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Interview: Frankie Boyle (the cooler one)

We catch up with creative light designer Frankie Boyle. Known for her imaginative light installations for brands such as Campari, Arcadia at Glastonbury, Burberry and Samsung.

Frankie Boyle Light Creative Interview

Check out her love of lights below:

1. So, tell us a bit about yourself, how did you become a Light Designer / Artist

Well, I think it all stems back to when I was diagnosed with a developmental language disorder ( DLD) at the age of 7 and I became a bit of a science experiment for around 2 years, with doctors and research specialists analysing me every two weeks.  Basically, I really struggled with processing language so my communication with people was to use environment and colour. I always had a subconscious lean towards lighting as I noticed it created different emotions in people. From there my fascination with lighting grew, along with me electrocuting myself!  When I finally started to understand the power and magic of it, I started designing and creating weird and wonderful things! 

2. For any of our readers that would like to get into your profession, what advice would you give to them?

For me, it starts with passion, then really listening and talking to as many people that inspire you as possible. Learning from others is the best thing you can do.  People work with others who they respect, trust and have a good rapport with. I came from a hospitality background so it took a while to shake off the ‘yes sir, no sir’ thing! Haha, I came across way too proper!   

3. Did you consider a different career path at any point in your journey so far?

I was brought up as a chef because my parents own and run an outside catering company. I loved cooking but my Dad said you kiss goodbye to your weekends so advised me against it. Little did I realise you do in this industry as well!! 

4. Where do you find your inspiration for your pieces?

In today’s world we are being overwhelmed by screens, everyone is staring into a 2D image of a 3D space. We hunger for escapism and to be entertained, which is the essence of Instagram. So instead of looking at a screen, I love being able to put people in a space where they can turn their head and feel immersed. Even if it’s just for a few seconds, those seconds help us to breathe and be present in today’s world. Using simple lighting technology if used in the right way, can have a huge impact on us and how we feel and interact within the space, this idea is what inspires me the most.

5. An obvious question from a lesbian magazine, are you seeing anyone at the moment? 

Lol, no, my work-life balance is not good at all, needs to be improved!

6. Who are your role models and why?

My mum for being wonder woman and dealing with bridezillas all day, every day as a wedding planner and still staying so calm! Es Devlin for being a superwoman within this industry and ‘The Guilty Feminist’ podcast crew! All of them are so inspiring, funny and energetic, hard not to be blown away! 

7. East London or West London? 


8. Out of all of your pieces of work, which piece did you enjoy the most?

Umm tricky one, I have wonderful, crazy, hilarious memories of so many!
Most satisfying  – was the Galaxy Studio for Samsung working for Refinery 29. Creating a field of fibre optic that converted your heartbeat into a beautiful light show. It was tactile, calming and allowed you to escape into another world!

Biggest design solving project – Designing and building a 1.5-meter in diameter solitaire diamond for a big jewellery brand and installing it in South Korea, not only did each face of 58 faces have 3 different angles needing to be cut, but doing all of this with a language barrier definitely made things interesting!

The loudest – Using real-life explosives within the costumes for Aitor Throup fashion show New object research. 

Most anxiety-driven project –  When I was working freelance for a lighting company. We created 3 massive LED pixel mapped jellyfish costumes worn by aerial performers for Arcadia Spectacular at Glastonbury this was mental but great fun!

9. If you could use a magic telephone to call yourself at 15 years old what would you say?

Not to worry about what other people think of you stay true to yourself. .. and start meditating!! Haha! My god I wish I found this earlier!

10. What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?

Besides to meditate!? Lots of people always said to be yourself. I never knew what this meant as we always adapt when talking to different people. But as soon as I started showing people my passion and excitement for crazy ideas people became a lot more receptive. So in essence, show people your passion and what makes you tick. There is nothing more engaging than when you talk to someone who gets excited about what they do!

11. Talk us through your average working day?

Well, it depends. If I am in the middle of a project they usually involve me being stuck in a dark dungeon with a soldering iron! But day to day: Bedroom floor Pilates! – coffee – studio – putting weird collections of things in front of light – running around London for meetings – EMAILS – and then hopefully the pub!

12. Who’s your favourite artist at the moment and why?

Olafur Eliasson. I saw his documentary the other day on Netflix and fell in love! It was both frustrating, as he was saying everything that I have been saying recently, and super exciting as I felt a huge contention to what he was saying. It proves when you love what you do it can excite the people around you. Also cool we were both on the same wavelength of light!

13. What do you think of the Lesbian scene in London?

Not going to lie… I think it’s fairly rubbish, even the other day we nearly got turned away from G.A.Y late because they thought we were straight.

14. Who’s your celebrity crush and why?

Umm think it would have to be Jodie Comer who plays Villanelle in Killing Eve! So good! 

15. Where can we see your work, and when’s your next installation?

Potentially next stop will be Milan – stay tuned.

Thanks for chatting to us Frankie,


Nonchalant x

Nonchalant Magazine
Nonchalant Magazine

This article was written by one of our creative team writers here at Nonchalant Magazine.

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