26 Jan Q&A: CHRIS BURT-ALLAN
Founder of A Stylish Man, Chris Burt-Allan is a force of fashion to be reckoned with. Since his move to Sydney at the end of 2016, I’ve had the privilege of seeing the man in his element: styling, shooting and designing.
Having been in the Fashion industry as a model travelling the world, there’s no doubt Chris has seen it all. He has stories that will make you revel in life’s luxuries, and travel adventures that will give you a serious case of wanderlust.
I have always loved people who can share stories. I remember I’d spend hours listening to my Grandma tell me many when I was young. I’d sit at the end of her bed at her home in Copacabana, asking question after question whilst she attempted to read her latest feel-good novel. She told me about her travels, people she’d met along the way, the crazy things she experienced and many other miscellaneous tales that I was so eager to consume.
Chris Burt-Allan’s stories are clearly evident in his work. There’s always a subject, structure, narrative or reason for everything he does. Every picture posted and every word written has a purpose, which makes his work so rich. I sometimes find myself feeling like an art critic deconstructing his imagery – and I love that! After all, isn’t that what we – as bloggers – aim to do? To create moments that make people stop scrolling to appreciate the creative expression of our style of fashion and our viewpoint for landscapes.
A true natural in front of the camera, Chris also takes control behind the camera – directing a lot of his material too. He knows exactly what he wants on set (or on location in many cases) and works incredibly quick to get the shot. What would normally take me 15 minutes will take him 5. There’s no cutting through his infallible clarity of vision. Even when it comes to suiting, the stylish man himself finds his own fabrics to design and create his very own attire.
Before Chris Burt-Allan jumped on yet another plane, this time to the land of the US of A, I managed to get a hold of him to ask a few questions.
1. How did you get started as a blogger and/or how did it come together?
I have a long history in the fashion/media sphere, from being scouted as a model at a young age. The blogging element came into play after I had some influential people make some comments about my personal style and attitude toward fashion. I always loved the project nature of fashion shoots and decided to start doing my own. I can’t remember what I was thinking when I invested in my first camera because the game has changed so often since then. The whole thing has grown so rapidly and developed hugely; there’s no going back.
2. What has been one of your favourite aspects in our line of work?
How could I pick just one!? The business relationships, the creative freedom, the social relationships, the personal development, the travel, the crazy parties, the unknown, the opportunity. I’m currently on a week-long stopover in LA on my way to New York Fashion Week to meet with several global brands, which speaks volumes about the perks of the job. You know, if you’re into that sort of globe-trotting stuff.
3. Tell me something that not a lot of people know about you? (Could be your party trick, a quirky trait, or a weird extra-curricular activity you do).
Until recently, I worked as a Senior Business Analyst specialising in organisational transformation.
4. Name your top 5 favourite albums OR your top 5 favourite movies.
In no particular (or possible) order: Back to Black by Amy Winehouse, Coexist by The XX, Greatest Hits by The Beatles, If You Wait by London Grammar, Born to Die by Lana Del Ray.
5. What did you want to be when you were a kid?
A landscape architect. I probably considered most jobs that would allow me to be independent and use both sides of my brain!
6. Where is your ultimate travel destination and why?
That changes every time I tick one of them off! Maybe I’ll lump together the major fashion capitals (NY, London, Milan & Paris) because every time I go to one, I build on the success and enjoyment of all previous trips.
7. What’s one guiding tip to anyone wanting to follow in your footsteps?
It depends on what you want to get out of it. Some people do it just for creativity. Some people just want to build a following. Some people just want social connection. I want to make a life of it and if you want to do the same then you need to focus on every facet that you can possibly identify. As with any field, if you want to be the best then you need to be smart, efficient, dedicated and sometimes ruthless.
If you don’t already follow Chris Burt-Allan, there’s no better time than now as he takes on Men’s New York Fashion Week. You can follow in his footsteps on Instagram, Facebook and directly through his blog, A Stylish Man.