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Projects Women I've Shot

A (mini) body of work
Daughter of Oceanum, Diani Beach, Kenya

I travelled to Diani Beach, an hour South of Mombasa, Kenya in December 2018 for a mini-sabbatical and break with multiple cameras. Of course.

I shot this series of water portraits of a beautiful artist friend Barbara Wildenboer who was at the time working on a body of work strongly influenced by Greek mythology.

I shot the whole series on a Holga camera on analogue/ medium format roll film. A favourite creative medium to work with.

I shot two projects, this one, and this one- link here and started a new project which I’m yet to continue (it’ll eventually and organically happen I think).

From Daughter of Oceanus all but one are double exposures and shot while I was chest deep in the 23 degree water. It was a stunning experience, the moon was already high and it was full.

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Categories
Projects Women I've Shot

Commercial Commission
For Soil For Life (NGO)

I shot the 2018 campaign for NGO Soil For Life which was founded by my (amazing) mother Pat Featherstone. Although the campaign included many male gardeners I’ve just included the projects which originated with women (for the sake of this all-female blog).

Soil For Life run workshops and courses both at their headquarter gardens in Constantia and around the poorer areas in Cape Town where they train both young and old how to grow their own food.

The images shown here are a representation of gardens in Lavender Hill, Delft and Phillipi.

From their website:

We believe EVERYONE has the potential to grow nutritious food, with whatever resources they have available.

Since we started in 2002 we have helped thousands of people in resource poor communities to develop productive and sustainable home food gardens.

We have also shared valuable information about health and nutrition and provided them with the knowledge and tools to live healthier, happier, and more fulfilling lives.

Growing People

We believe in growing people and endeavour to provide employment and further training opportunities. Several of our ‘graduates’ have become Soil for Life trainers and field workers.

Our Train the Trainer programme started in 2012 to extend our reach and impact. This two year course broadens the knowledge and skills of our most outstanding home gardeners, enabling them to become assistant trainers and support other gardeners in their communities.

Growing Income

We’ve seen over the years how some people become very interested in specific aspects of food gardening, such as growing seedlings, making compost or growing vegetables.

We provide mentoring, training and support as needed so they can explore these areas on a deeper level and potentially generate income. We have a flexible process to enable home gardeners to further develop their skills in areas that interest them, or where they have identified a gap in the market.

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Projects Women I've Shot

Women Who Create
This is Anna-Tina Schaal

Women Who Create is an ongoing portraiture project all shot in B&W in my studio in Woodstock, Cape Town. I love to connect with other creatives and see what motivates them and find out what is behind there work.

Swiss-born Anna-Tina, a creator deluxe, moved to Paris after school to study fashion design and ended up living and working in the French capital for 7 years. She met her now husband in Key West, Florida, whilst on holiday and never left Africa again after she visited him in his home country Namibia the following year. With their two children, aged 5 and 8, they live in Woodstock, Cape Town now. We are dear friends.

There is never a dull moment in our lives: juggling the demands of kids, our home, my business and our social life; it keeps us rather entertained.

Anna-Tina loves making things with her hands and what started out as a hobby of hand-made gifts for her friends, has turned into a small business. She makes big high-quality handmade blankets, cot blankets and ladies clutch bags.

Every piece is an original, unique in its colour, textures and fabric combination.

Besides selling online via Instagram and Facebook I’ve also participated in Kamersvol.com in Cape Town and in Johannesburg over the last years. The best thing about my business is that my hobby and passion became my work and I feel privileged for that. Juggling the business with my family’s activities and everyday errands and still trying to find time for myself is the biggest challenge.

I’d describe Anna-Tina as passionate, a perfectionist, a highly creative being and a real “do-er”. Not just does she make each of her products to the best quality and with the highest of standards but she also somehow finds the time to make things like pasta from scratch and cook bread with her kids on a daily basis.

She’s a wonder women.

You can find her website “Anna-Tina Original” right here.

And you can find Anna-Tina’s Instagram feed here for all her latest makes and inspiration.

Now for a Q&A:

Why do you create?

I create because I have to, to be a happy person…

Do you have pet peeves?

It drives me mad if people don’t do things properly and with care.

Your worst trait?

I guess I drive people crazy because I expect them to do things with great care, attention to detail and to the absolute best of their abilities.

What is/are your greatest extravagance/s?

To sneak out for a morning in the ocean

What do you think is overrated?

Ugly expensive things…

On what occasion do you lie?

When I have to deal with authorities I don’t trust. So often their rules don’t make any sense to me!

Which words or phrases do you most overuse?

Why?

When and where are/where you happiest?

Somewhere warm by the ocean.

What is your most treasured possession?

My children (even if they are not a possession really).

What do you do to help put you into your optimal creative space?

I start doing and that brings me there.

What does your (physical) creative space look like?

Currently and mostly an organised mess.

What do you get huge satisfaction out of doing apart from your primary creative outlet?

To be in the ocean to clean my head and then to clean up the mess (in my house):  to create order and a beautiful space.

When creating what is your biggest frustration?

Having to deal with admin that is attached to most creative processes.

When you’re in your ultimate creative space what word would you use to describe the experience?

Peace and happiness.

The above is a new range of super handy up-cycled zipper ‘pouches’, they’re similar to her clutch bags except these are much more low-key and great to stash things away in an organisational manner in your cluttered handbag. They’re all made with 100% off-cuts from her blanket making business, so cool!

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Projects Women I've Shot

Women Who Create
This is Michaela Younge

Women Who Create is an ongoing portraiture project all shot in B&W in my studio in Woodstock, Cape Town. I love to connect with other creatives and see what motivates them and find out what is behind there work.

I’ve followed Michaela’s work for a while as I find it intriguing, another world but also our own. I met her for the first time when I invited her into my studio to participate in Women Who Create.

She brought with her soft clouds of colourful, loose merino wool (which we used in her portrait), one of her complex, beautiful and completed pieces and a dangerous looking felting needle.

Michaela Younge is a South African artist born in Cape Town in 1993. After high school, Michaela attended the Michaelis School of Fine Art, where her father lectured in the Sculpture department. She graduated in 2015 receiving a Bachelor of Fine Arts with distinction. While at Michaelis, she primarily worked in the mediums of sculpture and print, however, after graduating she began working with wool, constructing felt tableaux depicting scenes of the everyday, the violent and the bizarre.

Her works are created by needle felting merino wool into textiles as well as found fabrics, such as old curtains and tapestries. The works are textural and are characterised by colourful, busy scenes that often play with perspective. Michaela is interested in the absurdity of everyday life, often finding humour in theatrical scenes of violence or through a comedy of errors. These scenes invite a closer look at human relationships and interactions – sometimes skewering the subjects in the process.

Below is a Proust-like interview with Michaela:

Why do you create?

Art-making is generally exciting, and expressive, and making money from something like that is rewarding, so I guess I create because I get pleasure from it.

What is/are your greatest extravagance/s?

“Decorasie” type objects, second-hand toys, ceramics, clothes.

Your greatest fear?

Alien abduction, going under anaesthetic but it doesn’t work and you’re just paralysed.

What defines your idea of happiness?

Watching BBC with my mom next to the heater is pretty good.

What do you think is overrated?

Pasta; everybody seems to love it, but let’s be honest it’s just long pieces of cooked flour and egg! I’m not saying it’s terrible, cause it can be good, I just think its overrated.

On what occasion do you lie?

If there was no benefit in telling the truth, and the truth was really a massive sack of awful.

Which words or phrases do you most overuse?

Using expletives, such as “fucking”, “bloody” and the word “wow”.

When and where are/where you happiest?

Having a drink on Bakoven Beach in the late afternoon on a hot summer’s day.

What is your most treasured possession?

My grandmother’s ring, gifted to me by my mother.

What is your most marked characteristic?

Apparently I give very good hugs, but that’s not useful in the time of Corona! A friend said that I get excited by things or going places some people wouldn’t, and I always have a story from it.

What do you do to help put you into your optimal creative space?

If the weather is bad, I have to have a hot water bottle as I find being cold very distracting, and a hot water bottle has the placebo effect of making my concentration better.

What does your (physical) creative space look like?

I work off a big desk, with a large lamp and I always have to have a pencil and some paper, especially if I’m talking on the phone as I get pre-emptively nervous that I may have to take notes at any point. Then there are two large boxes of colourful merino wool on the floor, and a lint roller.

What do you get huge satisfaction out of doing apart from your primary creative outlet?

I’ve been using pencil crayons and khoki pens and doing more drawings, and I’ve been experimenting with resin which is a hot mess but I love it.

When creating what is your biggest frustration?

Balancing admin, chores and creative work. I have to set aside time for emails as they give me a lot of stress!

When you’re in your ultimate creative space what word would you use to describe the experience?

“Quiet” or “quick”.

You can find Michaela’s Instagram profile here.

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