A Day in the Life: Petra Collins

I am so smitten with Petra Collins! Petra is a 19 year old photographer from Toronto. Her beautiful photographs of young girls are simultaneously innocent and erotic–a combination that sometimes makes you feel kind of weird inside, but in the best way possible. Serious Lolita vibes! Petra shoots for mags like Vice and Jacques, and is also a staff member at the amazing Rookie Magazine, the teen magazine for girls started by Tavi Gevinson. Plus Petra is the founder and curator of The Ardorous, an online art collective showcasing the works of young, female artists. And if it’s not already impressive enough that she’s done all of that while still in her teens, she’s also really smart and funny and dresses amazingly and is so beautiful and cool and… damn, the girl really is the whole package. Below is a day in her life.

Hello friends, my name is Petra Collins. On this day I did a photoshoot for Rookie Mag called Come Sail Away. The shoot was pretty much my ultimate dream – I got to create my own high school dance. I shot it in my old high school, which my sister still goes to. She brought along all her super cute girl and guy friends, they dressed up in cute clothes, I shot them making out, everyone danced, we listened to Sean Paul, they ate cupcakes, Cheetohs, and pop. It was a pretty fun day.

The girls bathroom. Eerie as fuck.

The super pretty accessories Chloe brought to the shoot.

CUPCAKES! The night before the shoot my boyfriend Avery took me to Costco and bought me so many snacks to photograph (eat).

Me and my sister’s friend Feli. ( I had to make a cameo because I NEEDED to attend the dance of my dreams!)

Chloe, Anna and the boys getting really hyper – the boys went into the gym supply closet and stole a basketball, which totally stressed me out because it almost landed on the food table like twice.

Chloe smearing her make-up for her “Miss World” moment.

The food table after the shoot – ravaged.

Anna, my sister, after the shoot. She’s stressing out because we had so much to clean up.



7 Replies to “A Day in the Life: Petra Collins”

  1. i don’t get this. like, at all. i am older and maybe that is why. i don’t get the whole tavi generation. i don’t get it when a high school girl’s bathroom is creepy. i have been to actual real creepy places and it didn’t look anything like that. revisiting a fake prom doesn’t do anything for me either. i guess we really do change as we get older. but, you know, i didn’t go to my prom, i skipped out and went to see the rock concert across the street and then partied all night in the hotel. this life picture these today kids paint is so seemingly EASY. and, for me, this is hard to watch knowing how hard other people have it in the world. i like to see gritty real life, not fantasy of an innocent teen-age dream that isn’t hardly close to the stone-cold reality of the common people. give all those girls very large doses of LSD or some other drug and take pictures of that. now that is something i would like to see. this is BORING, unexciting, and a waste of my time. but wait, it did help me to express myself and to write out what i am thinking, so thanks.

    1. if this is so boring and tasteless to you then what reason exactly do you even have to leave such a BORING, yawn-worthy comment about how much you don’t like it? I could take giving critique but that’s just outright whining about things that you don’t like existing, I would assume that such concepts exist for everyone and are not things which need to be chided about to an uninterested audience. Go play outside or something.

    2. i agree with rock concerts, hotels and large amounts of acid. but the walls that divide peoples’ worlds have some clues written on them if you shut yo face and observe.

  2. My senior prom consisted of a hand- job under the table and film containers filled with assorted booze. Whats wrong with kids today? I guess the answer is they don’t have film containers.

    At least when we pulled the boys bathroom mirror off the wall it wasn’t to clean it!

  3. Dude, the point you make is pathetic. Yes, your youth was extremely different and “hardcore” as fuck and hers was different, too. If you really feel that passionately about your teenage years, come back to us with a photo shoot that is aesthetically pleasing and nostalgic as Petra’s work.

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