Rosanna Elettra, the iconic gen Z photographer who’s worked with Aitch, Kesha and Central Cee

By Fatou Ferraro Mboup

Updated Jun 13, 2023 at 01:36 PM

Reading time: 4 minutes

Ever wondered who sits behind the camera of some of the most iconic snaps of the entertainment industry’s biggest celebrities? Enter Rosanna Elettra, a visionary force in London’s fashion photography and content creation scene who’s worked with acclaimed artists like Central Cee, Amelia Dimoldenberg, Aitch, and Kesha. At just 25 years old, Elettra has made waves with her innovative approach that blends fashion, music, and film to constantly push the boundaries of creativity.

SCREENSHOT sat down with the young content creator to discuss her impressive journey and get the tea on what it’s like to be rubbing shoulders with some of the biggest names on the London scene and beyond.

 

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A post shared by Rosanna Elettra (@rosannaelettra)

Elettra’s artistic journey began at a remarkably young age. Originally Italian, she first moved to London at the age of 19, but it wasn’t an easy ride. The artist explained how when she first started in the industry it was as a model, which frequently involved dealing with difficult individuals and male photographers who would make her feel highly uncomfortable during shoots. It was this experience that made her realise the importance of representing the female perspective behind the camera.

Elettra explained: “While building my portfolio I very often felt [a victim of the] male gaze from a lot of photographers asking for things I was not very comfortable doing. As a photographer, I strive to create a safe and comfortable environment for my subjects. By establishing a connection and conveying my genuine intentions, I empower them to be themselves and capture their true essence.”

Driven by her own encounters and armed with a deep understanding of what it feels like to be in front of the lens, she set out to create a space where her subjects could feel safe and authentic. Elettra made sure to build a rapport with her subjects even before the shoot began. By prioritising comfort and empowerment, she’s been able to establish an incredibly healing and enjoyable photography experience.

Elettra’s journey to becoming one of London’s most sought-after photographers

Drawing inspiration from Y2K fashion and vintage aesthetics, Elettra has made a name for herself for effortlessly incorporating these same elements into her photography. Describing her style as “flashy and glossy,” she brings a unique blend of nostalgia and contemporary flair to her work.

 

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A post shared by Rosanna Elettra (@rosannaelettra)

One of the things I wanted to talk about during our chat was how Elettra first became involved in the UK celebrity scene, a place she’s now become a fixture on. Believe it or not, the artist’s first brush with fame happened during a late-night hot dog feast at Five Guys.

Exhausted from a night of shooting with Italian rapper Rondo, Elettra received a game-changing DM from model Kai-Isaiah Jamal who, at the time, was represented by Cora Delaney’s agency EYC LTD. They needed her to capture an after-party for rapper Aitch at the fashion hotspot hotel, The Standard. The Getty Images photographer initially booked for that night had fallen ill and couldn’t make the event. So, broken camera in hand, Elettra made her way to the party.

The photographer recalled: “It was almost 11 pm and I thought ‘This is my big chance to prove myself.’ I can’t deny that I was nervous, my original camera was broken and I only had another one ‘half charged, but I think God put me to the test to see whether I was ready or not for what the future would have brought me. I was the only photographer there, and I was shooting Aitch and all his super cool celebrity friends. It really felt like a movie.”

 

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A post shared by Rosanna Elettra (@rosannaelettra)

Against all odds, Elettra’s unbreakable spirit transformed a stroke of misfortune into a catalyst for artistic brilliance. “In this industry, everything is so last minute, you can get a call out of nowhere for a job that will completely change the course of your career. Learn from me, always be prepared to drop whatever you’re doing and start running so you never miss your train. You can only see the bigger picture once you have taken that picture,” Elettra noted.

One of the most impressive aspects of Elettra’s creative process is how she manages to accurately pinpoint her subject’s desires and match them with a location that perfectly fits the concept of the shoot. With an unwavering commitment to authenticity, she weaves together the threads of their vision, intertwining them with the fabric of the surroundings.

Guided by a spirit of spontaneity, Elettra fearlessly ventures into uncharted territory, painting vivid portraits that transcend expectations and capture the raw beauty of the moment. Music also plays a big role in inspiring her vision. Her recent collaboration with Kesha for Dazed in celebration of the singer’s new album cover Gag Order exemplified how she translates music’s energy into vibrant and glamorous photography.

During our conversation, the photographer shared with me how throughout her childhood in Italy, Kesha dominated her beloved iPod’s most-played top tracks. Little did she know that this early connection to Kesha’s sound would eventually intersect with her photography journey.

Reflecting on her past experiences, Elettra admitted that working with such a renowned artist and prestigious magazine provided her with an exhilarating challenge, a chance to showcase her unique photographic style and leave an indelible mark on the industry.

“We played with the space at 180 Studios, which featured a gallery of photos from Kesha’s new album, neon lights, projectors and butcher’s curtains. I loved all the pictures that came out but I have to say that my favourite ones are those next to the butcher’s curtains and the ones with the projections.”

 

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A post shared by By Rosanna Elettra (@elettracreative)

Clearly still coming down from the creative high she felt while working with the ‘TiK ToK’ singer, Elettra continued, “Kesha is popping and glowing through the light of the flash next to the vibrant red of the butcher’s curtains. That’s what I mean when I say my photography is glossy. Look at that glam, she’s a star and I wanted to further enhance her comeback. But the perfect shot for me is the portrait in front of the projections. She is framed by the words taken from her new song’s lyrics, she is surrounded by her craft and in tune with the environment.”

 

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A post shared by By Rosanna Elettra (@elettracreative)

There is no denying the immense talent of Elettra. Her impressive collaborations with industry giants like Netflix and Channel 4, and her role as personal stylist for the American leg of Gorillaz’s world tour last year exemplify her ability to conquer any challenge she encounters. Elettra embodies the belief that with determination and passion, any goal can be within reach.

 

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A post shared by Rosanna Elettra (@rosannaelettra)

The young creative reflected on how some of these projects have helped her: “I had the pleasure of working for an incredible creative director and stylist director, Barbara Ayozie Fu Safira on a diverse range of film projects for industry leaders like Netflix and Channel 4. Being able to learn from her and watch her dedication on set was truly inspiring for me. I had the best mentor I could have dreamt up.”

So, let’s raise our cameras in a toast to Elettra, a true gen Z creative powerhouse who has proven that dreams are meant to be chased, no matter how big they may seem.

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