Words by Hannah Tapping
Working as an advertising and commercial photographer, Jenna Foxton turns a feminine gaze towards all that she captures.
While Jenna did grow up in Devon, she feels something of an interloper having lived in London since the age of 12. She came to Cornwall five years ago which was a huge move as in her own words “London is considered to be this big career hub where everyone goes to make it”.
Studying animation at university, Jenna has always had an eye for the visual arts, working professionally in both graphic and web design, with explorative photography initially a hobby. “I began to enjoy photography more and more and it was through the encouragement of friends and picking up little jobs in London that I managed to take the leap from web design to full-time photography.” Combining a love of music with her work, gig photography became a staple in the early days; 14 years on, Jenna’s clients are as varied as they are diverse spanning drinks brands, fashion labels and food as well as private portraits and personal commissions.
For Jenna, who is self-confessed as a people person, her photography has always served as a medium of connection. From shooting music festivals to official marketing and much in between, Jenna’s work looks to capture fleeting moments, creating images of connection.
Having moved to Cornwall just before lockdown, Jenna returned to being a hobbyist photographer as a form of escapism during a time of uncertainty and experienced a monumental moment in terms of connecting with her photography. “Photography is so much more than me taking images that sell things; it’s my joy and how I connect with the world. I’m a hugely visual person and, very flatteringly, people tell me that they love how I see the world and that they wish they could see how I see. The way I visually connect is a constant form of exploration and escapism and being in Cornwall played a big part in that.”
Jenna’s relationship with photography has adopted a different dynamic since moving from the city to the coast: “Previously I would have berated myself for not taking photos of people or shooting editorial pieces, but now I care less about the subject and more about the feel. Today, I took photos of rocks simply because I loved their shape and dynamic. Living in Cornwall has allowed me to discover a very different form of visual exploration and a new way to identify with myself.” Jenna’s view is feminine, natural and understated with a subtle connecting energy: “So much of the world is shaped from that softer side of feminine energy and nature. We refer to her as mother nature for a reason and I think honouring her is slower, softer, nicer way of existing, viewing and being. I really do feel so privileged that this is how I earn my money and the way I get to explore the world.”
Jenna Foxton is represented by Common Era and Crave London.