Saturday, 30 April 2011

Jodie Foster interview

'I read this article about obsessive ruminators. People who can't let go of things, but they are also the kind of writers who re write and get deeper and better. And that's what you have to do to get excellent creatively. You don't just write War and Peace in one draft. That kind of fascination was part of my prodigiousness as a child. It was probably beyond my years but, I was drawn to empathise with that kind of darkness. It made me happy, and it was a beautiful solidarity place that was just mine, that no body else could touch. But it's also really fucking lonely, which is incredibly hard to manage. So these two things exist and pull at you, so you get addicted to surviving it over and over again. Because it makes you feel alive'
Jodie Foster interview, 2011.

Jodie speaks about her childhood, and how being drawn to empathise with sad, dark, and almost dangerous aspects was most likely far beyond what any child is emotionally equip to handle. Nevertheless it builds a foundation and an unheard of creative ability, which is rather rare to come across in a person who outwardly appears so content and calm.  She likens it to a sense of isolation, but an isolation that is used as protection . It is a lovely place, but the happiness stems from feeling alone, and an ability to create a piece so real, and so far from yourself, that you almost forget who you are. It will be recognized as unique. This is a lovely feeling, because it is an addiction. A feeling of survival, that makes a person feel alive in a world that otherwise seems like a one-way road to nowhere.

I love this interview. It's strange because I find myself relating to a lot of her words.

Friday, 29 April 2011


Today I treated myself to a few new vintage goodies I spied in the York charity shops. I have the most beautiful lightly knitted smock detailed peach/pale pink top, a mustard coloured shirt, and a floral shirt too. I also took two monstrous sized piles of library books back to the libraries and handed in two of my interpersonal skills module assignments. (Just to get them completely off my hands and mind). It feels good to have them one hundred percent done.

Like I said.. two more to go. I am shooting tomorrow in Manchester, and staying with Anna tomorrow evening in York so there's not a chance that I'll be able to do any tomorrow. But I'll head home relatively early on Saturday and crack on with work again. I feel a whirlwind of a crazy time approaching. I've been booking train tickets this evening, to London and Birmingham for after the weekend.

And yes, I am choosing to not mention the royal wedding tomorrow. I may get weird reception from stating this opinion, but... I don't see why there's such a crazy 'let's put the country to a halt' way of dealing with a wedding.. Don't they want a beautifully private and romantic affair?..

Well, 1.23am and a shoot tomorrow. If I were sensible I would go to sleep..

Lily Cole 2007

Four years old now, but I love these shots of Lily Cole, by London photographer Wolfgang Mustain, published in Wig.
It's mainly because Lily is an incredible red head and I rather like these pics..

Thursday, 28 April 2011

Bon anniversaire

Yes, it was indeed my birthday two days ago, Tuesday 26th. I wasn't overly excited about the prospect but actually perhaps the occasions that we don't tend to build up in our minds are usually the best ones. I had a fantastic day and evening spent with family and close friends. George had made me the most divine looking chocolate and strawberry cake, which we ate in my garden after a nice but rather chilly barbeque. We then went into a cocktail bar in town and treated ourselves to celebratory drinks. It was lovely. I never drink a lot, mainly because I don't like what alcohol does to your body. But if there's one day of the year you should allow whatever you like, it is your birthday. I received gifts of money, lovely clothes, and lots of beautiful mugs and green tea. (my friends know me well) I even managed to surprise myself by waking up early yesterday morning, after not drinking that much since last years birthday, and heading down to Manchester for a photo shoot. Which I enjoyed very much. It's always great when you work with a fun and inspiring team.

Anna came over to Harrogate in the afternoon to join me for my birthday. She stayed all afternoon and evening and we were finally reunited after a rather long Easter break. I'm incredibly happy she is back in the North. I feel so thankful and lucky that I do have some wonderful friends. I always feel this way on birthdays. Perhaps even more so this year because I hadn't organized anything special so it felt very relaxed. But still, I was greeted with crazy amounts of birthday wishes and kind words, birthday cards and gifts, lots of love and hugs and happiness. It's overwhelming - to feel that kind of love and support from those in your life. It's so overwhelming that I just never know what to do with it all. I'm always taken aback, and left with so much appreciation of every single person who helped make my day lovely.

I am aware of this post turning into a very fluffy and flowery 'peace to the world' post. That is not the intention! I just think it is important to acknowledge the good things we have, otherwise we would either push them away, or take them for granted.

It's almost that feeling of being overwhelmed with goodness again. I am fortunate enough to have so much to look forward to and so many opportunities ahead of me. And yes, it makes my heart skip beats, and gives me that lump in my throat, but not that sad kind. The kind that makes you want to cry with happiness. Modelling work is taking an incredibly exciting turn.. I shall be heading down to London next week to meet some agents from Tokyo for work there over summer. I cannot even put into words how excited I am for this opportunity. In the meantime, I've been doing/have coming up some brilliant tests and shoots. It takes me back to before I was at university, when I was working in a dull job, and before I'd begun modelling properly. And goodness, no wonder I was depressed. My whole life has turned upside down, but in a good way. In the right way.. It's now the right way up. It feels like a lifetime ago.. and to think this is the whole world I was missing out on? I never again want to lose this grasp on my life.

Nothing is ever perfect. I am a perfectionist - I should know by now that nothing is ever made perfectly formed. Which means that life also, is never exactly the way we would like it. So to call it perfect - that would be wrong. It's just sometimes I like to feel happy about it. Grateful is how I am feeling today.

Wednesday, 27 April 2011


Now.. Let's explain.
I am in bed, at precisely 1.34am, slightly intoxicated with my beautiful amigo, Anna.
We have most definitely just NOT eaten cracker bread and sweetcorn.
Our feet and toesies are chilly.
Anna says 'you not got socks on!?'
Tanya says 'aye naaaa. I canne wear socksies at night.'
Anna says 'Ahhh, I can't do without them!'
Tanya says 'Can't live with em, can't live without em'
Anna says 'bit like our EDs'
Tanya says 'LET'S BLOG.'

PS We are not Scottish, Mexican, or Spanish!
Au revoir!
PPS Or French.

Sunday, 24 April 2011

Peter Lindbergh

'Creativity is the basis of self-expression. Why are some people supposedly more creative than others, and why can't others open themselves up enough to be able to express who they are?

Creation is the birth of something, and something cannot come from nothing. When someone creates something: a painting, a poem, a photograph, the creativity comes from an idea, from a feeling, from emotion, or from a combination of ideas, feelings and emotions that are somehow 'reborn' from all our experiences and perspectives.

Creativity is the desire to express ourselves. To formulate these expressions, we have to draw from our reservoir of experience, dreams, desires and experimentation and mix together what was, what is, and what could be... I don't think you can learn it, it is rather something that evolves. Your perception of everything in your life fills up this reservoir.

Some people are drawn to create and express themselves, others are drawn to reflect, to analyze. But in the end, they all could be creative if they had the desire to explore the way in which they are integrated in the world of their experiences. Because creativity is really a rebirth, a true tone we feel for ourselves and for our world. Then our work becomes a real part of who we are. Maybe all this is a question of how deep we are willing to go...'

by Peter Lindbergh
with Lily, New York, June 1996.

Simon Burstall

Just a quick post of a few images from June 2010 (Marie Claire US)
Because it's Karen Elson shot by Simon Burstall and it's a fantastic combination. Also the pictures are beautifully fresh, yet so demure and sophisticated too. It's rare that those two concepts can authentically work together in this way.

Easter Sunday

One down, and three more to go!
Yes, I submitted assignment one today. Eight days before the deadline, and keeping with my personal deadline of Tuesday. It feels good.
Today is Easter Sunday. To the majority of the population, this day either means church and quality family time, or a day-long binge on copious amounts of chocolate treats of the egg variety. However, for me - I actually woke up and it was only when I logged onto Facebook that I reminded myself that today is indeed Easter. I may not have even been aware if I hadn't seen status updates. That's either total obliviousness to the world around me, or just plain forgetfulness. Call it what you wish. Either way, I have not conformed to the expectations that society imposes on us, and I have not consumed chocolate or any other form of fattening 'treats'. I have never and will never understand the concept of celebrating over food until you feel sickeningly full and immobile.

Not to sound like the ultimate Easter scrooge...
Other than avoiding chocolate and the summer barbeque my family had this evening, I have had an enjoyable and productive day.
Take note of my absolutely beautiful dog, Lady. She was sunbathing next to me in the garden while I was referencing my essay.

Yes, the bowl of deliciousness was my breakfast of nuts, dried fruit, pumpkin seeds, strawberries and pink lady apple.
And the shorts are my first creation of denim cut-offs of this year. They fit perfectly and are so comfortable on. I may have ghostly white legs and freckly knees, but I don't care. They look great and save me from wearing my sisters size 10 denim shorts that actually fall right down to my feet if I don't wear a tight belt with them.

Tim Walker interview

Follow this link to Showstudio - In Fashion, where Penny Martin interviews one of my all time favorite creatives, Tim Walker. I am even more in love with him after watching this interview and hearing the way he speaks about the magical aspect of beauty in creativity.

I would die an extremely happy girl if I ever was fortunate enough to shoot with him. The way he describes every aspect of a piece of work collaborating to create something astoundingly beautiful - that's what it is. You cannot pinpoint it, there's no name for that moment, it just happens, and it is magical.

Saturday, 23 April 2011

Afternoon tea

Today has been the most wonderful day. My best friends are home this weekend, so we thought we must make the most of being able to spend time together since it is so rare that we are all together these days. Even though most of us have work to do and are rather stressed with other such things, we took this afternoon off, away from stress and worries, and took a leisurely walk through the gorgeous greenery of the Harrogate countryside to Bettys Tea Rooms for afternoon tea and scones. (I treated myself to green tea and even a scone aswell. And yes, it was worth every mouthful!) It was the most beautiful combination of people; Mark, Tasha, Moor, Kate, and moi. I love each and every one of them. Plenty of laughs, chats, love, and beautiful sun.

I currently have that lovely summers evening feeling. The one that feels satisfying - warm, glowing, and happy. Like nothing can break you, just for this moment in time. I wish these feelings would last a lifetime.

Inspiration to travel

I love England, I love being an English girl, I love my fair skin and freckles that accompany that, and I love living in a beautiful part of the country yet I still appreciate the madness and the rush of cities. It's not that I want to get away and escape the confusion of my mind and the people who 'stop' me from becoming who I wish to be. I've gone through that stage, and I'm still here. So don't get me wrong, I am content. But there is something in my heart with such a strong desire to see much more. I am lucky, I've visited Paris, London, New York, Istanbul.. and some beautiful summer locations, and I hold memories that I shall always remember. But there's more. I think even when I die, I won't have seen it all. It is strange because I am a 'home girl' - in the sense that I do miss home if I'm away for too long. I like my comforts, I like my own space, and I like the feeling of safety and security. So why do I want to travel and see the world so much?

Because the world is a beautiful place. I want to see the beauty with my own eyes and experience it with my heart. I feel like it's a part of 'me'. I need to break away from this safety in order for me to grow -  almost as though I won't be fully me until I have experienced all that is out there.

This string of thought came from a collection of photographs I came across. Beautiful images from Eric Guillemain of his travels from The Aries to The Hamptons.The collection forms an entire lookbook for J.Lindenberg which I find so peaceful and inspiring.

Friday, 22 April 2011

Alexander Herzen

'People often take prejudice or habit for truth and in that case feel no discomfort, but if they once realize that their truth is nonsense, the game is up. From then onwards it is only by force that a man can be compelled to do what he considers absurd.'
Alexander Herzen (circa 1850)

Thursday, 21 April 2011

A day in the life

Well, more of a whole week in the life..
I haven't really updated for a while so I thought it was about time I noted a few things down. It has been a crazy week. (nothing new there!) On Monday I was modelling at Bench and then had a pretty amazing casting afterwards but I'm really not quite sure how it went. I love my job :) And loved working with Bench. They really look after the models well :) I then discovered that I had left my bank card at home, so had to come back to Harrogate at the end of the day, instead of staying overnight at Tasha's.. Very frustrating but actually it probably was a blessing in disguise because I must grasp all the spare time I can, and make the most of it by doing my university work. I've been working a little each day, so it is slowly but surely getting done. Damn being an impatient perfectionist.

My mother has been away this week, which means that I have been living with two teenage couples in the house. My brother and his girlfriend, and my sister and George. It's been really stressful for me because I just need space sometimes, and they can be so messy and noisy. It has been nice though, to have space away from my mother. I've kept myself to myself really, and taken breaks to see a couple of friends. Today was lovely. Beautiful weather, and a test shoot over in Manchester. It was a team I've never worked with before, and a fantastic brief - really creative and new. I'm absolutely knackered now though. Very tired..

Shall leave you with a few pictures of the past few days

Wednesday, 20 April 2011

My current hat obsession

If anyone knows me well at all at this moment in time, they will undoubtedly have noticed my current obsession with hats. Trilbys and wide rimmed or the beautiful summers day 'floppy hat' style. I am in love with them so much that it's the only gift I've requested for my birthday next week.. I have my eye on a new hat. A compliment was given to me a good while ago when I turned up to a shoot wearing a trilby with a deep green vintage jacket. Something about a girl needing a 'certain kind of confidence' to pull off a hat for every day wear. And it was the nicest compliment that I could have received. Being referred to as 'confident' is a new and unheard of experience for me, so I really appreciated the compliment and held onto it. I think that has played a part in the birth of my love for hats this spring.
Anyway - slightly off the subject of this post!
I wanted to post a few shots of Rosie Tupper, photographed by Andreas Sjodin. It is a lovely and romantic collection for Elle Sweden, featuring some of the most beautiful hats I've set my eyes upon this year. More hat inspiration, and I love it!

Steven Meisel

I shall write a good update soon, but for now I wanted to post a few of these latest Steven Meisel shots. These shots capture the work of Alexander McQueen perfectly, all incredibly strong and elegant. Favorite shot - Karen Elson of course.

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Just be

'The future would mean that there is something that is going to happen, a 'fate.' The minute you 'see' a future you would necessarily change it by reacting, so it wouldn't be the same future.
Can you work towards the future? It seems to me false to channel your life. You in reality work in any direction from zero degree, which is where you are now.
But 'now' doesn't exist. You are walking backward into a hurricane and can only tell which way to go by the debris that flies past you. Or you are blown about in this hurricane, judging only the past whether you look into the wind or with it. If you 'see it coming' you have already reduced it to a judgement of the past.

Best not to worry about direction at all. Just be. Direction is already there.'

Written by college student, Jim Fiddes.

Saturday, 16 April 2011

Bobby Hillson

After spending today thoroughly getting my head stuck into books and essays, while I watch my younger sister slaving away over her A Level art coursework, I feel ever so slightly envious. It's not that I don't enjoy my own work. And it's not that I don't remember feeling stressed out of my mind when I was studying for my A Levels. But I miss that creativity of putting pencil to paper. I miss spending days on end in the art studios probably not creating much but nevertheless, having that space to escape and be myself, completely uninterrupted. On reflection, I really was that girl with a slight air of mystery. I would disappear and no one would even question how I was, or what I was doing. I think it was just assumed that I was away in my own little world. Not an ideal world. Not a perfect world. Just one of my own.

I thought I would share a few illustrations of the wonderful London fashion illustrator, Bobby Hillson. She worked as a full time illustrator for Vogue, and later in her career, had publications in The Sunday Times and The Observer, and also taught Alexander McQueen at the Fashion MA course she founded at St Martins. Her most well known pieces were during the 60's. Simple, very 60's, very lovely...