Meet Lauren Engel. She’s a cool af photographer, YouTuber and editor at C-Heads. She’s photographed some of our celeb faves like Gigi, Paris and Cara and worked with some killer mags too. We caught up with her to chat secret addictions, Insta stalking and celebrity wannabe wives…
Tell us about yourself…
I’m half American, half Chinese. I grew up in Hong Kong and started photography here when I was 16. I went to Northeastern University in Boston for college and spent a year interning in New York where I was able to photograph a lot of people I’ve been looking up to for C-Heads! After graduating I returned back to Hong Kong and started working for Hypebeast. On the side I started starting my own YouTube channel where I have a podcast interview series named Sidewalk Talk. I interview chicks from all walks of life who kill it in what they do. So far I’ve gotten Olympic swimmer Hannah Wilson, international blogger Haute Pursuit and a few Hong Kong supermodels like Cara G.
What’s it like working for Hypebeast?
I do data/marketing and work on the app and SEO for the website. I love working here, Hypebeast combines what I am passionate about–fashion and the tech side of things. The people here are also really cool and sweet.
Tell us about C-Heads?
Being a part of the C-Heads family was really fun! The founders are really sweet and passionate about what they do. They interviewed me as a photographer nearly 6 years ago and since then I contributed frequently. Last year I became part of the team doing a lot of the music/culture sections. I also had a number of series on there including Modern Woman where I interviewed girls who are killing it–we got Miss USA, Jojo, and social media stars on there. I lived in a number of places like Hong Kong, Boston and Australia and interviewed and shot some of the local girls there. Another series I had was New Generation where I interviewed and shot multi-racial girls and asked them about their identity.
Describe your style in 4 words?
Nostalgic, edgy, colourful and casual.
What emoji best describes you?
The one with the swirly eyes haha I feel like I’m always frazzled by life.
Who’s the best person you’ve worked with?
Brett Blackman. We found each other through Instagram when I will still in Hong Kong and a year after we finally met in the States. He’s the manager of my bf (and introduced us!) and my close friend Manila Killa. Through him I have met so many music people on the same page and we have all become a supportive family. He’s also so passionate about what he does.
What do you love about Missguided?
The style on Missguided is always so on point especially with the trends. I love the models you guys use (I’ve photographed a few of them haha!) It’s hard to stop myself from wanting everything ;-D
Who are you listening to at the moment?
My music taste has always been all over the place. One moment I’m listening to Lapsley, then Popcaan, Billie Eilish (she’s so talented!) and TALA.
What’s your song to get you ready for a party?
A lot of throwback R&B like Kat De Luna, Cherish, Keri Hilson and some Fergie.
What has been your favourite place you’ve travelled to?
Oman is stunning; I went there with my family. We travelled around Dubai then went to Oman. In Oman we camped in the Beduin areas in the desert. Trying their local food and meeting local people was really interesting as well. I remember breaking my lens in the desert because of all the sand that went in and stopped the lens from being able to zoom (couldn’t stop photographing!). One of my best memories of that trip was rolling and running around the sand dunes with my brother.
What’s your spirit animal?
I’m not a huge animal person but I love cartoon “animals”. I feel like Totoro would be my spirit animal haha.
Who are you currently stalking on Instagram?
Hands down: @prettyfrowns, @burimova and @vanellimelli
I love how they really incorporate a photography aspect in their pictures. Their feed make me feel so much more than just a bloggers pictures. Their photographic eye, colouring and composition is just stunning.
What makes you laugh?
My dad. Since I was born he is able to crack me up everyday. He’s great at impersonations and has such a funny perspective.
What’s your secret addiction?
My bf and I love watching food documentaries especially those about sashimi/sushi and steak. The food looks so good especially on camera and I find it really interesting to learn about it.
Who’s your celebrity wannabe wife?
I never really had a celebrity crush growing up. After reading more about Amanda Seyfried and watching her interviews. I felt like there was something weird and quirky about her that I love. She has a taxidermy hobby that I find kind of cool.
What would be your superhero power?
Being able to jump between living in different centuries. Sometimes when I listen to music I feel like I want to be transported to when that music was played out everywhere and dance to it.
What was the first thing you did this morning?
Stretch and regret staying up late.
Tell us something weird about yourself…
I have a phobia of buttons since I was really young. I can’t pinpoint exactly how it happened but I think I was with my family in a caravan in New Zealand and the blanket had buttons. (Haha writing this out makes me shudder) But anyway I think I choked on one when I woke up. Since then I hated wearing uniforms with buttons and prefer to wear clothes with zippers 😛
What item of clothing can’t you live without?
A choker haha. I feel like it’s become a big part of my personality since I started wearing them a few years ago.
What items do you make sure you pack on your travels?
DEFFFINITELY my camera. I normally bring my Canon 5D Mark II, the lens, flash and vlog camera.
Who is your style icon and why?
Since I started being interested in fashion and looking at bloggers, Fanny Lyckman‘s style always kills. Her makeup, clothing and attitude is so baddddd.
Where do you look for fashion inspiration?
Recently a lot more on Instagram. When I was in NYC I was inspired by what people wear on the streets but Hong Kong is a bit different (haha) the style is more local and girls love cute Japanese/Korean fashion. I used to be on Tumblr and Pinterest a lot.
What’s your favourite fashion trend this season and why?
Bomber jackets! I’ve been obsessed with bomber jackets for a while but now I especially love the ones with embroidery and made out of satin.
If you could steal anyone’s wardrobe who’s would it be?
I’m obsessed with Ellen V Lora‘s wardrobe! Her style is so curated and relaxed at the same time, I love it.
Wanna know more? Follow Lauren on Insta @engelauren
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