Friday, June 28, 2013

Meg's Makeover

So, one day - I got this adorable email from a lovely lady called Erika:

My best friend Meg's birthday is coming up, and I wanted to get her a mini photoshoot! Her partner has got her a makeover and day at the spa, but I also know he will be proposing to her that night at dinner.  Meg has also spent a year loosing 14kg! I want her to know how lovely she is, and capture her special day.  She doesn't need unlimited photos, just a mini session to remind her how beautiful she is. Anything you could do to make this birthday unforgettable would be MUCH appreciated.

I just thought this was the cutest story I had ever heard, and I just had to be involved. It actually took about 3 months to organise - Meg and Erika are ICU nurses - so organising the makeover, photo shoot and shift schedules took a wee bit of time.
 In that long meantime, Meg actually got engaged but a special dinner out was a good excuse for a vintage style makeover at Rita Sue in Point Chevalier AND an extra!

I must say, Meg was a little bewildered at my unexpected arrival. But, the best thing we could do is head next door for a cocktail, chat like old friends and throughout I managed to put her in one of my coats (thanks Mrs. Moore) and sneak in a few portraits. 

Meg looks completely stunning!

Levon, Meg's proud fiance came to pick her up and we squeezed in a couple of shots of the extremely happy couple before they went home to change for their fancy night out.

What a lovely start to the weekend! Big thanks to Erika for the organising and to Meg and Levon for being wonderful models.

Thursday, June 27, 2013


When I was in Christchurch, I was able to visit a bunch of old motels which are waiting to be repaired after the earthquake. In the meantime, each room is filled with utilities awaiting to be used again.

Walking through some of these rooms, was like being at Puzzling World in Wanaka. 
Balls would roll around the uneven floor. 
In the two pictures below, I photographed these from the straightest angle possible - the skewed perspective shows how much less than a minute of shaking warped these rooms.

 Spaces are left unused and fungi fills in the cracks.

 The liquefaction has made its own swamp.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Red Zone

Over the weekend I visited Christchurch for the first time since the beginning of 2010 and I took some photographs through the blurry bus windows. We drove through the red zone on a very cold, dreary day. Stopped clocks, toppled steeples, and empty lots smudged my memories of a city I had visited often.
I constantly had flashes of finding treasures at Gertie's vintage, visting COCA, the Art Gallery and High Street Project, drinking coffee at C1 and even almost having epileptic fits at the bright and loud mega Supre (before Dunedin was graced with one.) 
I am grateful that I could see and acknowledge what I have only seen through a screen and heard through stories over the past two and a half years - and it still doesn't seem real.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Raetahi in Riff Raff Magazine

Not only is Riff Raff named after one of my favourite movie characters ever - it is the name of a wonderful little magazine.
Based in Hamilton, New Zealand Riff Raff is an magazine dedicated to celebrating the creative people and sharing their projects. Riff Raff provides a place for students and local Hamiltonians to share with the community their creative endeavours. The publication features a diverse range of contributors and draws attention to Hamilton’s artistic community.

Last year, I visited and posted on Harrow Kimchi about my visit to Raetahi. I really enjoyed revisiting the images I took, matching the images in pairs and telling a more considered story. I also included the comments that were featured in my blog, as I found each one extremely interesting - each commenter took something completely different away from the post and they have been left to tell the story to Riff Raff readers.

Here are some very low quality iPhone photos - cover illustration by Katie Rose.

PS. I hold a true love in my heart for Hamilton, as they are truly dedicated to the Rocky Horror Picture Show. One of my favourite websites in the world, is the 24 hour Riff Raff cam - where at any time, you can watch the activities around the Riff Raff statue on Hamilton's main street.

PPS. You can buy Riff Raff Magazine from ArtsPost.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Bob & Ruth's Wedding - Part 1

You may have seen some engagement photos I took a while ago of the adorable Bob & Ruth. They were married back in April, but due to a number of factors, we only just managed to sit down together and look at them.
On the morning of their wedding, I rung both Bob & Ruth separately to see how they were going - and they were both so excited. It was going to be a big day - a ceremony, afternoon tea, photos and then a reception for 100 people.

I joined Ruth as she got ready and she was as nervous as ever! There were many family members crammed into her (and soon to be Bob's) tiny little house. She wore a stunning white dress with applique, an embroidered pink sheer overtop and a handmade fascinator.  

This is the moment that Ruth saw herself in the mirror for the first time,
"I look like Queen Elizabeth!"

We arrived at Ruth's local Church in Papatoetoe for the ceremony. Ruth's daughter and granddaughter were her lovely bridesmaids and Bob had his brother and son as groomsmen. Bob's brother (singing below) was Bob's also best man 60 years ago!
Bon and Ruth's ceremony was extremely heartfelt and full of bursting love. These guys had the longest kiss I'd ever photographed.

Now, I have to mention that after the ceremony, something happened that I have never experienced while photographing a wedding. At the afternoon tea, poor Bob collapsed and was taken to hospital. It was extremely stressful and worrisome at the time - but I can tell you now that Bob is well recovered.
Unfortunately, Bob could not come to the reception - which went ahead anyway and we have a fantastic portrait shoot at the Manakau Botanical Gardens a week later. These guys are pretty lucky getting to wear their outfits twice! I will post these adorable photos soon. X