What students’ bedrooms reveal about their cultural lives

As part of the Generation Y takeover, we asked some young people to tell us about their personal space, and what it says about them

theguardian.com,              Thursday 20 March 2014 17.48 GMT

Ellie Burns in her bedroom, in Nottingham.Ellie Burns, 18, is doing A-levels in English language, English literature and art at a sixth-form college in Nottingham. “I’ve got a couple of Leeds festival posters. My Bastille poster is stolen; I went to see them and I nicked it on the way out. There’s a lot going on [in my room], it’s a mixture of everything. I’m quite into bright colours and because my room is white and I just wanted to fill it to reflect my personality and the things I like.” Photograph: David Sillitoe for the Guardian

Oscar Lloyd, 16, in his bedroom in Deal, Kent.
Oscar Lloyd, 16, is a secondary-school student from Deal in Kent. “I don’t like new rock music, but I’m really into new electronic music because I do DJing with my friend for parties and stuff.” The guitar leaning against the wall is his brother’s. “I kind of like having it there because it looks cool,” he says. The room is usually much messier, he adds. Photograph: Teri Pengilley for the Guardian
Usman 'Uzzee' Rabiu in his bedroom in London.
Usman Uzzee, 21, is a fashion design student at the London College of Fashion. “I decided to start playing guitar because of my obsession with Metallica, and have been into rock since I was about four or five. My mum [who is in the photograph on his desk] influenced me too. She took me to a concert in Birmingham to watch Steely Dan.”  He got his Jack Russell about a year ago for £80: “I think he was literally the best bargain I’ve ever got.” Photograph: Graeme Robertson for the Guardian
Lekhani Chirwa in her bedroom, in south London.
Lekhani Chirwa, 21, studies drama and performance at London South Bank University and lives in Peckham. “I do have a collection of CDs, but they’re mainly old ones: a lot of Rihanna from when she first started, or Christina Aguilera. I keep the CDs in one of my shoeboxes. Nowadays I tend to download everything from iTunes.” She has a lot of pictures of herself with friends and family: “They’re just a reminder of the good times.” She also has a lot of shoes: “The ones you can see are literally only about a quarter of my shoe collection.” Photograph: Martin Godwin for the Guardian
Philosophy student, Livvie Tadman's bedroom.
Livvie Tadman, 19, is a philosophy student at the University of York. She calls the doll on the bed Anal Annie. “We spotted her in a thrift store during freshers’ week and my new friends bought her for my birthday.” She got the Jay Z poster on the wall from a club night. “I was really drunk and I begged the bouncer to let me take the poster, and at the end of the night he let me.” Photograph: Gary Calton for the Guardian
Rosie Parry in her bedroom in south London.
Rosie Parry, 19, is an English and creative-writing student at Goldsmiths College, London. The sign on the wardrobe came from a play she saw with a friend. “It was a monologue about a guy who chops off his arm, or eats it or something. Anyway, he made that sign during the play and gave it to me.” Her little sister painted the Rolling Stones tongue for her as a gift before she left for university. Photograph: David Levene for the Guardian
Dorothy Dunn in her bedroom in London.
Dorothy Dunn, 21, lives in Herne Hill, south London, and will start an MA in comparative literature at Goldsmiths College  in September. “I’ve got quite a lot of Jack Kerouac books here from my dissertation. Also I really like Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys.” The room used to belong to her sister Alice. “She wrote ‘Beyoncé’ in felt-tip on the wall and I’ve still got it on there. I’ve put a picture over it.” Photograph: Martin Godwin for the Guardian

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