The Spring Edit Creative Direction & Styling: Samantha Ria // @SamanthaRia Photographer: Benjamin Glean // @BenjaminGleanphotosandstaff …
PAUSE Meets: Gallucks
Interviewer: Johnson Gold // @Johnson_Gold
Presenter: Elias Riadi // @EliasRiadi
Video Director/Editor: Isus Williams // @IsusWilliams
2nd Camera Operator: Lisa Bouvery
Photographer: Romany Francesca // @RomanyFrancesca
PAUSE explores London-based menswear fashion blogger & YouTuber Joel Mcloughlin’s wardrobe, also known as Gallucks. Our presenter Elias Riadi takes a look into his wardrobe in North East London and talks about Galluck’s favourite pieces. Watch the video above and read our interview by our Editor Johnson Gold who sat down with Joel to discuss his career as a full-time fashion blogger, challenges as a freelancer and tips on how to become a fashion influencer today.
Since you work as a freelancer, everyday, describe what you do from Monday to Sunday?
It’s different every day. I wake up one day and I literally have nothing to do, but then the next three days will be super busy, it can change all the time. I could be taking photos if I’ve got projects or new outfits that I want to shoot, so I could be meeting up with photographers or PRs, brands, meeting up with friends. It’s never the same but that’s what I love about it because it’s always different.
Tell us how you got to the point where you were able to do what you love full time.
I was talking to my friend the other day about this, and we were saying how when we started blogging and Instagramming we weren’t trying to make money off of it, I just wanted to post pictures of my outfits and then it just kind of snowballed and it became apparent that this could actually be a job. I never set out to be a blogger or a Youtuber, it just kind of happened, but I think that’s the best way of doing it because if you set out to make money people can see through it.
I knew I could do it full time when I was just making enough money, like when I hit 20,000 followers I started charging brands to work with me because I was already working Monday to Friday at Net-a-Porter and I said, if you want me to go out and shoot this and you want it up for your campaign or whatever, then you’re gonna need to pay me because I don’t mind doing my own stuff in my own time, but if you want this to happen you’re going to have to pay me.
When did you start working at Net-a-Porter and when did you quit and start doing the blogging?
I started working at Net-a-Porter around Christmas 2014. I was doing product styling in the studio, so like flat lays for their Instagram or product shots for Mr Porter, Net-a-Porter and The Outnet. I enjoyed it there, the team is amazing and it was interesting to work for such a big company, but I loved blogging more because you can do your own thing. You’re basically controlling your own publication in a sense. I thought I’d rather dedicate my time to doing stuff my own way rather than the Net-a-Porter way. So after a year I saved up from all my blogging stuff and I just lived off my Net-a-Porter salary and then I said I was going to quit.
So you got yourself prepared for going freelance?
Yep, I wouldn’t recommend anyone to go freelance if they didn’t have a substantial amount of savings. What I’ve experienced this year is that it just changes all the time, so one month I’ll get loads of jobs and the next month I might only get one. You need to have money to pay your rent, to pay for food, to pay for everything. As long as you’ve got a safety blanket of money that’s fine. And that was my question that I asked a lot of people before I quit as well.
How much money did you save?
I think I save around £8,000, which was to me the most money I’ve ever had and I felt good with that, I definitely needed it because London is expensive. If you live with your parents that’s an even better way to save money.
Talking about money, you’ve worked with many brands, what has been your biggest paycheck?
Oh wow, I won’t say the brand but I guess I can say how much. It was a commercial brand and it was just under £3,000.
And what did you do?
Instagram and blog stuff.
How regularly do you get these kinds of projects with brands?
Every month, it just depends on what they’re doing and what you’re doing. I’ve done quite a lot of travelling this year as well which has been amazing.
Let’s talk about your transition into blogging, because you started off mainly with the style posts on your Instagram and then launched the blog?
Well no, I’ve had a blog the whole time, but it was called The Hallowed Ground. I relaunched as Gallucks.com when I went full time at the start of this year. I changed it because my YouTube and Instagram was Gallucks so it just made sense. I’d bought the domain years ago meaning to change it but I didn’t have time, so when I quite my job I finally had the time to make my website how I wanted it to be.
And what made you come up with the name Gallucks?
Everyone asks me this. Basically, it used to be my username on loads of online games when I was younger, like Habo Hotel and stuff like that. There was an anime program called Beyblade, and one of the monsters was called Galux so I just changed the spelling and then I was the only thing on Google that came up when you searched Gallucks. I didn’t want to call my blog the fashion something or anything like that.
Now you’ve transitioned from the blog into YouTube as well, tell us about your experience on Youtube so far?
When I was at university I actually posted two or three YouTube videos which were just me filming my outfits in the mirror – they’re set to private now so no one can see those anymore – but for a long time in my head I’ve wanted to do these kinds of videos but it took me a long time to build up the courage to actually get in front of the camera. I don’t know what made me do it, I just sat down one day and decided I’m going to talk about my sneaker collection and that was my first video. Ever since then I’ve tried to do videos all the time and it’s funny because I look back and I can see a change in how I act in front of the camera.
Do you feel like your confidence has grown?
Yeah definitely, people even comment and say things like you’ve changed so much and I’m so happy you’re more confident now. So I really like Youtube, it’s a really nice community of people, and everyone’s a lot more engaged than they are on Instagram or the blog because those people just look at things whereas people on Youtube like to leave comments.
What is it that you love about the colour black so much?
It’s so easy! You just get ready and you’re just wearing like black T-shirt, black jeans, black shoes, black coat…
Has that always been your aesthetic?
No, I used to wear a lot of prints. Before Net-a-Porter I had some other fashion jobs, like I used to intern for Katie Eary ages ago, and she’s a heavy print designer and I used to love that kind of stuff and wore loads of prints. I also did assistant styling on X Factor and I just got kind of sick of clothes, I was just like I don’t want to see any colours anymore, so I just wore black because it’s easier in my head to put together. Then it kind of became my thing and I still wear all black outfits sometimes, but I’ve started to introduce colour again now, but weird ones like orange.
Where do you find your inspiration?
Everywhere really, Instagram, friends, I’ll look at the lookbooks of Fear of God and Off-White and try and recreate them in my own way.
And talking about brands, what are your favourite brands?
Off-White, Fear of God, Vetements and smaller brands as well like The Incorporated, C2H4.
And which brand do you think is really pushing it for 2016? Like that one streetwear brand that’s really done it for you?
I’m gonna say Off-White, because I used to see Off-White kind of like Pyrex, like this streetwear brand with shorts and hoodies, but this year it’s completely changed with sneakers, biker jackets, all really nice, new and interesting pieces that I wouldn’t have expected – especially their womenswear as well it looks insane.
What is your favourite sneaker brand?
Adidas. I love all the collaborations like Raf Simons, Rick Owens, Yeezy, Y-3, I literally live in my Y-3s and I’m obsessed with Raf Simons and Yeezys, so Adidas are literally my favourite sneaker brand, they’re doing some amazing stuff.
If you weren’t blogging, what other job do you think you’ be doing?
I’d probably still be doing styling, because before I was blogging full time and I was still at Net-a-Porter I was shadowing menswear styling at Mr Porter so I was learning to do menswear styling for e-comm, but there’s not a lot of freedom in it. When you work for a bran you kind of have to stick to their guidelines.
Give us five tips for anyone who wants to do what you do?
First one would be to just do it, because I get so many people saying like I’m going to start a Youtube channel, I’m going to start a blog or I’m going start an Instagram and it’s like just do it, stop talking to me about it!
Second tip would be to really have an idea of what you want to get across. What’s your angle? Mine is my outfits, my clothes and my style.
Third tip is to be consistent. If you do want to do blogging, Instagram or Youtube keep it coming and don’t stop for two months because everyone will forget about you, you need to stay in everyone’s peripheral.
Fourth tip would be don’t let people take advantage of you. For instance brands or PRs, because there are a lot of people who are trying to get on the hype of bloggers and Youtubers, so don’t give everyone the world for free. I know there’s some of that at the start, but have some self-respect.
My last tip would be to stay true to what you’re doing. Don’t copy someone else and don’t do something just because you think it will get you more likes or followers. Stay true to your own style whether you do fashion or lifestyle; just go with it because you like it, otherwise people can tell.
Speaking of that, with the boom of influencers this year it seems more brands are buying into advertising online with them. However, a lot of people just accept opportunities from anyone even when it has nothing to do with what they do but it’s a way to get paid. Do you think if you’re getting paid 10k for something but it has no connection to what you do, should you post it anyway or should you leave the job?
I think you should leave it, back away. I’ve said no to quite a lot of high paid jobs because they’re for apps that I would never use or for tea, and it’s pointless. You might as well delete your Instagram account if you’re going to post it because people know that you’re doing it for the money. I would just not do that kind of work because I take pride in what I do.
What are your hopes for the future?
I guess just to carry on going with my Youtube channel and Instagram, I think it’s still very early days, a lot of my mates have hundreds of thousands of followers. I’ve got my first ever collaboration with a brand coming out in the next few weeks, which is cool. It’s not clothes, it’s something a bit different and that’s coming out before Christmas. And then hopefully more of that in the future and maybe one day have my own brand, but that’s way in the future.
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