outfit, accessory or theme?
“My bunny head (it’s latex, so bunnies have been harmed 😉 )…. I only shoot it with one photographer, as we have join custody of Bunny… but I do so love when Bunny comes out to play. 😊”
During 2017 you started shooting a camera yourself. What was this like?
“Using a DSLR camera & not in auto mode, is a scary thing – there is so much to learn. However, I am enjoying this steep learning curve. I get a buzz when I know what adjustments I need to make to get the shot I want.
I am lucky that I have some great photography friends, who are patient & happy to show me what I need to know when I have my camera in my hand.
Photography is addictive and I am starting to understand why people love doing it. Although, very blooming expensive. 😉”
Will you carry on in front of the camera or are trying to move behind the camera in future?
“I love modelling – it has been one of the best things I have ever done, so I cannot see me stepping away just yet!
The photography allows a different creative part of me to blossom.
So, I hope I can be greedy & keep doing both :)”
interviewing joanne iles
Photographer – Jeremy Howitt


When you were a child, what career/job/field did you want to go into?
“Steam train driver – I so love everything about them, especially the smell.  Can you guess, I was a bit of a tomboy as a kid 😊”
Name one of your strengths and one of your weaknesses
“My strengths are my loyalty & enthusiasm – I will always go the extra mile for anyone.
My weaknesses are that I am too hasty, in either the spoken word or things that I do.”
How many handbags do you own?
“Too many…… please don’t judge me 😉”
Walkers are paying you to create a new flavour of crisp, what do you call it?
“Jacket potato with cheese & beans… Or strawberry shortbread cheesecake… these should exist in my world.”
Backstreet boys or Take that?
“No contest…. Take That all the way – have they ever done a bad song :)”
Tell me something you learned in history from school
“That war, what is it good for – absolutely nothing”
The queen or the band?
“The band every time – the Highlander soundtrack is one of my all-time faves.”
Back to the future or Ghostbusters?
“Back to the future – who wouldn’t want to travel in time (although always loved the Stay Puft marshmallow man 😊.”
Dirty dancing or fame
“Dirty Dancing – no one puts baby in the corner”
Parma violets or love hearts?
“Love hearts – parma violets taste nasty”


If you would like to work with Jo-Jo or look at her portfolio, please use the following links:

Facebook – missjojo101
Instagram – jojo_model101
Purple port – jojo36

interviewing joanne iles
Photographer – Dean Wilkinson


Joanne has been a delight to work with, she has always been nothing but friendly in her messages.  After meeting with her she comes across as a straight-talking person who is very experienced.  She would make a great teacher for aspiring models.

A lady from my era too, so a couple of random questions were thrown in on purpose.  Parma violets are definitely the poorer man’s love hearts, for sure!  The crisp option sounds very wrong, but no doubt would taste wonderful.

What is really clear in her work, is she works with really good photographers.  She really knows how to get the best out of a scene too.  Jo-jo must have a huge wardrobe of clothes.  Although in some of her work she doesn’t need many clothes!  However, even though there are “racier” shots, they are so elegant and well executed.

Jo-jo is a lovely lady, so get in touch with her now and collaborate.

Thanks for reading.




More Information

Credit for images are to the following photographers, please click on their links to find out more:

Dean Wilkinson – @spudgun777

Jay Good – @jason_good

Jeremy Howitt – purpleport

Steven Blackburn – @stevenblackburnphotography


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