How Being "Rebellious And Lazy" Paved The Way For This Creative Pioneer

 
"College was the worst."

"College was the worst."

Photographer and fashion creative Garance Doré followed a meandering path on her way to becoming a pioneer of the street style movement. But then, she left it all behind. Find out why in this week's episode of Girlboss Radio.

Garance Doré was never going to be one for following the rules. Born on Corsica, a French island in the Mediterranean, Doré describes the culture in which she was raised as “very rebellious and also lazy,” she muses on the newest episode of Girlboss Radio. “[Corsicans] like to take naps,” she adds fondly.

But that laid-back style of living was never something to which Doré really took. As a restless teenager, the illustrator turned photographer turned street style pioneer didn’t know what she wanted, so much as what she didn’t want. Despite being a stellar student, Doré knew that all she wanted was to be an artist. She ended up bailing on her last year of school. This exchange pretty much sums it up:

“Did [studying communications at university] help you at all with what you’re doing today?” Sophia asks. 

“Not at all.”

“Did you enjoy college?”

“It was the worst.”

“Did you graduate?”

“Barely.”

Despite her fears of disappointing her family, Doré quit the stable job she had post-university and decided to just go for it. “I did what [my family] wanted until I was 27, so pretty late. But that’s when I was like, ‘Fuck it. I’m going to die if I don’t try to be an artist,’” she recalls

She began to land a few poor-paying illustration jobs, but she soon realized how unsustainable it was. And it was out of this frustration that she eventually launched her blog, where she held herself to a standard of three posts a week, none of which were allowed to take her more than an hour. 

As basic as that regimen seemed, it was the catalyst that eventually led to her gaining some traction. And it was at this point she learned another lesson that would be pivotal in her career: People take you more seriously if they think you’re from Paris. 

And so after changing her name (she was born Mariline Fiori) and pretending for months that she lived in the city, she finally moved there, where she started taking photos out of a desire to document all the “cool girls” she saw every day. (That legendary “French girl style” sows admiration even among French girls, as it turns out.)

Doré never set out to be one of the foremothers of street style photography and fashion bloggers, but her natural curiosity lent itself perfectly. She started attending Fashion Weeks all over, garnering more and more traction on her blog, with show attendees essentially chasing after her to get her to take their photos at a certain point.

Which was all well and good, until it wasn’t. After years on the circuit, Doré eventually experienced extreme burnout. In the episode below, Sophia and Garance dive into the messy business of extracting oneself from the industry that "made you," what it’s like to keep exploring your talents and transition accordingly, and the bullshit pressure society places on women when it comes to the issue of childbearing. 

Listen to the full episode below:

On wrestling with self-doubt yesterday, today, and tomorrow:

“I’ve been struggling so much all my life with that pressure to be 'accomplished,' whatever the fuck that means.”

On the chilled-out definition of “success” she’s found later in her career:

“To me, success is that sense of healing myself and finding out why I’m here.”

On having a complicated personality:

“I’m very patient. I’m very soft and all that, but when something drives me crazy, I just explode.”

On that ever-illusive work-life balance:

"What I want to be is happy. I want to be creative, I want to have nice friendships. Work, for me is a part of that—it should be happy."

Girlboss Radio debuts a new episode every Wednesday, at midnight PDT. Tune in!

Words: Deena Drewis
Photo: Courtesy/Composite