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Young Professionals to Watch: Gavin Collins, Photographer

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.

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Young Proffessionals to Watch: Laura McCullagh, photographer.

Photographer Laura McCullagh, CT

Young Cape Tonian professionals are making names for themselves in the arts.

One such dynamic individual is the inspiring and humble photographer,

Laura McCullagh.

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.

Chris Steampunk

 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!

Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, Synergy 2011

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.

Laura is not limited to band photography

DANI: Where can one find your work?

LAURA: On my website and blog (www.lauramccullagh.com/blog/), facebook (https://www.facebook.com/Laura.McCullagh.Art) and often in Your LMG magazine.

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?

LAURA: Hahaha honestly, if someone wanted to make a movie of my life I’d find a way to talk them out of 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.

Aesthetically and emotionally appealling shots: The Great Apes

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Pink Floyd’s Potential Reunion

Rumours of legendary Brit rockers Pink Floyd together again for the London Olympics this year (2012) had me super excited.


Articles popped up all over the net yesterday both supporting and denying the idea and equally mixed were the reactions of fans and critics. These are some of the more informative blurbs courtesy of some well reputed music journalists:

“Pink Floyd to reunite for London 2012 Olympics?” January 3, 2012 16:30


This article first ignited my excitement. Pink Floyd (Or what’s left of it) back in action!

Later the same day NME published another article denying the reunion in an article entitled “Dave Gilmour denies Pink Floyd are reuniting for London 2012 Olympics opening ceremony”  published: January 3, 2012 18:23


IBNlive published this article this morning:  “Pink Floyd to reunite for London Olympics” Posted on Jan 04, 2012 at 02:12pm IST


In their article they neither affirm nor deny that some members of the band will feature at the London Olympics. Actually they managed to say very little on the topic. The main content of the article was a quotation of an unnamed source. (Thanks for that.) However, they did reference Contactmusic news in the article which turned out to be really encouraging:


Sadly, 10hours ago they too posted an article that smashes my dreams to smithereens and pronounced denial of the rumours. They were shortly followed by Musicrooms.net, SoundSpike, Ultimate Classic Rock, Examiner.com, Gigwise and more. All denying claims of a reunion.

There is no doubt that I was bleak. It feels like iv’e tried to hi-5 someone and they stood there looking at me while my whole body launched into a massive, over-excited swipe only to leave me there with my arm dangling in the wind and my hopes hanging in the air,  disappointed.

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Running away with Circ du Soleil!

‘Ladies and Gentlemen I present: The Exciting! The magnificent! The Marvelous! Incredible, Thrilling, Out-of-this-world experience that is THE CIRCUS! ’

The awesome internationally acclaimed Circ du Soleil swung into Cape Town’s entertainment scene with an almighty ‘whoosh’ of magical mayhem. My pursuit of leisure led me to Grand West’s main arena for the spectacular spectacle that is Circ du Soleil! Sold out nearly immediately, they consented to add another five full days of performances to the Cape Town leg of the circus’ South-African tour and even then the packed arena was near capacity! Yipee!

The cast of mischievous circus folk includes clowns, acrobats, contortionists, strong-men, mimes and many more performing gravity-defying feats of unnatural proportions accompanied by phenomenal musical performances by a cast of live musicians and even Opera singers. All tied together with a candy-striped ribbon of comedic genius, the show was a boisterous manifestation of all things astonishingly bizarre.
The mime was laugh-out-loud funny with his interactive skits! The script was far beyond peculiar twisting the mundane into the extraordinary, making truth and impossibility as jumbled-up as the contortionists! We saw men and women held horizontally on a thin pole high in the air and ladies spinning and spiraling through the air and landing on spindle-thin swings. There were drummers and dancers, bicycles and bosses that all the other whatever-they-ares hailed. We saw giant hats and acrobats and a big-bellied blue guy with a tail.
Even if carnivals and creatures are not your thing, one simply can not deny the sheer wonder of the circus or hold a great measure of respect for the patience and perseverance it takes to perform such acts with the grace and technique to make it look so easy! It is born of preposterous miracles and ridiculous marvels, a juxtaposition of sensational sensations, the audacity to shock and amaze as only circus folk can! Circ du Soleil truly is the height of breathtaking entertainment!
 All sneaky pictures are the property of Gabrielle Van Hinsbergen of Gabrielle.vH.Photography
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