Category Archives: Female Related Objects & Stuff

Possibly The Birth of my Inspiration

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I lived in Stuttgart for a period of months when I was 17. I was going to school there and living with a friend and her family who stayed in a picturesque village  out of town.
I had a cheap-as-hell 35mm film camera and shot a lot of film while on the trip.  There were three occasions however on which I took photos that have since inspired my work….

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The images are haphazard; they were randomly and spontaneously captured and seem reminiscent of portholes into moments one can nostalgically never quite return to. They represent a sort of iconic state of femininity and abandon.

Maybe it has something to do with the dreaminess that is European light? Maybe it was the nondescript spaces? And maybe it was the naive innocence and carefree joy of those Summer days and the freedom that came with the times…I don’t know.

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There was a small sort of wilderness directly behind the family home where some of these images were taken on a funny day between the four of us. I think we’d just gone for a walk and had ended up messing about doing gymnastics and sunbathing in the long grass and flowers.

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A second occasion was an excavated dam on the border of France on a day trip around Easter and the third was out and about during a spontaneous afternoon of paddle-boating on a lake on day after school.

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I suppose these images represent the moments that come between naivety and self-awareness, and in this I find beauty and inspiration.

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Sadly, I posted some of the negatives to Germany years later and never got them back. Jojo, if you ever find them, please return them to me!

In first year photography, about 5 years later, I tried to re-create the atmosphere of these original images shot in 2000 as one of my personally motivated projects.

These new images, shot on Holga, have a certain energy but I felt like it was impossible to capture again the fleeting moments of those perfectly naive years before…

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Vintage Nudey Playing Cards

Lynette Bester, a good friend and brilliant artist brought these old “Cartes Sexy” bridge & poker cards back from a trip to Barcelona a few years back. I think she bought them on an old market there but they originally come from France. Friends often contribute items to the collection of all things female I have…

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These kinds of playing cards go way back… I feel like we’ve all seen them and know this particular 50’s style seedy pinup. I really appreciate the way in which these womens bodies have been documented, or maybe its more an appreciation of how our understanding of aesthetics related to beauty in the womens body has evolved so drastically and therefore how special these images have become.

The angles in her hips would only too readily be photoshopped out nowadays.

The angles in her hips would only too readily be photoshopped out nowadays.

The folds, rolls, diverse breast shapes and sizes are refreshing, authentic and well, sweet. The poses, props and locations are super retro, often so bad that they’re great again. The re-coloured red lips, hard looking big hair and awkwardness are endearing and happily nostalgic.

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And here are just a few more goodies from the playing pack…

Loving the hand re-drawn red-lace panties.

Loving the hand re-drawn red-lace panties.

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Traditional Namibian Women’s Headdressing on Vintage Stamps

Traditiojnal Headressing for Traditional women of Namibia

I was gifted these beautiful old stamps by my Namibian boyfriend quite a few years back. It is a small collection of eight stamps depicting different traditional hairstyles and headdressing by tribes-women living in Namibia (at the time of print it was still South West Africa / SWA).
The images were painted by A. H. Barrett in 1984 and show women from tribes: Kwaluudhi, Ngandjera, Mbukushu, Kwanyama, Herero, Kwambi, Himba and Bushman.

Himba Woman

Many of these women wear very little clothing and cover themselves in a mixture called Otjize which is made of rancid butter, ochre (reddish earth), ash, and resin of the Omuzumba bush (for fragrance). I recently read that this reddish-brown  colouring of the mixture also resonates with the Himba’s ideal of beauty which I found so interesting since so many western beauty ideals are also about bronzing and tanning the skin.

Vintage stamps depicting Namibian Womens headdresses

The women of these tribes are incredibly proud and I imagine that just like so many women I know, they spend hours a day on their appearance, from hair to adornment.

Kwaluudhi Woman

The stamps are all painted from a lower angle giving the women a regal air. They are strong portraits of pride and beauty of another kind.

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Vintage Women’s Clothing Patterns

Vintage Pattrens

I bought these ages ago at Milnerton Market and love them for their retro fashion sketches, faded colours and torn, worn beauty. Most things fashion tend to come “back” in at some stage as have so many of these cuts and hairstyles.

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Vintage Patterns

Vintage Patterns

The patterns here belong to varying fashion eras and depict the kind of slim, unnaturally elongated figures that the fashion world still demands from its real life models today.

Vintage Patterns

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