Browsing Tag

creatives

Australian Designer, Australian Fashion, Australian Fashion Industry

Fashion Design Studio 2018

November 27
Models standing backstage at the Fashion Design Studio Graduate Runway 2018 at Ultimo TAFE

Tonight, I had the pleasure of attending the Fashion Design Studio’s 2018 annual graduate runway.

The eagerly awaited fashion spectacle which showcases the most celebrated of their students.  The outstanding and often times breathtaking talent is awe inspiring and one must always remember that we are, in that very moment, bearing witness to those who will be the future heroes of the Australian fashion industry.

May I open with this.

Fashion design is not for the faint hearted.

Models standing backstage with Jade Cosgrove, CEO Label Ministry at the Fashion Design Studio Graduate Runway 2018 at Ultimo TAFE

Photography | Romualdo Nubla Studio MOR+ | Fashion Design Studio Graduate Runway 2018

Continue Reading…

Australian Fashion Industry, Editorial, Events, Global Fashion Industry

Fashion Design Studio 2016

November 29

fds_event_2016-ar5_7467-alexroberts_photo-lo

 

Forget restrictions. Forget modesty. Explore the freedom of sexual expression through couture swimwear with no rules. We didn’t come here to be sensible.

Emma Standen, Handsy Swimwear.

Last week I had the absolute pleasure of attending the Fashion Design Studio 2016 Graduate Runway Presentation at The Spine, Sydney TAFE.

Like each and every year, FDS seems to be able to churn out the most incredible fashion talent and this year was certainly no different.

Of course FDS, Fashion Design Studio, formerly East Sydney Tech is no stranger when it comes to churning out amazing creative talent. In it’s 61st year, it is the home of many a famous Australian designer whose names have well and truly commanded the respect and admiration of all within the industry both locally and internationally. And, stay there. Have they what! Akira Isogawa, Dion Lee, Nicky Zimmermann & Christopher Esber.

As I was only telling someone last night … yes, I am still banging on about my dearest passion.

At least I’m consistent!

It is the sole reason Label Ministry was created as an online platform.

To tell THE WORLD that we are simply the best!

Australian designers rock! I don’t believe there is a country in the world who can match the fashion talent we continuously unleash to the world at large, and quite frankly, I don’t believe there ever will.

We have “something”.  Intangible. Unmistakably ours.

A freshness that identifies as Australian. Our fabrics, our designs, and the way in which we wear our clothes demonstrate our acceptance of diversity and imagination. Fuelled by the blessing of unlimited sunshine, white sands and royal blue oceans which stretch as far as the eye can see.

Yep. No-one can touch us and that’s a fact.

Continue Reading…

Australian Fashion Industry, Editorial, Photography, Styling

Karlstrom Creatives

November 8
Picture of a girl in black and white with large round sunglasses and long brown hair.
Model with blue hair standing in colourful skirt and top with high heeled white shoes for a campaign shoot.

Karlstrom Creatives | Photography | Peter Karlstrom | Stylist | Leigh Karlstrom

 

 

The passion and love comes from creating something that is yours. We see what we do as a story and the characters just come to life.

Petter Karlstrom

 

One of my most favourite topics within the realm of Australian fashion is the creative team. We often take for granted the contribution that these teams make to the success of independent designers, important events, and the general gorgeous hype that our industry rocks. No other creative team is more deserving of this kudos which is the topic of my latest editorial.

Who are they? Karlstrom Creatives.

I absolutely love the work of Petter and Leigh Karlstrom.

They have reached, what I consider to be, the pinnacle of creative prowess.

Petter and Leigh Karlstrom are the dynamic duo. Quite literally. Petter is the photographer,  Leigh the stylist.

I first discovered their work when I interviewed the amazing Chisato Chris Arai, another creative genius. Definitely one of Australia’s most coveted makeup artists. If you have not discovered Chris Arai yet, do yourself the pleasure of checking out her work. Just navigate through the menu to her article. Truly inspiring.

But back to the Karlstrom duo. Their work is fresh, inspiring, different, engaging, and pure creativity. It is the epitome of imagination and fantasy, and I love it!

I can’t sing the praises of these people enough. I know, I know. You think I say that about everyone I interview. Well I do try to sing everybody’s praises. That’s true. But it is never undeserved, as I am blessed to be granted interviews with the very coolest of people!

Every now and again, you come across people and talent that is truly special. And this article is about these human gemstones.

Petter told me, “the streets inspire us. Characters and spaces. I usually get an idea from being at a cool location and then the rest just comes naturally”.

Continue Reading…

Bloggers, Editorial, Global Fashion Industry, Instagram, Interview, Photography, Styling

To Love, Honour & Instagram

February 16
Anna from Mother Pukka, with her daughter Mae, in Shoreditch. Photographed outside the Splice TV building painted by Camille Walala.

 

My husband recently showed me a video he thought would interest me. … what an understatement!!!

I loved it!

And I’m pretty sure you will too. With over five million views already, I guess I’m not the only one who thinks it hilarious. To all the wonderful Instagram Husbands out there, I’d like to thank you, for lots and lots of laughs.

I’m sure I speak for everyone when I say we appreciate you and love you … our Instagram lives would not be the same without you!

I was so intrigued and fascinated by the way the video was produced, I just had to find out who was behind it’s creation.

Michelle and Jeff Houghton, a married couple from Springfield, Missouri in America’s mid west, are the ingenious creative minds who birthed the concept. They are parents to their little boy, Elias and Michelle is also a counsellor and an artist.

Her Instagram husband, Jeff, is a comedian and talk show host.  Jeff creates a syndicated show called The Mystery Hour, which is what Instagram Husband was written and produced for. Michelle also writes and performs for the show.

“we thrive on keeping things interesting and are driven by a desire to connect with others and chase after our dreams. I am an avid Instagrammer and I love tacos, philosophical conversations, indie music, podcasts, and creative expression”.

Their Instagram account is the “official account bringing support, comport, & praise to all you human selfie-sticks out there …”

It is truly brilliant and hilarious. Quite simply, I’m hooked!

I hope you love this piece as much as I’ve enjoyed creating it.

 

 

 

LM

I absolutely love what you are doing … how did you start Instagram Husband?

IH

Jeff, my husband, came up with the Instagram Husband concept and wanted to do it as a video for his show, The Mystery Hour. He thought of it last summer, after having a lot of experiences where taking a pretty photo got in the way of experiencing the moment in both our lives and the lives of our friends.

LM

Is Instagram Husband a collaboration, as often I see many things that are posted by different people?

IH

In some ways, yes, it was a collaboration, in other ways no. We have a group of writers who write for The Mystery Hour and we collaborated on the video for that entity. The idea of Instagram Husband was Jeff’s and everyone who was involved was doing it for the show.

LM

How has Instagram changed your life?

IH

I have a lot of good friends who I have met through Instagram, actually, which is the greatest impact it has had on my life.When I find a new Instagrammer from my area who has similar taste, I follow them and then start commenting on their posts out of mutual respect and admiration. Often that has lead to online friendships which have lead to hanging out in real life. Some of my closest friendships started that way over the last five years. Instagram has also enhanced my connections with my friends because we have access to knowing what is going on in each other’s lives. It starts conversations about things we otherwise wouldn’t know about, and I love that.

LM

Do you feel we have created a problem of “oversharing” on social media in general? Do you feel that Instagram specifically has created an aspect of “oversharing” in our life?

IH

I think we do have a bit of “oversharing” going on in our culture, but I don’t think it is unique to Instagram. I am a counsellor and work primarily with adolescents. To them it’s not Instagram, it’s Snap Chat. For others, it’s Facebook. Regardless the medium, we do go to ridiculous lengths to provide interesting and appealing content related to our lives. I think we are going to look back in 50 years at this time period and see a lot of good things that have come from social media, but we will also recognise a lot of mistakes we have made culturally with regards to our obsession with it. We cannot learn those lessons until we go through them, however. I do see a lot of individuals online who go to extremes to get “likes” and ultimately gain validation from that, which creates a culture of comparison, and as Theodore Roosevelt said …

 

Michelle Houghton and her Instagram friends sitting around talking in a large room with a big open window on a cloudy day.

 

“Comparison is the Thief of Joy”

– Theodore Roosevelt

LM

Are you addicted to social media?

IH

You know, it sort of depends on what lens I am looking through to say whether or not I am “addicted” to social media. There have definitely been times in my life where I have spent more time on it than others. Also, compared to some people who are rarely online, I am definitely addicted, and yet compared to those who very obviously check their phones every few minutes, I am definitely not. I probably check my Instagram and Facebook feed a few times a day, but I don’t let myself get sucked down the rabbit hole of spending a chunk of time there as much as I used to. I really enjoy photography and curating a space which exudes my asthetic, so Instagram tends to be my “addiction” more than other mediums of social media.

LM

Do you believe that people lead “fake” lives through Instagram, as is often suggested?

IH

I have a hard time saying what is “fake” and what is “real”– with social media, because I truly see a movement toward people sharing the rawness and realness of their lives online. This is probably in response to all the curated lives we are seeing others live through the social media lens. I think it takes a real balance to share authentically what is happening in your life online, because you don’t want to make things “too” pretty or you are not relatable, and yet you also don’t want to over-share your struggles or the not-so-pretty side of things, because if you’re doing that all the time it can come across as humble-bragging, which is equally off-putting. In the end, I think we all want people to see the best in us. It just happens to be on a different platform and a different level with social media.

LM

What was your motivation for starting “Instagram Husband”.

IH

We started Instagram Husband because we thought it was a funny concept. We really enjoy making people laugh, and Jeff has a knack for coming up with relatable concepts to do that. It just so happened that this video connected with a lot of people.

LM

What do you feel are the main differences between Facebook and Instagram and are you fan of both platforms?

IH

I like both Instagram and Facebook. I tend to lean towards using Instagram more because I am such a fan of art and photography, and I follow a lot of people who use Instagram to showcase their work in both genres. I like Facebook to hear about what is going on with family and friends.

LM

What do you see as the positives of Instagram. And, the negatives?

IH

Instagram positives: good photography, platform for people to connect, photos often convey concepts in an easily-deliverable way where people connect to an image, community, and inspiration. Instagram negatives: tends to lead us to compare ourselves with others (just as all social media platforms do), FOMO– personally I have a hard time seeing vacation pictures of other people or people around the world in beautiful places if I’m spending my hours at work feeling uninspired and unmotivated.

LM

What is your opinion of buying followers and likes?

IH

I don’t really know anyone, (well, at least to my knowledge) who “buys” followers and likes–  to me it seems like another marketing ploy mostly for businesses or brands wanting to seem culturally relevant. I would be very suspicious of individual people who do that for personal accounts but I haven’t really dealt with it.

LM

What is your view of people who share a difficult personal moment on the Instagram platform?

IH

I sort of answered this in #7, but I’ll add to it by saying this– I heard a podcast where Elizabeth Gilbert interviewed Brene Brown, author of Daring Greatly and Rising Strong among other books about shame and vulnerability. She asked her about sharing personal stories in what she writes. What she had to say about it really resonated with me. She said that she never publicly shares a personal story that she has not already fully processed. Her rule of thumb being that if her healing is contingent upon what others say about that story, then she should not share it. She says she’s shared her story before she was ready, and learned a lot of lessons from that. When you share a difficult story before you have healed, it is not giving and generous to the people hearing it, and can actually be abusive to yourself. Attempting to gain deep healing from a wound in a public arena is just not the way to go about working out your issues– that is what close friends and therapy is for.

 

Jenn Fortner and Zac Fortner standing on train tracks for an Instagram pic

She missed another job interview today because the light was “just perfect”

“Creativity is the way I share my soul with the world”.

 – Brene Brown, in her podcast, Big Magic

LM

Do you believe that social media is responsible for people having poor interpersonal and social skills in real life?

IH

People throughout the ages have had poor social and interpersonal skills in real life, so I don’t think social media is to blame. In my career as a counsellor I work with a lot of people who have poor social skills, and there isn’t one specific set of circumstances that lead them to be that way. Some have manipulative or abusive upbringings, some have disorders like Autism where social interaction doesn’t come as easily, and some are just downright introverted, which is fine, but is not always valued in our culture. I know some very inward people who are also successful bloggers or Instagrammers. Just because they are less likely to wow someone in person than online does not mean that blogging is what caused them to be introverts. Blogging, social media, and writing may just be the platform they feel the most comfortable socialising on.

LM

Do you believe that Instagram amounts to modern day narcissism?

IH

I think Instagram can portray a sense of narcissism, yes, but I also believe most people don’t go out and create Instagram accounts because they want validation and “likes”, and thus are essentially narcissistic. I think to some extent we all want positive social interactions, and naturally that is a healthy thing. When someone spends an inordinate amount of time curating a space online that looks nothing like their real life in the hopes of gaining followers and likes, however, that crosses the bounds of healthy living.

LM

What is your view of Instagram advertising. Do you feel that it is effective?

IH

Every form of advertising is effective if it gets people to buy things.

LM

What has been your personal response to Instagram Husband?

IH

My personal response to Instagram Husband? Wow, there’s a lot in this one question. I’ll start by saying that I have been a supporter of my husbands show since he started it in a crappy basement of an improv theatre 10 years ago. It has been his dream to consistently showcase his talents of writing, acting, hosting, and performing on a large scale, and Instagram Husband got him, as the creator, a lot of the attention he deserved because the video was such a big hit.  My biggest response to it therefore is just sheer happiness. Mostly because of the story of our struggle. For him to be doing what he loves in a very obscure way.

Personally, I’ve had a lot of fun posting the Instagram photos on our @ig.husband account, and have had a great time connecting with people all across the world who relate to the video through that, through interviews, and with people reaching out after they saw it. It’s weird that so many of us have had this phenomenon in our lives– asking our husbands (or wives or girlfriends or friends or sisters or whatever) to take our photos so we can later post them– and we didn’t have a term for it up until this point.

LM

Do you enjoy your food less when you are always wanting to photograph it in it’s untouched state first?

IH

Heck no! I enjoy it MORE! I love anything that is well presented, and especially food! It’s fun to snap a picture of it before it’s all gobbled up. Obviously the line of  “we used to eat our food, now we just take pictures of it…” is a comedian’s take on prolonging eating things when we are taking pictures of it– but I promise I would never sacrifice tasting food for a photo!

LM

Do you feel a certain pressure to constantly find new and interesting material to post?

IH

Yeah, to be honest, sometimes I do. If it’s been a few days since I last posted a picture, I start to think about what I should post, or why I didn’t post. To me, snapping an iPhone picture of a scene or a person or a thing that happened during the day is a way to look at it with a focused lens– to not miss the beauty of that moment. If I am just going through the motions of my days and I don’t stop to REALLY look at my surroundings, I notice because I generally don’t have any pictures from that time. Now, of course, it CAN go the other way, where you take so many dang pictures that you miss the moment entirely, but I do think there is some balance. There is always something beautiful right in front of you, you just have to take a moment to really see it. I just happen to do that sometimes with snapping a photo of it.

LM

Is your husband generally interested in Instagram?

IH

He’s so-so about it. He definitely doesn’t spend much time on it– a lot of his pictures are of our son or of something funny he sees and wants to share.

 

20640551995_4b7f06890e_o

“Vacations make the best Instagram posts…”

– Michelle Houghton

LM

What do you think of the selfie?

IH

I have so many mixed feelings about the selfie!! I have only recently upped my selfie game, realizing that people who follow you like to see YOU, but before that I mostly felt self-gratuitous and weird about taking them. It was when I read an article somewhere about how selfies actually promote people LIKING themselves (gasp!) when I started to see the logic in how it could be a good thing. We’re often so down on how we look or who we are. I don’t think its a bad thing if you like the way your face looks in a particular light to take your own darn photo.

LM

Do you believe we are over the selfie and the duck face?

IH

I am so over duck face. I’ve always been over it. That and women standing with their hand on their hip and their butt curved out. WHO STANDS LIKE THAT IN REAL LIFE!?!?!

LM

For people who are looking for followers, what is your advice of increasing one’s following on Instagram?

IH

Offer something unique, special, genuine, and worth following.

LM

How often do you personally post to Instagram?

IH

I post to Instagram about once a day or every other day. It depends on what is going on in my life at the moment and how busy I am.

LM

Do you believe that posting to Instagram at a certain time is important? Why?

IH

I never really took the time to think about what time of day to post to Instagram for maximum exposure until I started curating the @ig.husband account — then I asked my friend who curates a famous blog about timing, and she gave me some tips. If you want to reach your audience, you need to think about when they are going to be online. So yes, I think it is important. Is it the be-all-and-end-all? No.

LM

What is next for Instagram Husband?

IH

There are some things in the works for what is coming next, but at this point we can’t share what that is. For now, we’re just trying to focus on putting out quality work with The Mystery Hour, and are having a ton of fun doing it!

LM

Where do you see yourselves in five years from now.

IH

I HAVE NO IDEA! As an artist, I just started selling my artwork online and in local venues, so I am hoping to get more exposure with it and incorporate it more into my life. I also LOVE counselling, I am planning on starting a private practice and other ventures where I share my expertise on a community platform. While all that is going on, The Mystery Hour is also a huge part of my life, and I hope that my husband and I continue to work together on the show or in some capacity to put out comedy to the world. Jeff is so incredibly talented and I LOVE working with him in that arena.

 

Photo of a girls reflection in a mirror

 

LM

What is your greatest dream?

IH

My greatest dream would be for Jeff and I to both be simultaneously employed doing what we love. “Chase your dreams” has practically been the motto in my house for a long time, but it has not come without sacrifices. More than anything I want us both to be happy creating unique things to contribute to the world, and to do it while providing for our family.

LM

What is your favourite food, country, and fashion designer?

IH

Food- tacos. Hands down.

Country- Croatia. I visited there last summer and FELL IN LOVE.

Fashion designer?? Hmmmm… to be honest I’ve never been able to afford designer labels, but if I would name a few that speak to me I would say Marc Jacobs, Proenza Schouler, and Rachel Comey. I tend to shop H&M, Free People, Urban Outfitters, Need Supply, and Madewell the most.

LM

Have you ever visited Australia? Do you intend to?

IH

I haven’t, but its definitely on the bucket list. I’ve heard that it’s breathtakingly gorgeous, and I’ve never met an Aussie I didn’t like.

LM

Lastly, what subject do you believe makes the best Instagram post?

IH

Vacations!

 

Michelle Houghton sitting in a window box drinking coffee.

 

If you have enjoyed reading about Instagram Husband check out The Mystery Hour.

 

Feature Image:

 

Anna Whitehouse  “This photo took 15 minutes of her standing in front of that wall with the kiddo writhing like Gollum to get out of her grasp. It took 45 more minutes just for the little one to stop snot-crying”.

 

Photography Accreditations | Instagram Content | Appreciation :

 

Michelle Houghton @michellehoughton Jeff Houghton @ig.husband @themysteryhour

Jen Fortner @jennfortner  Zac Fortner @zachfornter Anna Whitehouse @mother_pukka Johnny Fly @johnnyflyco

Love Instagram Husband

I do!!!

Until next time,

Jade xx

Label Ministry logo which is a picture of a stylised coathanger