Alys is an editorial and fine art documentary photographer based in London.

Alys grew up in Brighton and studied English Literature and Communications at the University of Leeds. After graduating, she moved to New York for a year and was given her first commission for Time Out, before returning to London to study photography at Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design. She recently completed a part-time MA in Anthropology of Travel, Tourism and Pilgrimage (Distinction) at SOAS, University of London, which ties in with her long-term, personal project about pilgrimage.

Her book Ex-Voto was published by GOST Books in 2019 and Lost Summer was self-published in 2020. Alys combines commissioned work for editorial, design and advertising clients with personal work, which she publishes and exhibits. Alys is currently working on a feature-length documentary film called Mother Vera which she is co-directing with Cécile Embleton. Her latest project Gli Isolani (The Islanders) was published by GOST Books in autumn 2022.

Alys’s work is collected privately and is in the following collections: National Portrait Gallery (London), The Rencontres d’Arles Collection, The Bodleian Library

Alys is represented by HackelBury Fine Art, London

Since 2022 Alys has been an ambassador for Wex Photo Video working closely with them on their #ChangeTheImage campaign.

Awards & Grants

2023 Locarno Film Festival, Creativity Media First Look Award
2021 Hot Docs Forum, Pitch Prize, 2nd Place (Mother Vera)
2020 Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize, 1st Prize Winner
2020 Sundance Institute, Documentary Fund Grantee
2020 Prix Elysée, Musée de l’Elysée, Nominee
2019 Meitar Award for Excellence in Photography, Finalist
2019 Hariban Award, Finalist (Honourable Mention)
2019 Winner of the Public Prize, Rencontres d’Arles, Discovery Award
2019 Prix de la Photo Madame Figaro Arles, Shortlist
2019 Rencontres d’Arles, Louis Roederer Discovery Award, Shortlist
2018 Royal Photographic Society IPE 161 – Silver Award
2018 Sony World Photographer of the Year, overall winner
2018 Sony Professional Grant recipient
2018 BJP/International Photography Award, Shortlist
2018 Sony World Photography Awards, 1st Place (Discovery Category)
2017 Taylor Wessing Portrait Prize, National Portrait Gallery
2017 Hotshoe Award/Renaissance Photography Prize, Winner
2017 Renaissance Photography Prize, Finalist (series)
2016 SOAS Departmental Prize (Anthropology and Sociology)
2016 London International Creative Competition, Honourable Mention
2016 Tri-pod/Photofusion Award, Winner
2016 Renaissance Photography Prize, Finalist (series)
2012 Creative Review Photography Annual
2010 Creative Review Photography Annual
2008 PX3 Prix de la Photographie Paris, Honourable Mention
2008 Magenta Foundation/Flash Forward, Winner
2007 PX3 Prix de la Photographie Paris, Honourable Mention
2007 PDN 30, emerging photographers selected by Photo District News
2006 International Photography Awards (Lucie), Honourable Mention
2006 Arts Council England, Grant for Individuals
2005 London Photographic Awards, Winner
2003 Jerwood Photography Award, Shortlisted
2003 Observer Hodge Award, Highly Commended
2003 Peter Kirk Memorial Travel Scholarship
2002 EXIT Magazine, New Talent Award Winner


2022 ‘Gli Isolani (The Islanders) HackelBury Fine Art, London
2021 ‘Youth Rising in the UK’ Side Gallery, Newcastle
2020 Jinan Biennale, Shandong Art Museum, China
2020 Nuit de la Photo, La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland
2019 ‘The Faithful’ Les Rencontres d’Arles, France (solo exhibition)
2019 ‘Ex-Voto’ Side Gallery, Newcastle (solo exhibition)
2019 ‘Ex-Voto’ HackelBury Fine Art, London (solo exhibition)
2019 ‘Ex-Voto’ Chichester Cathedral, West Sussex (solo exhibition)
2018 Sony World Photography Awards, Somerset House, London
2017 Taylor Wessing Portrait Prize, National Portrait Gallery, London
2017 Made in Brixton, Photofusion, London
2016 Portrait Salon, London
2015 Uncertain States Annual, London (Photomonth)
2015 Emerging, Annenberg Space for Photography, Los Angeles, USA
2014 Les Rencontres d’Arles Book Award exhibition, Arles, France
2013 Salon/13 Photofusion, London
2013 ‘24’ Berkeley Square, London
2012 Portrait Salon, London
2010 ‘Open Here’ Hereford Photography Festival
2010 Foto 8 Summer Show, HOST Gallery, London
2010 ‘Why We Love Photography’ HOST Gallery, London
2009 ‘Manual Focus’ The Lloyd Gill Gallery, Somerset
2008 ’24′ The AOP Gallery, London
2006 ‘Stop Moving’ Photodebut Exhibition, London
2006 ‘Film on Film’ The AOP Gallery, London
2006 ‘Dead Time’ Swiss Cottage Gallery, London (solo exhibition)
2006 ‘Petites Morts’ The Glasshouse Gallery, London
2005 ‘Portfolio’ The AOP Gallery, London
2004 ’3′ Deluxe Gallery, London
2003 Exposure: Hereford Photography Festival
2003 The Observer Hodge Photographic Award, The Newsroom, London


Visiting lecturer at Central Saint Martins (UAL) and Ravensbourne College of Art & Design.

2018 ‘Landscapes of pilgrimage and figures of pilgrims: an essay in location and discloation’ paper presented at Art, Materiality and Representation conference at The British Museum/SOAS.
2016 ‘Developing the image: re-­evaluating contemporary photographic practice’ paper presented at Photography in Academic Research conference, UCL.
2014  ‘Pilgrims and passers-by, a photographer’s perspective: anthropological approaches in fine art and documentary photography practice‘ paper presented at Anthropology and Photography conference, The British Museum.

Clients include:

3 Monkeys Communications, Action for Children, Agile Media, Apps For Good, Airbnb, ARK Schools, Attic Media, August Media, Barton Willmore, Baxter and Bailey, BBC, Bloomsbury Publishing, Bompas and Parr, Brand Communications UK, Brickworks London, BusbyWebb, CABE, Cambridge University, CDT Design, Chivas, The Communications Store, Condé Nast, Diageo, EDF (Electricité de France), ENO Baylis, Fleet Street Communications, The Gin Guild, Glamour, 
The Guardian, Harvey Nichols, House and Garden, I-AM, Imagist, Ink Publishing, Intercontinental Hotels, John Brown Publishing, Johnson Banks, Le Monde, London School of Pharmacy, LSO, Microsoft, Nokia, Odd Firm of Sin,
 Penguin Books, Royal Academy of Arts, Royal College of Art, Seven Publishing,
 Shrewsbury House Trust, Small Back Room, Son Records, Specialist Schools Trust, Spitalfields Festival, Stanton Williams, The TES, TBA plc, Time Out, True North, UKADIA, University of the Arts London