Ladies and Gentlemen, it is my privellage to present another talented photographer from the streets of the cultural capital city that is Cape Town! May I introduce Mr Gavin Collins:
The extraordinarily gifted creator of his Pretty Trendy blog, Gavin Collins, began his photographic and creative journey as a simple means of self expression. However, his natural talent and eye for style have captured the interest of many of Cape Town’s creatives. He is a remarkably dynamic individual and definitely one to look out for in the future.
Dani: In a few words, sum up the essence of you:
Gavin: I’m a funny-looking, care-free kid with big dreams and creative thoughts.
Dani: Where are you from and how did you become involved in photography?
Gavin: I’ve lived in Cape Town my whole life and for as long as I can remember I’ve always enjoyed taking pictures. I was into creative things like drawing and painting at school, and photography was just the next step for me. My friends and I used to spontaneously get dressed up (okay we still do) and mission around town to try get cool shots. I guess it’s just progressed from there.
Dani: If you had to classify your work in one or two sentences it would be…?
Gavin: I am fascinated by contemporary South African pop culture. I photograph things that appeal to me, exploring the aesthetic of simple, everyday things; finding beauty that others may overlook.
I am also interested in fashion and aspire to one day shoot for international fashion magazines.
Dani: Which have been your favourite shoots and why?
Gavin: My favourite shoot would have to be one of my very first ones. It was a very informal shoot with my friend Daisy on Longbeach in Noordhoek. She had this really cool, old red umbrella and together with stormy clouds and perfect light I really loved the photographs that I was able to make.
Oh and I also had a really fun day shooting some spoof shots of See You Next Wednesday with my friends for the Crazy White Bitches summer sale. It was hilarious because we were trying to be as outrageous as possible, and I think the end product was pretty successful.
Dani: What or whom would you love to photograph if you could choose anything or anyone in the world? Why?
Gavin: I would love to shoot someone like Charlotte Free for a magazine like Dazed & Confused or Wonderland. She is a total bad ass and has such an amazing sense of style (and she’s like stunningly beautiful) and Dazed is such an iconic magazine.
Dani: Where can one find your work?
Gavin: On my blog www.prettytrendy.tumblr.com
Dani: What he failed to mention is that his work has been regularly featured in popular arts magazine One Small Seed (an online and print magazine reknowned for recognising and promoting the work of notable creatives), exhibitions such as the Bodyblocks exhibition (a playful collection of body photography by upcoming and established photographers hosted by Exposure Gallery at The Old Biscuit Mill, Woodstock in 2011) and he has a consistantly strong online following.
Dani: What is the greatest lesson life has taught you thus far?
Gavin: I’ve learnt that if you want to be happy in life you need to embrace the challenges you experience with a positive attitude. A positive mentality is one of the greatest tools you can use when trying to achieve your goals. You should never underestimate the power of your mind.
Dani: If you could work with or for any photographer who would it be? And why?
Gavin: I’d have to say Rankin. He is really just a phenomenal photographer. He co-founded one of my favourite magazines, Dazed and he has recently launched a new magazine, called The Hunger, that consists of entirely his photographs (well, minus one or two). It’s incredible, I can’t think of any other photographer in the world attempting (or even thinking) of doing the same thing.
Gavin has this untamed honesty to his art. He has this gift and curse that he can’t hold anything back. That’s real art. In his pictures, in his write-ups; its all him. It comes across in the emotion of his photographs. He is telling stories with his camera.
Dani: If someone made a movie of your life, who would play the lead?
Gavin: Sheesh I have no idea. Well it would have to be a skinny white boy with a bad haircut playing me and it would definitely be a comedy.
Dani: Would you watch it?
Gavin: No. There’s no chance I would watch it because my life is awkward enough already, I don’t need to watch it being screened to an audience.
Dani: When you die you want the world to remember this:
Live hard, have fun and always make sure you wear clean underwear.
Find out more about Gavin Collins by checking out his blog www.prettytrendy.tumblr.com or stalk him on facebook.
Best known for her band photography as seen in Your LMG (local free music magazine and gig guide), Laura is a young lady that exudes passion and professionalism. She is a hardworking, dedicated fan of both live music and photography. If there is a decent gig in town Laura McCullagh will be there. She really does seem to be everywhere, all the time, camera in hand.
The Laura McCullagh Interview:
DANI: In a few words, sum up the essence of you
LAURA: I’m a creative person who loves all things art and music-related…and stuff like cats and flowers too…
DANI: Where are you from and how did you become involved in Photography?
LAURA: I’m from Cape Town and a creative family – I started hijacking my parents’ digital camera in my early teens and became serious about photography (ie. got my own camera) at around 14.
DANI: If you had to classify your work in one or two sentences it would be:
LAURA: For the most part, I try to focus on aesthetics and mood first and foremost, so I’d like to be able to describe most of my work as pretty and/or emotionally interesting.
Laura’s ability to bring emotion through her images is uncanny. She has this extraordinary ability to capture the theatrical qualities in the mundane things of life.
DANI: Which have been your favourite shoots and why?
LAURA: Synergy 2011 was amazing, mainly because I had media accreditation and was allowed to go all over the place. That kind of freedom was incredible!
DANI: What or whom would you love to photograph if you could choose anything or anyone in the world? Why?
LAURA: Iceland – it’s just ridiculously beautiful, all of it. I would love to wander around that country with a camera. Also, the Northern Lights – though I think my heart might explode if I saw them in real life.
DANI: Where can one find your work?
DANI: What is the greatest lesson life has taught you thus far?
LAURA: Not everyone can follow their passion full-time but that’s okay, as long as you keep doing what you love and what makes you happy as much as you can…at least, that’s what I try to do.
DANI: If you could work with or for another Photographer, who would it be? And why?
LAURA: I dunno if I’d be able to handle working with/for him (the pressure, aaah), but I’d love to meet someone like Anton Corbijn…his photographic work is iconic, as are the artists he’s worked with, but aside from that he also makes music videos and films. It’s my big dream to be doing that combination too someday…
DANI: If someone made a movie of your life; Who would play the lead? What would the theme be? Would you watch it?
DANI: When I die I want the world to remember this:
LAURA: Erm well it has no bearing on my death but in general I think we forget too easily that there is actually beauty all around us, even if it gets obscured by all the bad stuff. I feel a bit like a hypocrite saying that because I’m a total cynic but deep down (and in some cases, deeper than that) I think we’re all optimists and want to be happy. You don’t have to try to always look on the bright side, but it’s good to remember that not everything sucks…making or looking at beautiful things helps with this I think.