A Vetements special shot mid lockdown in northern England. Grimsby born and raised Creative director and multi-disciplinary artist Betsy Johnson has cast all local people from the town to photograph and style in the pandemic after returning home and reconnecting with the small fishing town she once craved to leave that she has grown to love.
“A thoroughly working-class town at the end of the motorway in the North East overlooked and forgotten, I wanted to highlight the positives in the town and the community that comes with northern working-class culture especially in a pandemic.
I have wanted to shoot in my hometown for so long. As much as I used to hate it, I have so much to thank Grimsby for. My upbringing there shaped me beyond measure.
Inspired by the local area and trawling through old photo albums from my family who have been in the town for generations, I wanted to channel these images throughout the past 90 years I had access to when I was at home locked down. Shooting a cast of only local people all who have their own stories and feelings about the area I wanted to spotlight local young people.”
NEVE @NEVEEPERRY ASPIRING ACTOR
“To be northern means to feel proud of where I am from and feel comfortable in my own skin no matter where I am.”
MAX @MAXBARNETT SOLDIER / ENTREPRENEUR
“What Grimsby means to me: I love the community of Grimsby, everyone overlooks the talents in the town and focuses on the negative aspects but if you tap into the community of people trying to achieve things, Maybe not all still living in Grimsby day today but still having Grimsby at their heart. then you can all work together to do some really special things.”
LACEY DISKIN HEALTHCARE STUDENT AND MUM
“Living in a small town can limit your perspective of mind if you let it. Leaving you to believe hardly anything exists beyond your small boards.
But Grimsby breeds more than that the harsh realities of life here create the most beautifully unique people charm money can’t buy. Our measure of wealth is based on how rich your soul is. Grimsby to me means that place that holds significance, pride, hope. it means home.”
JEM @JEMSILAS ASPIRING MUSICIAN
“Calling Grimsby home means embracing who I am without the hard pressures the city life has to offer. It means family and community and that is one of the most important things in life. It means fun. Being northern is my pride and joy and being from Grimsby is something I will always hold close to my heart and be proud of. Although we are in a little town, we all have very big hearts.”
SHOLA @SHOLALOFTUS SUPPORT WORKER
“I love being from Grimsby as I love to be near the seaside and it’s a town that’s a close-knit community.”