Talk

Lodestars Anthology Japan

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Introducing the latest addition to the Lodestars Anthology travelling family ... Japan! You can order your copy by clicking here.

For now, here is a sneak peak of the gems that lie within.

Journey to Japan and discover a land of tea and tropics, wabi-sabi and wonder. A place where symbolism abounds and nothing is without purpose. For here you’ll find an ancient and powerful landscape that has shaped history yet still dictates the rhythms of modern life. There are illuminated capitals and pockets of untouched wilderness, both marked by a deep sense of spirituality. Art flourishes, design inspires and others come first. May the light never dim on the Land of the Rising Sun.

None is travelling

Here along this way but I

This autumn evening

Matsuo Bashō

The Weekend - Cornwall

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Here at Lodestars Anthology we love a beautiful travel journal as much as the next person (a lot more so, probably).  So imagine how happy we were when we chanced across Cornwall by Weekend Journals, a definitive guide to exploring the fairest English county which features unique and special venues, from verdant gardens to visionary galleries, independent shops and exceptional restaurants. The book is written by Milly Kenny-Ryder and produced by Simon Lovell, who both have strong links to Cornwall, and have been visiting with their families since they were young.  Using these connections they have gone off the beaten track to discover the venues that the locals love, while also showcasing some of Cornwall's most iconic sites and stories.  For a hint of what this edition of The Weekend is all about, read on, and be inspired by all that Cornwall has to offer (or click here to order a copy).

The dining area at the St. Tudy Inn

St. Tudy Inn

Emily Scott is an ambitious and optimistic chef who took over the St. Tudy Inn, determined to offer locals and visitors great food in a delightful setting. This charming Cornish pub is situated in St. Tudy, a quaint village in North Cornwall. After extensive redecoration the pub feels cosy and welcoming, with Nicole Heidaripour prints on the walls and vintage furniture.

All Emily’s cheffing experience has been put to good use in the kitchen, where seasonality and local produce reign. The menu is full of comforting classics with a twist, such as the fish and chips, upgraded to the irresistibly tasty Monkfish tails in rosemary focaccia crumb with fries and citrus mayo. The St. Tudy Inn also runs regular events, including Pig and Cider nights with a hog roast and regional ales, so there's many an enticing reason to visit.

St. Tudy Inn, St. Tudy, Bodmin, Cornwall, PL30 3NN

01208 850 656

sttudyinn.com

A spin on the classic fish and chips - monkfish tails in rosemary crumb

Beautifully Cornish floral arrangement at the St. Tudy Inn

Surfside

Surfside is an exciting venture from London-based mixologist Tristan Stephenson, author of The Curious Bartender and part of the drinks company Fluid Movement who founded Purl and The Whistling Shop bars in London. Surfside has become a local hit, serving fresh food and cocktails at the water’s edge in Polzeath. Located on a corner of the beach, the restaurant is only accessible via the sand which adds to the experience.

Lobster crackers at Surfside Restaurant

Although the venue appears casual from the exterior, inside the offerings are for serious foodies with surf and turf platters and inventive cocktails. Thanks to the isolated location Surfside feels intimate and exclusive, with panoramic sea views adding something special to the meal.

Surfside Restaurant, On the Beach, Polzeath, Cornwall, PL27 6TB

01208 862 931

surfsidepolzeath.com

The choice is yours: drinks at Surfside Restaurant

Trevibban Mill & Appleton's at the Vineyard

Situated on the slopes of the Issey brook near Padstow, Trevibban Mill is one of the newer Cornish wineries but is already producing award-winning wines. Liz and Engin began planting in 2008 with an ambition to produce top quality Cornish wines and ciders. Native sheep graze on the land and their wool is for sale in the vineyard shop. Tours and tastings can be arranged to sample a range of the different wine and cider varieties.

Trevibban Mill and Appleton's at the Vineyard

Also on site is Appleton’s at the Vineyard, where ex-Fifteen head chef Andy Appleton is managing the kitchen, feeding hungry visitors with fine Italian dishes showcasing the local produce. Choose from a beautiful piece of sustainable fish, or a bowl of comforting pasta. The dishes provide the ideal accompaniment to a glass of Trevibban Mill wine.

Trevibban Mill & Appleton's at the Vineyard, Dark Lane, near Padstow, PL27 7SE

01841 541 413

trevibbanmill.com

Pasta and Wine at Trevibban Mill & Appleton's at the Vineyard

Trevibban Mill's Wine and Yarn

Hidden Kitchen

Hidden Kitchen is a supper club and culinary concierge serving unique food to its St Ives clientele. Located on the corner of St. Andrews Street, in the centre of the historic town, it is easy to miss this understated dining room. Chef James Watson and his wife Georgina worked together in the catering business before opening their first venue. The intimate dining experience in the boutique restaurant makes it feel like a dinner party at a friend’s house.

Hidden Kitchen

Reading material at the Hidden Kitchen

James regularly plays host to visiting chefs who provide diners with constantly changing, exciting international cuisines. Guest chefs have included Gordon Ramsay student Lee Skeet and Japanese cook Naoko Kashiwagi. After the meal leave a message to show your appreciation on the blackboard tables.

Hidden Kitchen, The Masonic Lodge, St. Andrews Street, St Ives, TR26 1AH

07792 639 755

hiddenkitchenstives.co.uk

Hidden Kitchen - a feast for the senses

Drinks at the Hidden Kitchen

Espressini

There are more and more promising independent coffee shops in Cornwall; Espressini on Killigrew Street in Falmouth is one of the best. This characterful venue serves a bespoke blend of beans sourced and roasted by Yallah Coffee, selected specially for them from growers around the world. Inside, the café is cosy and familiar with mismatched antique furniture, and the chatter accompanied by a thoughtful playlist. The coffee is bold in flavour and served to your preference. Brunch is particularly popular with a menu of tempting and indulgent dishes displaying a wide range of influences from world cuisines.

Coffee at Espressini

Nearby, on Falmouth harbour, is Dulce, the smaller sibling of Espressini which, as well as offering freshly brewed coffee, sells equipment to help you make the perfect cup at home.

39 Killigrew St, Falmouth, TR11 3PW

espressini.co.uk

Sweet treats at Espressini

Fabulous interior design at Espressini

Sarah King

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We talk to British Columbia-based illustrator and artist, Sarah King, about the importance of words in her work and the fascinating new techniques she's using. You can find more of her art at www.sarahaking.com and @sarahkingart. Could you tell us a little bit about your background – where you trained, how you learned and what inspired you to become an artist and an illustrator when you were younger?

I have always loved to draw and make things. I was part of a book-making group with friends when I was five where we wrote, illustrated, printed and bound small books. That was probably the start of me wanting to be an illustrator.

When it came to university it was between marine biology/zoology illustration, animation or graphic design. I didn't get great grades for the marine biology/zoology side, but I had a full portfolio of artwork to get in to Brighton for Graphic Design.  Brighton was an amazing experience, with talented and inspiring class mates and tutors who were great designers and illustrators themselves.

When did you make the move from London to Canada?  What drew you to British Columbia?

I moved to Canada in 2010.  Initially the plan was just for 6 months to snowboard and explore but as soon as I arrived I knew I wanted to stay. BC has an incredible landscape - winter is amazing when you have mountains to play in, and summer opens up even more to see. The hiking, surfing, mountain biking and snowboarding made me fall in love with the country.

Sarah King

You’ve travelled to some interesting locations, and produced work relating to travel – have your travels influenced you significantly?  Do you have a favourite country that you’ve visited?

Yes, travelling has influenced a lot of my work. I visited Canada 5 years ago and never left, so I would have to say BC is one of my favourite places. I also worked as a scuba diving instructor in Asia on coral reef conservation projects. Spending time observing the underwater world was an incredibly special experience, and something everyone should try.

What subjects or themes do you feel have been a draw for your work?

Nature, history, literature, travel, music.

You’ve worked across a number of different mediums and techniques – can you explain a little about the mediums/ techniques you use? Do you have a particular favourite?  Do you find that working in one medium/ technique helps, or feeds into working with another? 

Pen and ink is what I use most often - I love incorporating objects into my work, such as the type on fruit. It’s a tricky technical element to get right: the texture of the fruit skin, trying hard not to bruise the fruit, photography and editing.

Pyrography is quite a recent technique I picked up after seeing some beautiful etched leather shoes. Burning wood is very satisfying, you are limited with the tools, and the way the wood burns, so this dictates some of the style of the artwork. I love the permanence and solidity of the pieces.

Sarah King

You've worked for an impressive number of publications, and also produced some beautiful personal projects - do you have a favourite piece?

The snowboards for GNU are a personal favourite.  Having the opportunity to work for a great company, on a design for an Olympian, Jamie Anderson, on a product that I get to use and enjoy, and see other people using on the mountain, is pretty special.

Your work frequently combines text with art – how do the text and art work together to form parts of the whole illustration?

I use the words as a texture - you can create different flows and shades with different sizes and styles of text. People viewing the work always try to read and piece together the words, so what is written adds a whole new element to the image.

Do you write all the text for your pictures?  Where does the inspiration for the words come from?

Not always, commissions often provide text. Some personal projects are taken from poems and books. On some pieces I come up with the words myself, relating to the artwork.

A lot of your work features the natural world – how do you feel about the environment and the preservation of the environment?

I love nature and the outdoors, and spend as much time as possible exploring it. Hopefully we humans figure it out, and preserve as much as possible.

Sarah King

The Canada Magazine

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This week the Canada issue of Lodestars Anthology - officially released in the UK on October 18 - will be avalible through our online store. So we thought we'd celebrate by sharing some of the wild and wonderful images and illustrations that fill the pages of issue 6. Thank you as always to our truly spectacular contributors - the world is indeed filled with some rather talented beings. You can order the magazine here.

Lodestars Anthology Canada

About the magazine: Canada is a land where lakes glow, mountains soar and island life prevails. Wild, rugged and unfazed by time, luxury resides in unexpected corners, cities delight and outdoor adventure beckons, for nature is indeed all around. You yearn to explore, to get lost, to reconnect with a pristine beauty so hard to encounter in the modern world. The seasons astound - from frozen winters to summer’s never-setting sun - while waterfalls carve canyons, rivers become frozen highways and people smile, aware of their heritage and all that this land has gifted them. You’ll find snow and maple syrup, art and architecture and a landscape both inspiring and eternal. Greetings from the Great White North.

Lodestars Anthology Canada

Some featured destinations:

Clayoquot Wilderness Resort Fogo Island Inn Vancouver Toronto Montreal The flavours of Canada Cosman & Webb maple syrup Left Field Brewery Canoe North Adventures The Yukon in winter Northwest Territories Nova Scotia Halifax Lobster Boil Ontario wines The Canadian Rockies Prince Edward Island Calgary The Canadian

Lodestars Anthology Canada

Lodestars Anthology Canada

Lodestars Anthology Canada

Lodestars Anthology Canada

Lodestars Anthology Canada

Lodestars Anthology Canada

Lodestars Anthology Canada

Lodestars Anthology Canada

Lodestars Anthology Canada

Lodestars Anthology Canada

Lodestars Anthology Canada

Lodestars Anthology Canada

 

The Stack

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Issue 5: Sweden This week we paid a visit to Monocle HQ in London to be interviewed by the team at Monocle Radio for their magazine show The Stack. As they say, the programme is 'essential listening for anyone who cares about what they read – and how they read it. The Stack is Monocle’s take on the world of print, focusing on everything from the glossiest fashion title to the grittiest newspaper'. You can listen to the interview below. 

From the cool and crisp landscapes of Sweden to the dark cinemas of Asia, evoking a sense of place on the page is a delicate art. We talk to the editors of two magazines doing just that: Liz Schaffer from travel title ‘Lodestars Anthology’ and Davide Cazzaro, the man behind ‘Nang’ magazine.

Click here to play.

Skåne

Skåne

Skåne

Skåne

Skåne

 

 

Louise Nordström Pettersson

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We had a chat with our issue 5 cover photographer Louise Nordström Pettersson about Sweden, light and the joys of spying the first buds of spring. You can see more of Louise's work on her Instagram page.

Why do you love taking photographs and when did you start?

I’ve always been creative and I loved to paint and draw when I was younger. But at the age of 14 I got my first camera and fell in love with photography. Photography means ”draw with light” in greek so I guess I let my eyes and camera draw for me instead of my hand and pencils. I just love to capture everything I find beautiful and show everyone what an amazing world we’re living in!

What do you enjoy taking photographs of in particular?

Nature. I grew up with the sea and forest just minutes away from my home and I think the nature is so amazing and beautiful. Especially sunrises, there is nothing as peaceful as being out in the forest an early summer morning, catching the first sunbeams through the trees with the camera in my hand.

Louise Nordström Pettersson

Where are you from in Sweden?

I’m from a small village in Båstad county in the southern part of Sweden.

The subject of your photo essay in the new magazine is Swedish light - what makes the light in Sweden so special?

I think it’s special because the light is so different from season to season. It’s most extreme in the northern parts of Sweden where the sun never sets during summer and never rises during winter. And when the sun never rises we have the Northern Lights or aurora borealis which light up the skies instead. I love the variations and differences between the light of all seasons.

Louise Nordström Pettersson

Do you have a favourite season?

I think summer is my favourite season, because it has the most beautiful sunrises and everything in nature is blooming. Everything feel so alive. Although, every spring, autumn and winter I think to myself ”this is my favourite season!” haha... Every season has its charm.

Do you have a favourite part of Sweden?

I fell completely in love with Björkliden in northern Sweden when I went there for the first time 7 years ago. The mountains, tundra and views are stunning and took my breath away. It’s just as beautiful in the summer as in the winter. But I will always love the peninsula, Bjärehalvön, in southern Sweden where I live and grew up. There is something special about this place and it’s where I shoot most of my photographs.

You've photographed quite a few flowers, what is it about them that you like so much?

I’ve always liked flowers, they are beautiful and they come in so many different shapes and colours. And when the first flowers bloom in the spring, you know it’s really spring. And when the meadows are full of all sorts of flowers, you know it’s summer. Flowers just bring so much happiness to me.

Louise Nordström Pettersson

Louise Nordström Pettersson

Louise Nordström Pettersson

Louise Nordström Pettersson

Louise Nordström Pettersson

Louise Nordström Pettersson

Louise Nordström Pettersson

Louise Nordström Pettersson

Louise Nordström Pettersson

Louise Nordström Pettersson

Louise Nordström Pettersson

Louise Nordström Pettersson

Louise Nordström Pettersson

 

Lodestars Anthology - Italy

LA Italy cover With our Italy issue set to arrive back from the printers next week, we thought it would be grand to a) give you a little sneak peak of what lies within the magazine and b) let you know where copies can be ordered.

For UK, EU and US shoppers (and for Australian's who are reluctant to wait an extra two months) you can order copies from:

Newsstand.co.uk or Magpile

For more patient Aussies and New Zealanders there is the subscription service offered by

Hard To Find.

Just click on the above names and you shall be taken straight to the relevant site.

Of course if you have any questions or are after back issues don't hesitate to get in touch be emailing info@lodestarsanthology.co.uk and we'll lend a helping hand.

Lodestars Anthology Italy Layout

Lodestars Anthology Italy Layout

Lodestars Anthology Italy Layout

Lodestars Anthology Italy Layout

Lodestars Anthology Italy Layout

Lodestars Anthology Italy Layout

Lodestars Anthology Italy Layout

Lodestars Anthology Italy Layout

Lodestars Anthology Italy Layout

Lodestars Anthology Italy Layout

Lodestars Anthology Italy Layout

Lodestars Anthology Italy Layout

Lodestars Anthology Italy Layout

Lodestars Anthology Italy Layout

Simon Bray

Lago di Valvestino While travelling upon Lake Garda for the Italy issue of Lodestars Anthology (out later this month) we first noticed the photographs of Simon Bray, who just so happened to be snapping the same subject as us. Drawn to his beautiful use of light, and ability to make this perfectly popular corner of Italy seem amazingly calm, we had to ask a few questions about his work ... and Italy of course.

Lake from Riva

What do you love about photography?

I have a desire to create images and often I won’t be able to rest until I’ve taken them, so in that sense, each image serves it’s purpose in feeding that personal need; it’s a scratch that needs to be itched, very therapeutic. At the same time, I know that each image holds a varying level of potential. I love that an image can evoke something in a person, a response or an emotion, that will be so vastly different to what I, as the photographer, see, or what anybody else might see in it. We’re all made up of a combination of our own history, cultural influences, our social upbringing, the places that we’ve been and the people that we’ve met. That can mean that an image that I’ve taken may mean absolutely nothing to you, but there might be one image, for reasons known or unknown, that you connect with, that sparks something, a thought or memory, or that you just enjoy visually because of the colours, tones, composition or subject matter. Each image has that potential power.

I’ve also been thinking about imagery and timescales recently. Photography is a long game. I’ll often think about the fact that the images I take may well outlast me, and that as much value as there is in viewing them now, I hope that the generations that supersede me will find them interesting in many years to come.

Can you remember the first photograph you took?

Not as such, although the first time I got really excited about an image was a photograph I took of a hummingbird hawk-moth in the French Alps on holiday. I was probably in my early teens and using my first 35mm film camera. Getting the film developed and looking at the print, and seeing that I’d somehow managed to capture it’s motion and movement felt quite incredible.

Lake from Riva

What inspires your work?

I’d like to say that each location I work in acts as the pure influence for the images I create, but I know that’s not totally true. I’ll certainly feed off the elements before me, but there are so many subconscious factors behind the decisions I make, if I’ve seen a similar image before I’ll need to decide whether I want to embrace that and create it for myself, or try something different. I suppose everything I read about photography, and all the images that I take in will influence my sense of how to portray subject matter in both potentially helpful or unhelpful ways. To a greater extent, it’s the light that will inspire me. I won’t often stop to make a landscape picture except for the fact that the light is particularly interesting, and my discernment for that is certainly something that has developed over the past couple of years and something I’m trying to encourage.

How would you define your style?

One of the most significant factors is space. Living in a city, I’m constantly yearning for greater physical space, so once I’m somewhere that I feel that greater sense of freedom, I can’t help but let that come through in the images, which often manifests itself in the form of negative space using sky or water. I was discussing this recently with a friend, how I won’t be proactively making decisions about an image as I take it. Previously, I will have taken a lot more time to consider the image I want before I shoot it, perhaps for technical reasons, or just slow decision making, but now it seems to come far more naturally and I’ll work quite quickly. I think that’s how my personal style will be encouraged, simply through the practice of taking images, although I still feel I need to slow everything down a bit! I’m trying to develop my understanding of how to create more concise images that dig deeper, to avoid simple surface level imagery and I’m sure taking more time to consider each image will aid that.

Lake Garda

Does travel influence your work in any way?

Absolutely. I live in central Manchester, which really doesn’t provide much to feed my desire to create landscape images, so it’s almost a necessity for me to travel. I really savour the opportunity to explore a new location with my camera. There’s an excitement that comes with visiting a certain place in a certain season and capturing it in it’s current state, knowing that other photographers will visit later in the day, week, month or years later and see it in a completely different way. Landscapes evolve and the light makes all the difference. I’m not usually able to return on multiple occasions, but in many ways it’s a privilege to preserve a place on any given day through my images, it forces me to work with the environment I’m in and create in the moment, avoiding any preconceptions of what I’d like to create, which can be distracting.

Lake Garda

What makes Italy such an interesting subject?

It’s a popular holiday destination for a reason! The combination of the the incredible food, weather and variety of scenery make it such a special place for me. The area surrounding Lake Garda is an alpine wonderland. Exploring the mountains and lakes was such a privilege, so many breathtaking views, and even though it was warm, everything was washed in this amazing blue light, probably the moisture in the air, it made for some stunning scenes to photograph. I’d recommend visiting in the off seasons in order to appreciate the true sense of space without the crowds of tourists, because there are some stunning small towns and villages, where I could just sit and watch the world go by for days with a glass of wine and some fresh pasta!

Has there been a particularly memorable project either past or present?

I’m currently working on my first long-term project, a collaboration with a Manchester based artist called Tom Musgrove. We’re visiting a selection of the most stunning locations across the UK, and each creating a piece for each location, which we’ll be exhibiting side-by-side at a show in the autumn. It’s taken nearly 2 years already, and it’s been great to visit stunning places that are only a few hours away. Our most recent trip to Glen Coe in Scotland was just incredible, the scenery, the light, the people we met, the conversations it sparked, the whole experience was very memorable. I also get to watch my work evolve, which is very important, but the most influential element has been the development of my relationship with Tom, the opportunity to discuss the discourse of our work, our varying methods and explore the motivations behind each piece we create. Tom takes his time on each trip to sketch, which has really forced me to slow down and appreciate the changing elements and light within the landscape.

Mountains above Riva

What is your dream subject?

I don’t know if I have one at the moment, maybe that will develop over time. For now, any scenic location that I have the chance to explore with my camera in my own time would be a dream come true! Every commission I receive or project that I set out to do furthers my work, it’s a fresh challenge that I want to fully embrace. I still feel like I’m defining my practice and as a result, my style or imagery, maybe one day that will feel more concrete, or maybe I’ll just keep trying new things!

A selection of Simon's landscape work is up at www.simonbray.co.uk and can also be spired on Instagram.

Sirmione Jetty

Sunset from Peschiera

Sirnione Tree

Sale Waters Edge

Salo

Venice

The Chaos Older Still

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Rome-4to Rome to Rome, la città aperta

The light here is ancient, the chaos older still— buzzing across the Appian Way, but one of the every that lead to the city eternal, suspended, you can hear her muffled roars, traces of a hungry mouth with frazzled mane a cracked throat craving aqueducts defunct, now long dry and thistle crowned. What could appear as more bereft than landscapes of rubble, marble stripped and sun burnt, awaiting still another ravaging? Yet therein is her secret held: there remains in these fabled ruins, bequeathed to us as though our coming had been foretold, a quivering palpable beneath the footfalls of our approach waiting to be given voice and body— for a city is never completed, only inherited.

Poem by David Warren Grunner and Photographs by Nic Rue.

to Rome

to Rome

to Rome

to Rome

to Rome

to Rome

to Rome

to Rome

Tom Bunning

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Death Valley - Photographed by Tom Bunning We met Tom Bunning in a coffee shop in South London where he greeted us with coffee and a portfolio. Understandably, we fell instantly in love with his photographed world, made up of etherial landscapes that play with light and scale and intimate portraits that capture the sitter's soul in the most artful way possible. We just had to chat to him about what makes his work so easy to get completely lost within.

What do you love about photography?

Where to start. I think I love a photo’s ability to transport the viewer: be it back to a special memory; forward to a place they’d love to visit, or to give a glimpse into a person’s mind. But in less romantic terms, I’m basically a lazy painter. If I found that wielding a paintbrush gave me as much immediate pleasure as taking a photo does I’d probably be trying to do that now, probably rather badly. For me the greatest pleasure right now is to be able to earn a living doing something that I love. Fingers crossed that continues. I also really enjoy seeing other photographers’ work. I feel part of a community of like-minded souls, all of us trying to create something meaningful or beautiful or interesting, using photography to try to make sense of our world.

Can you remember the first photograph you took?

I don’t think I can remember the first photo I took, but I can definitely remember an early view that inspired me to take pictures. I grew up in a very small village in Suffolk, our home was surrounded by fields and the view from my bedroom window was of a giant oak tree set in the centre of a field. All year round I’d watch the colours of the landscape change and in the summer the old proud oak would stand tall in the centre of a bright yellow square of rapeseed flowers, the small window providing a perfectly framed photograph in my mind’s eye.

What inspires your work?

My inspirations have changed over the years I’ve been growing - both as a photographer and as a person. When I seriously started trying to take pictures for a living I was working at Abbey Road Music Studios (it sounds glamorous but I was mostly in a dark room QCing music videos!) so my early work was definitely inspired by rock and roll. I had several great years of shooting live gigs, taking portraits of musicians and touring with bands, interspersed with fashion work, which I think went hand-in-hand quite naturally. In recent years I think I’ve become earthier, more inspired by the natural world if you like, and I think this change in personal perspective has affected what I’m inspired to shoot professionally. One of my current projects is entitled Crafted and is a series of photos documenting and celebrating those in Britain who make the small, the hand-crafted and the individual. I’ve always been interested in England’s landscape and heritage and I suppose Crafted is an extension of this interest, focusing in closer on the personal aspect of our environment. On the flip-side, as my commercial work increasingly takes me further around the world, I’ve been enjoying capturing foreign landscapes.

Death Valley - Photographed by Tom Bunning

How would you define your style?

I’m still developing as a photographer and my style will continue to change over the years but I like to think it’s honest, clean and simple. I don’t like to over-process or over-edit my shots and I always try to get what’s on the back of the camera as close to how I want it before it gets to the editing stage. Of course some clients know exactly what they’re after in terms of a feel or look of a shot and when that’s the case I think you have to find the balance between your personal style and their needs - always a challenge but a fantastic one. I recently had a great meeting with an agency and they described my work as having a ‘very gentle approach’ which was a lovely thing to hear.

Does travel influence your work in any way?

As I touched on above, it has done much more so recently. My commercial work over the last year or so has taken me around the world to all sorts of incredible places, from Seoul to Islay, from Vietnam to New York, Kuala Lumpur to LA, among others - although I should say that amidst all this excitement I’ve had many shoots in dirty parts of London to keep my feet on the ground! I think the thing about travelling for me is that as a full-time Londoner, living and working in the fast lane, being away gives me an opportunity to expand my view of the world and gives me time to see things I probably miss at home. Something that seems very ordinary to locals can look extraordinary through a foreigner’s eyes.

Death Valley - Photographed by Tom Bunning

Has there been a particularly memorable project either past or present?

I would have to say my ‘Death Valley’ series from earlier this year, wonderfully displayed here by your good selves! One of my current gigs is working with David Beckham and his team for Haig Club Whisky which has been an absolute pleasure. In the grey depths of January I flew to the sunshine state for a promotional shoot for Haig. The shoot was only for the day but it would have been rude not to make the most of it so my assistant Danny and I stayed out there for a week, hired a car and took a road-trip from LA to Vegas via Death Valley where I spent several days shooting a series of landscapes. An absolute dream trip. The colours and expanse of the landscape out there were so rich and photogenic and I’m really pleased with the results.

What is your dream subject?

That’s a tricky one. In terms of humans I love photographing interesting faces, be they young, old or in-between. I’d love to turn my lens on someone like John Hurt or Morgan Freeman but equally so on a sheep-farmer or a dress-maker. Landscape-wise I have a real hankering to go to Iceland. I don’t have much experience of working with such a cold clear environment and, having recently invested in the new PhaseOne IQ250, I’d love to get out there with it and see what I can capture. My ultimate goal is to bring the two main aspects of my work closer together, working on location to take portraits of interesting subjects, set in interesting environments.

Where can we see more of your work?

I’ve recently had my new book made, by Cathy Robert at Delta Design who’s done a wonderful job, so I’m in the process of making appointments with agencies. Much of my recent work is showcased on my site at www.tombunning.com. I plan to exhibit the Crafted series next year in London so look out for that.

Death Valley - Photographed by Tom Bunning

Death Valley - Photographed by Tom Bunning

Death Valley - Photographed by Tom Bunning

“You don't make a photograph just with a camera. You bring to the act of photography all the pictures you have seen, the books you have read, the music you have heard, the people you have loved.” ― Ansel Adams

Songs of Sydney

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sydney opera house Words by Jessica Lim & Illustration by Daisy Hardman

Beneath the iconic sails, the lights dim. Quiet filters through the darkened theatre; the quiet of familiar expectation. And the music starts.

Seated in the Joan Sutherland Theatre, the second largest performance hall in the Sydney Opera House, it is always the hush before the overture that fills me with anticipation; the wash of the first chords that embraces me into the exotic and comfortingly unfamiliar experience of attending the opera. Tonight it is Bizet who greets us⎯ dramatic, passionate, utterly recognisable and yet always fresh, never cliché. The stage is dimly lit, the heavily draped curtains revealing an evocatively rustic set, and before Carmen has even sauntered onstage to seduce her audience and Don Jose with her sultry Habanera, I, along with the other thousand and a half attendees, am swept into a world of intrigue and betrayal. Opera Australia casts impeccable leads; passionate performers with rich voices that fill the room, seducing, accusing and thrilling viewers attending a Gilbert and Sullivan operetta, a heart-wrenching Puccini tragedy, a rousing Verdi, a timeless Mozart drama. The direction and staging, too, is exquisite in its deceptive simplicity; chameleon-like, the stage that was expansively empty and minimalist in Madama Butterfly is claustrophobically intimate in Carmen.

And yet the thrill and paradox of attending opera is that it is a participation in continual displacement, weaving together an immersive musical and dramatic experience with the constant awareness of the physicality and uniqueness of the space in which the show is performed. Enticed by Carmen’s Seguedilla and entranced by the otherness of Bizet’s gypsy life, I am simultaneously intensely aware of the woman next to me, elegantly dressed in a kimono-inspired gown that billows onto the edge of my seat, of the lady in front of me who has dressed to theme, a large folded Spanish fan resting on her armrest. And when the curtain falls for intermission, Spanish rhythms still thrumming through my veins, I weave my way to the theatre bar⎯ and am taken anew by the vastness of Sydney Harbour, stretching into the darkening night. The world of Spanish gypsies slides like a palimpsest beneath the stunning view of the Harbour Bridge, which arcs and sculpts the darkling sky above the still-moving harbour waters beneath. And now appear lights beneath the Bridge, and the glow of an evening-lit ferry on the slow-rolling waves scatters a glimmering path to Fort Denison and beyond.

The emotional and cultural investment involved in watching operas calls for sustenance, and after a small pot of ice-cream that I have come to identify specifically with musical and theatrical experiences, I wash away my knowledge of Carmen’s impending doom with a light, sparkling champagne. At the mouth of the stairs to the theatre bar, there is a small photoset, and a couple sits amidst the bright scarves, baskets of produce, a Spanish guitar lying to the side. It calls me back to Don Jose’s and Carmen’s flight and doomed romance, and even now, the signal comes marking the end of intermission and we are drawn back by the lush, vibrant orchestra into the gypsy’s hideout in the mountains, drawn to the dynamic and fiercely scornful Carmen and the pathos of Don Jose’s destructively obsessive love.

Time has a strange way of behaving inside the Sydney Opera House. Outside, the evening has sunk into night in the space of hours, but inside the Joan Sutherland Theatre, we have witnessed the passing of months. Emerging from the theatre, I cannot leave Bizet’s music behind, the agony of the wordless fate motif and the finality of the falling curtain. Emerging from the theatre, I am again transfixed by the sublime sight of Sydney Harbour by night.

We converge outside, filtering through the forecourt of the Opera House: willing victims to Carmen’s allure and witnesses to the pathos of Don Jose’s descent to desperate murderer; still-spellbound attendees from the vast Concert Hall; theatre enthusiasts the Playhouse. Ahead of me, the Harbour Bridge reaches across the water, and behind, the sails of the Opera House soar, incandescent against the smooth, clear night. The buzz of the nightlife grows steadily as I turn to view the postcard-worthy panorama that has so fittingly made Sydney a touted tourist attraction. And yet, as I board the train at Circular Quay Station, viewing the Opera House from afar, to stand on the steps of that great building is to glimpse only the shell of that vibrant place, living home to so many of Australia’s finest performance groups. For the pulse of the Sydney Opera House is in the energetic, talented musicians and performers who fill its halls and continue to delight thousands, transporting listeners and viewers to different worlds and times while continually drawing them back to the physicality of the performative space of the Opera House: alerting all to the beauty and uniqueness that is this vibrant city of Sydney.

Berkelouw Book Barn

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Berkelouw Book Barn Words & Photographs by Angela Terrell

Sitting under rustic timber rafters you can almost sense the words permeating the air. At a time when kindles and online book sales are a way of life, Berkelouw Book Barn in the Southern Highlands township of Berrima offers something unique. Seeped in tradition, this is a place to unwind, appreciate all things written and listen as the thousands of books on display divulge their narratives.

The Berkelouw family have been involved in book selling since 1812 with many generations experiencing the rich and at times deadly tapestry of world history. Initially trading in vellum-bound theology texts only and later joining the International Antiquarian Booksellers Association, all was bought to a tragic halt with the siege of Rotterdam during WW2. Sadly, all their stock was destroyed, including a bible thought to be the most valuable in Europe at the time. In 1948 a new direction and way of life ensued with the fourth generation of book-loving Berkelouws moving to Sydney to re-establish the business, thus beginning the Australian connection.

Over the years Berkelouw Books has moulded as the times have changed and in the fast paced world that we live in, now offers a cultural encounter that can be enjoyed by all. “People love a story and its history” says Katja Berkelouw as we chat near the 200 year old European Oaks that grace the country property. “We are more than just selling a book, we are selling the experience”. In fact Berkelouws were the first bookshops to have integrated coffee shops, and in Berrima they have now enhanced visitors’ experiences by diversifying their offerings and creating something more substantial.

Berkelouw Book Barn

In 2008, 5000 mature vines were planted in their vineyard, Bendooley Estate Wines. A growing entity in the wine world, their luscious grapes have already produced silver medalwinning chardonnay. The Bendooley Estate Restaurant offers wonderful meals and the coffee shop, also nestling in the barn, cascades outside allowing a latte to be enjoyed under the shade of billowing plane trees. Yet this does not occur without a certain number of challenges. “Australians are food obsessed and want to know where their food is coming from” says Katja. As a result, they source their food regionally whenever possible, and try to use locals when staffing. “It is important to get the dynamism right when staffing and as many young people want to go to Sydney for job opportunities [that] can sometimes prove difficult”. Obviously they have it right as the staff were friendly, helpful and knowledgeable.

Berkelouw Book Barn

Recognising the growing wedding market, it has also become a unique venue for 'big days', with vows exchanged on the verdant rose strewn lawn running down to the lake. "We like to be very involved in the wedding day experience” says Katja as we tour the beautifully nurtured gardens surrounding the ivy clad homestead. Most weddings take place on the lawn under the dream like ancient cypress, with everything done to ensure that the setting is beautiful and the event is personal. This obviously has a flow-on effect for local businesses. Hairdressers, florists, photographers and even regional bus lines have benefited from the change in direction that Berkelouws has undertaken, which in many ways was the only answer to the cost of maintaining this 200 acre historic property. “We are so lucky that we have been able to create a business for ourselves which benefits those around us, yet also lets others benefit from the beautiful environment. A quirky environment and a great product can reinvigorate a whole area”.

Berkelouw Book Barn

With cottage accommodation available for short term rental it seems they have met the needs of all. Originally the gatekeepers lodge, this restored two bedroom cottage is a cosy and contemporary base to experience the delights of the Book Barn and the beautiful Berrima region. Staying here or simply visiting, it is a wonderful opportunity to observe first-hand the joys that come with living (and running a business) in the country. “In this fast paced world history and tradition are becoming more important, and some people are even putting down their Kindles and the like. This is when there is a chance to experience a great quality of life and mix with interesting people from all backgrounds. People in the rural environment have more time for each other and are prepared to have a chat. Everyone knows the local mechanic and if you forget your wallet when shopping, it is never a problem to pick up the shopping now and come back later to pay. It seems that trust is instilled in them”.

I sit there listening to Katja, dreaming of children being children, of the freedom to roam outside for hours and days when everyone chatted over the back fence. It seems that by forging ahead on its business diversification, Berkelouw Book Barn actually gives everyone the opportunity to be part of the storybook of Australia’s rich history. Instant gratification has been replaced here by a sense of time and place. Colourful and informative, the books on display around the restaurant and fireplace speak of a past and a present that exists for all to enjoy.

Berkelouw Book Barn

Berkelouw Book Barn

Belinda Xia

Belinda Xia For issue 3, our Australia issue, we're playing just a tad with the Lodestars Anthology design. A big part of this plan is Sydney-based illustrator Belinda Xia. While we can't divulge any more (you've only got to wait until August for the magazine), we can share this interview with the effervescent Australian creative. Let's hope it inspires you to crack out the pencils and see the world in colour.

Belinda Xia

Where did you train and how did you come to be an illustrator?

I did a Visual Communications degree at uni but other than that I’m a self-taught illustrator. I always loved drawing from a young age but was encouraged to steer towards a more 'conventional' career. It took some experimentation to find a medium which I enjoyed (and was good at!) and it evolved from there. Illustrating was initially just an on-the-side creative outlet, but is fast becoming so much more!

Can you describe your style?

Clean, elegant and pretty. With pops of humour and silliness - I’m a sucker for a good pun.

Belinda Xia

What inspires your work?

Clean lines and beautiful details. Fashion is definitely an inspiration - I find the textures, shapes and forms so alluring and with a graphic design background, I like to look at composition (I particularly love white space) when putting my own works together.

I find illustrating in general allows a greater appreciation for details because you’re made to recreate someone else’s work and must represent it beautifully!

4) What is the best thing about your job?

Being creative on a daily basis and being able to find inspiration anywhere! I went to a herb garden workshop one weekend and left wanting to paint them all. Constantly evolving stylistically is another perk, I’m always learning - never sit still. However don’t be fooled, I also work extremely hard through long hours and sacrifices - but it’s worth it. I couldn’t do it without the support of my partner, family and friends.

Fashion and the natural world seems to infiltrate your work quite a bit - is this intentional and why does it play such an important role?

I’ve always loved fashion (like most little girls) and started off drawing things I couldn’t afford to buy - I had to have them one way or another! I suppose you tend to look for ways to combine the things you love so you can have them selfishly in one place. To be honest, flowers first featured in my works because I was rubbish at drawing them and wanted to practise - I can never do them justice!

Belinda Xia

Does Australia influence your work in any way?

I love drawing Australian fashion - does that count? We have a unique quirk and effortlessness in our shapes and style that I’m so proud of. I think the silliness in some of my works also comes from the great Aussie sense of humour.

Illustrating the Australian wildflowers in [the upcoming Australia issue] was actually a lot of fun - capturing the beauty of our own backyard!

Is there a creative community in Sydney?

Definitely! Perhaps it’s not as boisterous as say New York or Berlin, but Sydney is teeming with creative talent in our galleries, restaurants and shops. Brewery Yard Markets is a lovely boutique-feel market in the city which showcases beautiful work by some very talented artists. I find Sydney’s creatives are very supportive of each other and there’s a real community vibe.

Has there been a project (past, present or future) that you’ve particularly enjoyed?

My entire illustration career has been an absolute joy because it still surprises me that I can get paid to do something I love so much.

Pet commissions are particularly special because they come with a personal connection and story that I feel lucky to be a part of. I was recently commissioned to draw a one-eyed dog back when it had both eyes. So many interesting stories indeed!

What advice do you have for aspiring illustrators?

Start. Regardless of what your passion is! I umm-ed and aah-ed for so long, and now seeing how far I’ve come in the relatively short time - I wish I’d started sooner! If you’re motivated to do it in the evenings after eight hours at a desk job, you’ve definitely found your calling!

To learn more about Belinda, and order a print, click here.

Belinda Xia

Belinda Xia

Belinda Xia

Belinda Xia

Belinda Xia

Belinda Xia

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Saara Karppinen

Saara Karppinen The best thing about launching a travel magazine about place and people is that you cross paths with some immensely talented individuals with passions for paint, the unexpected and the world. London-based Saara Karppinen is one such person. We fell in love with her whimsical creations, all of which have a dream-like element and a distinct fondness for colour and material, meaning she was the perfect illustrator for our Scotland edition. We had a chat with the creative lass about her work, training and the joys of travel.

Saara Karppinen

Can you tell us a little about your training and artistic background?

I studied illustration at Camberwell College of Arts, where I learnt that the most important thing is to enjoy your work, and to always keep experimenting. It seems like a simple lesson, but it can be easy to forget. During university I did a lot of printmaking, mostly stone lithography. Though I’m not working with these techniques at the moment, they helped me to learn a lot about colors, how to build texture, and most importantly, patience.

How would you define your style?

I think everyone has their own natural style, and there isn’t really a need to ‘name’ it as such. Of course there are influences, but what I mean is that I’d rather focus on doing the work then analyzing what I’m going to call it afterwards.

What inspires your work?

I listen to a lot of podcasts, like Lea Thau’s Strangers, which is basically people telling stories about their lives. I’m interested by stories about people, but in my work I like to focus on a single moment. When I work, I imagine I’m painting the scene from the middle of a story, where you won’t know the beginning or the end, but you can get a sense of an atmosphere. So often, I will invent a story to go along with what I’m painting.

What do you love about your job?

Sometimes I can watch Buffy in the background while I work.

5) There is a certain innocence to your work - is this intentional and where does this come from?

I would say this is intentionally unintentional. I paint by what I call ‘working backwards’, which is painting on acetate so that the final image is the reverse of what I am looking at when I paint. In a sense, I keep myself in the dark from the final image, so that there are qualities that I can’t control. Sometimes I paint really small so that when I blow up the image the proportions are slightly odd and you can see all the fine brushstrokes and scratches. I try and work in a way where I am constantly surprised and allow ‘accidents’ to happen. I want my work to feel playful and a bit dynamic, which I guess is a kind of innocence.

Does travel influence your work in any way?

I grew up in five different countries, so I think it would be hard to sort out the start of the influence of ‘travel’ in any tangible way, but I’m sure it’s there. I’m interested in the natural curiosity people have when they travel, that kind of gentle wondering around and appreciating everything in a different way than you would in your own neighborhood. I have a lot of paintings of people and dogs just wondering around, which I suppose captures a bit of this sense.

Has there been a project (past, present or future) that you’ve particularly enjoyed?

I wrote and illustrated a comic for a competition which was supposed to be on the theme of ‘polar night’, but I got a bit carried away and it ended up being about some kind of space purgatory with dogs and 80’s starlets. Needless to say, the competition didn’t go so well, but I had so much fun with it. I think it was the first time I really worked with a long narrative, and I couldn’t really contain my enthusiasm.

What advice do you have for aspiring illustrators?

I spent a whole year trying to figure out what I thought ‘illustration’ is, and trying to adapt my work to suit this - whatever you do, don’t do this! The most important thing is that you enjoy your work, then other people will too. There isn’t much point in making work that you think is boring, because it will be so boring. And you don’t want to get stuck doing that.

Saara Karppinen

Saara Karppinen

Saara Karppinen

Saara Karppinen

Saara Karppinen