a year in review, 2020 edition
what a friggin' rollercoaster...
It started with fires from hell, and passionate love stories...
I spent the new year's eve helping my good friend and colleague Hannah Gilbert to photograph a wedding, all while her home and her parents in the Alpine country of Buchan were getting dangerously surrounded by the dangerous bushfires. That night Hannah lost her family home, and only received news from her parent's well-being the next day. She still showed up at the wedding, and pulled it off with AMAZING photos. This woman is a legend, and I was glad to start the new year with her.
Then, the 10th it was Katja and Chris' wedding in Toorongo River. It was a lovely overcast day, away from the smoke of the burnt areas of Gippsland, and full of love and smiles.
Creative refresh, a red Valentine's day and a mountain elopement
February started after my annual break. I spend this annual break in the place I cherish the most here, Phillip Island. It reminds me of home, of Brittany, of la Cote Sauvage near Quiberon; with on one side the calm bay and the other the surf worthy ocean. I come back from it fully refreshed and full of creative ideas. So usually, I organise styled shoots or editorials. Purely for my own creative input / output. Two shoots emerged from this, at the beach with Anna, and one in Melbourne with the collab of rad vendors, featuring Cathleen Jia. For these shoots, I really wanted to explore some techniques on film / analog style, that I will later on embrace completely. The beach shoot was featured in print in Gippslandia.
Then, I captured Ashabella and Tobe's intimate Under the moon mountain elopement. This elopement was beautiful, and I was very happy for it to be featured on Ivory Tribe.
On valentine's day, I met with Hannah again to capture Katie + Dean's wedding. I was on the videography side (and second shooting) and Hannah was on the photography. This wedding was what any cool romantic would ever dream of. A Valentine's day done right.
FEbruary - MARCH
"Together we can take it to the end of the line"
Oblivious to the pandemic - yet- , we partied, danced, kissed, laughed and love at power 30000.
It will happen to be my busiest month of the year (which should have been November). I danced with Deejy and Chris, capturing 'ripping the pants' worthy moves - literally - and met Andrew, the 1/2 from Bottlebrush Films (turns out he doesn't drink coffee and owes me $4). It was rad. I loved that day sooo much. Together Journal featured it, and I am so happy it will remain there forever for us to relive the day.
Then I captured the love of Sarah + James at Duart homestead, Melanie + Robbie in Mewburn Park, Maddy + Ryan at Under the Moon.
April - May - lockdown...
When life takes away the lemons, eat cornflakes and watch movies.
That's it. Covid-19. Right in the thick of it.
We were going to Europe for 6 weeks; I was going to photograph a wedding in Paris, see my family that I hadn't seen in 5 years, visit Andalucia in Spain... but Covid-19 happened.
And so did remote learning with kinder and primary school kids at home. To try and keep us entertained AND keeping creative; we started to re-create famous artworks, at home. Going on scavenger hunts at home to find props, working on the light, studying Caravaggio. It was as fun as lemonade.
When the kids were in bed, I decided to host a monthly movie night with friends in the industry who also were deeply affected by the lack of work. Nathan, Corina and Dylan (who also baked a beautiful baby at the time) I think enjoyed it... or maybe they are just being polite. Let's do that again!
Reconnecting with my passion.
During lockdown, between the kids constant nagging for food (what is it with them wanting to eat snack all.the.time? Oh yeah that's right, they get that from their mother), and baking croissants; I had a bit of revelation. I realised that my passion for cinematography (how my love for photography started actually), really infiltrated my photography work. Even and especially on weddings.
I realised that the composition of the photos I take, knowingly and very often un-knowingly were influenced by movies. I started looking into it more deeply, and found similarity. Sometimes because I did it on purpose, but more often because I did not.
How much does my work is influenced by cinematography?
I studied cinema theory , but haven't done so for years, yet, I still found that it is very much present.
With this in mind, I started to think that maybe it was interesting to explore this cinematography style in parallel with weddings. So I started a 'Movie Lovers' story on my instagram, and wrote more deeply about cinema on my journal.
In between lockdowns.
A wedding at home with Harry and Mim. 5 guests rule. The got married the day before, with the kids, the celebrant and them. I came the next day to photograph their 'wedding', just the three of us. They got ready together, read vows, then we took photos and chilled out.
We took our time, listening to Harry playing piano with his wife, while I browsed the cool collection of vinyls.
And you can see this unique, lockdown session on Together Journal!
September - october
open the doors, let's go on an adventure
Once the lockdown restrictions were somewhat lifted, I was just really keen to get back out capturing people. Fortunately, I had loads of commercial work (see my commercial work here) that helped me get back doing what I love and made me go on adventures.
I also took the opportunity of the restrictions lift to sneak editorial photo session at the Lake with Klaire from The Huntress & Co, and at the new venue Amarti. On both, I tried to explore mimicking the analog photos look, but on a digital camera.
A aspect I also explored while doing a fashion feature for Gippslandia magazine. Taking inspiration in cinematic composition and looks, again.
the end of the f*cked up year
I finished the year in a bang with Jodie and Kaitlyn's elopement, Natasha and Dion bridal session and Jessica and Jesse's vineyard wedding.
The first two were still under tough restrictions with number of guests allowed, so both were short sessions, and with limited people.
For Jodie and Kaitlyn. it was just the 5 of us (Ash from Under the Moon, Evie the celebrant, and myself).
For Natasha and Dion, it was us meeting at the Botanical Gardens in Melbourne for a 2hr bridal portraits session (because I couldn't attend the ceremony who already had the max cap. of guests). It was lovely too to do it this way.
Finally, Jesse and Jessica's wedding was back to the 'normal' ways of celebrating weddings. Full day, with around 80 guests at Tom's Cap winery. I must say, it feels good to be back.
What the year 2020 taught me was to be more patient, be kinder, take the time to do what I love, really (like studying cinema, again). It taught us that weddings really don't need to be a GRAND affair, it can be just as beautiful with just with 5 people. It taught us to see what really matters, to be grateful for what we do have, and be to be more fierce in the fight against discrimination. Let's not forget that either. 2021 is going to be kind, let's look forward to that.