Framing May Day: Festival of Flowers


With May Day such an integral part of Oxford life, we were keen to capitalise on this for an editorial. For those of us who have already survived an Oxford May Day, the name summons up many, probably hazy, memories of what is necessary to pull an all-nighter. Of course amongst the recollections of increasingly fatigued dancing are the sounds of the beautiful Magdalen choir chiming at six o’clock in the morning. What’s often not thought about, however, are the origins of May Day. After a bit of research, we found out about the earliest May Day celebrations having ties to the Floralia, the Roman Goddess of Flowers, so we decided to use her as our fashion icon. Admittedly she probably doesn’t wear an eclectic mix of vintage and Topshop florals, nor bright pink lipstick, but Floralia was our inspiration nonetheless. 

Models: Nina Foster, Marie-Therese Alexis Png and Lucy Téa

Concept & Styling: Summer Taylor and Rosie Gaunt

Hair: Katie Jowett

Photographer: Holly Shackleton 










Behind the Scenes…


About our phographer, Holly Shackleton, and her work…

“I am in my first year studying photography at London College of Communications. My practice fits mainly into conceptual and fine art. I came up with the flower-box method, used for this shoot, during my project for my foundation year. I created it because I’m interested in challenging both myself and pho- tography through exploring alternative processes. This is why I use my flower-box rather than the over- done method of photoshop. I first used this method to photograph derelict pubs. The flowers I used in my box were picked from just outside these pubs. I liked the idea of actually using flowers which had lived and flourished outside the dying pubs so that they could act as a wreath to the closed pubs in my photography. I think the flower-box method worked particularly well in this May Day and Festival of Flowers themed edito- rial because of the way the shine of the Perspex box lends a misty and ethereal glow to the photography of the models. Also, as Rosie and Summer put it, the slight hazy feel perfectly captures May Day celebrations!” 






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