24 October - Tropical Heat

I'm not sure if I am just feeling nostalgia or a homesickness for the familiar,
having grown up on a Caribbean island for most of my life. So when this shoot
was planned a few months before, inspired by the model's (Tara of Dallys) exotic beauty,
I wanted to bring some references to my childhood, what surrounded me:-
Particularly, the lush tropical vegetation and aquamarine seas. In my family home,
our garden was always full of different varieties of bouganvilleas and I can't begin
to tell you how many types we had from the variegated leaves to the variegated
flowers you can find in some bouganvilleas. My Granny had about 6 different colours
growing around our house and we had this one big cascading bush of about 3 colours
mixed together, all growing into the other, that we often used to stand there for our
family pictures. So too are the heliconia flowers so inconic of my homeland
of Trinidad and Tobago as in fact the "balisier" or the heliconia bihai is the symbol
of one of the oldest political parties, the PNM party, which has dominated the
political landscape of Trinidad and Tobago.

So drawing on those influences and that of coral, which I am slightly obsessed
about (to be honest), wanted to inject those vivid red and orange hues in striking
contrast to the azure blue hues of the Gold Coast waters.

So despite having set the date of this shoot a few months before, on
what we thought would be a quiet Monday in Spring, turned out to be
a busy beach day as it was a "Pupil Free Day" and so lots of families had
occupied the beach. I almost had a panic on the drive to the beach, when it had
hit me that school was out for that day and might have to contend with
a crowded beach. But the show must go on, and we made it work to our
best advantage. Although, Tara did manage to attract a group of teen boys
openly gauking at her especially when she was discretly changing in and out
of swimsuits. And they weren't hiding the fact that they were watching her,
which made it slightly more uncomfortable for us.

So we rocked up to the beach about 10.30 and started shooting right away
and wrapped up by 2.30pm. It was a pretty cruisy day, we weren't feeling
rushed, which was great. We had Alana's kids with us, all 3 of them because
it was a "pupil free day" remember. But thankfully, Grandma came along to
supervise the kids while Alana and I worked our magic together on the
stunningly beautiful and sweet Tara.

I might have gone a tad overboard on the scale and proportion of
bouganvilleas in my floral chain, but had to quickly rush them
together a few hours before the shoot, so they wouldn't be limp
by the time we shot them on the beach.

So here are some of what we shot that day, with some behind the scenes
and candid outtakes of Tara, mostly of her beautiful smile, which I can't
get enough of......she is just a gorgeous woman inside and out.

So thank you team for a brilliant day spent on the beach:-

Model/ Muse - Tara Speck of Dallys Model Management
Makeup Artist & Hairstylist - Alana Mevissen
Assistants - The Mevissen Kids Crew
Photographer - Katriena Emmanuel
Heliconias supplied by Tugun Fruit and Flowers

Also thanks to local eyewear designer Kayu Sunglasses
known for their bamboo designs, featured here were "Ice"
and "Sahara"

We wrapped up shooting, just put the lens cap back on and Tara goes "ahhhh" time to relax and sleep, as modelling is
truly hard work, so of course, I couldn't resist not snapping a shot of her being silly pretending to sleep after the shoot.


#beach #swimwear #spring #flora #fauna #tropical #islandlife #katrienaemmanuel #swim #kayusunglasses


13 October - "ORANGE CRUSH"

Maybe I'm subconsciously exploring colour as a series, I'm not sure really.
Following on to my last personal blog entry "Code Red", I present to you here
"Orange Crush" in which I was inspired by a bag of oranges, inclusive of the net

I often get random thoughts of inspiration that pop into my head. Sometimes,
I choose to wait until all the ducks are lined up to perfectly execute them.
Other times, like this series, I feel confident enough in myself to just pull it
off by myself, often cause of impatient urge to create and release into
the world of thoughts, ideas and creativity.

Honestly, when I do shoots like this when its just me and the model, I feel
the most free, limitless. Working in big teams are great fun, they have their
advantages, mainly the combining of heads to create, sharing the responsibilities
and the comradery. But to be honest, one thing I find I personally lack when I'm
surrounded by a big creative team, is just that centered focus, that intimacy
of shared space with just me and my subject/ model to create and spontaneously

create without any restrictions like "make sure the designer's thingy is
in clear view for the shot" or "this has to be kept in line with this magazine's
aesthetic". Basically, I have no rules when its just me and the model working
together. We mostly make it up as we go along the storyline I have
devised for us that day and we just create for the pure fun of it
and for us, not to fit in or please any client, magazine or anybody.

So years ago I kept a few net bags from my fruit and the hoarder that
I am, in keeping everything "because one day I might be able to use
this in a shoot", well that day finally came for these netted bags.

The bags were orange and probably years ago when I bought them, they
once carried oranges. Inspired by the colour and threading of the netting
I thought to myself, oranges! So I dug up in my fridge and pulled out some
oranges to eat and use the rind to make the textures to go onto the face.
And so birthed my "Orange Crush" beauty series, complete with
orange juice tears, orange rind eyelashes and brows and styled that
net bag over the face.

I wanted to keep this series fairly raw looking, so as it was just me and the
model Lily, who so happens to have freckly skin, I thought it just couldn't
get better with that added colour and texture in her skin. Freckles often
lend themselves a slight orange hue in themselves. So perfect.

For that extra highlights/ shine to the skin I used coconut oil and only
actual cosmetic product I used was a Chi Chi lipstick I had in "feme fatal".
On the day of the shoot, I was thinking through in my head the looks
I can create to thread this orange story together and I thought orange juice
spilling over her face, and then I was like "tears of orange juice". So I started
to think I need something like a dropper to drop the juice from her eyes.
So while I was running through in my head all the nonsense I possibly hoard
in my cupboards, only thing I could think of with a dropper that popped into
my head, was the rose hip oil I use on my daughter's eczema skin. Then,
it occurred to me, to use rose hip oil instead of actual orange juice, as it
would probably be slower to run off than the juice and more of a concentrated
gold colour. So there you have it my orange juice tears of rose hip oil.

My model/ muse Lily K of Busy Models, is just 16 but for someone so
young she showed great emotional range getting stuck right into the
character I gave her while I did my shenanigans on her face.
There definitely has to be a level of trust between model and photographer.
So thank you Lily for trusting me on this one, considering last time we shot
together, I force fed you confetti and glitter. Oops, sorry! At least this time
I gave Lily something actually healthy and edible haha.

Creative Direction & Photography: Katriena Emmanuel
Model/ Muse: Lily K of Busy Models


#beauty #beautyseries #oranges #orangecrush #beautyphotographer #beautyphotography #freckles #katrienaemmanuel



7 October - "SERENITY" for JUTE

Excited to finally share a futuristic inspired fashion story for the Minimalism issue of Jute
magazine for their October issue.

I had an ace team with Alyssa Selin styling and Carla Sakrzewski on makeup and Aleesha
Darke styling the hair. We had two fab models from Dallys Model Management, Britney Ross
and Alexandra Pruchniewicz.

Here is what we got up to featuring some amazing Australian designers
like Michelle Dwight, Amber Chloe, Bo & AROPAX and jewellery designers Luke Maninov and
SEON-IM YOU and New Zealand designer Jorge Adrian Alfaro.

For this story I really wanted that glowing luminious light engulfing the models, as for me
anything sci-fi oriented or futuristic I always imagine with that cyrogenic glowing light.
There is a coherent minimalism in the styling but with great attention to detail, as there are
elements in each of the designers' works featured that point to something chemical,
biological and neuroscientific. After looking at the images we captured on the day, the only
way I could describe them was being a sense of serenity which has a double connotation
also referencing a sci-fi movie of the same name. In a sense, I am happy they took that
direction of emotion, as it's my hope for the future, that we all reach a collective
consciousness and find that serenity within ourselves that we have been looking for
all our lives.

The future is unknown, we only have the now. Let go of your concerns, worries and
fears of what is unknown and yet to exist, because at the end of the day everything
that happens to us, is a fleeting moment, nothing is permanent, we are all in states
of transition.

Hope this series brings a sense of calmness as your eyes feast over them.


#serenity #scifi #futuristicfashion #editorial #jutemagazine #katrienaemmanuel





(c) copyright Katriena Emmanuel Photography Pty Ltd all rights reserved