Lost in the ’70s

“For there is no friend like a sister
In calm or stormy weather;
To cheer one on the tedious way,
To fetch one if one goes astray,
To lift one if one totters down,
To strengthen whilst one stands”, Christina Rossetti

Photos taken in collaboration with Danielle and Nicole, two twins with a passion for vintage – in particular for the ’70s – and a very great sense of style indeed! Don’t miss to have a look at their online shop (https://www.depop.com/betty_berry), you’ll find incredible clothes and you’ll start thinking what to add to your wardrobe!

A special thanks goes also to the hair and make up artist Daisy Oldershaw and to Bianca Elgar (accessories and home designer) for allowing me to use her house for the photoshoot.

©2018 Flavia Catena

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Beate – Bianca Elgar’s Collection

“Whatever circumstances arise, do not plunge into either elation or misery, but stay free and comfortable in unshakeable serenity… and just as the sun shines freely through space, your compassion cannot fail to shine on all beings.”, a Tibetan saying, from the memoir of Beate Howitt, the beautiful, inspiring lady you can see in the photos below (I will probably dedicate another post to her amazing life, so stay tuned!). I had the big pleasure to know her and photograph her as muse of Bianca Elgar, a talented fashion and home designer based in Oxford (we recently found out we are also neighbours!). The cheerfulness of Beate, on set, was contagious, and the all team had so much fun while taking these photos that I will remember the day as one of the best of my photography year. Note: all the smiles and laughs you’ll see were totally spontaneous!

Model: Beate Howitt; Designer: Bianca Elgar (www.biancaelgar.com)

©2018 Flavia Catena

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Dancing souls

“Faeries, come take me out of this dull world,
For I would ride with you upon the wind,
Run on the top of the dishevelled tide,
And dance upon the mountains like a flame.” W. B. Yeats, The Land of Hert’s Desire

Another project about dance, grace, and beauty I have worked on with the amazing Travis Clausen Knight, James Pett, Chiara Favaretti and Steff D’Arsy, whose souls shine in every movement they make! Thank you to offer me yours talents, friendship and precious time! A special thanks also to Ryn Zhan for the beautiful make up!

©2018 Flavia Catena

 

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The forest girl

A rainy enchanted forest, a misty horizon, and a girl, white delicate skin and red cheeks, who walks wearing an embroidered cape and a long magic dress where flowers bloom around gold yarns. I see silent dreams follow her steps.

Model: Harriet Russell / Stylist: Tia Oguri / Make up artist: Daisy Oldershaw / Designer: Daisy Miller

©2018 Flavia Catena

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Big cat and Little cat

“If a fish is the movement of water embodied, given shape, then cat is a diagram and pattern of suble air.” Doris Lessing, On Cats

 

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Today I am happy to introduce you to these beauties: Big cat and Little cat (but they are called in many other different ways!). Harriet, the lady they love so much and from whom they are loved, rescued them years ago – they were living in very bad conditions with their previous owner – and gave them a beautiful home with a garden, in Oxford. Here I got the chance to meet the two, and to watch them happily sunbathing, playing behind the bushes and licking their lips waiting for dinner to be served. Such amazing animals are a joy for the eyes and the heart!

©2018 Flavia Catena

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Love come from rescued cats – Margot, Jerry and Monty

“What greater gift than the love of a cat?”, wrote Charles Dickens, and I truly believe it is hard to find something more special than an affectionate cat. Especially rescued cats can share so much love with their owners that you can feel it as soon as you meet them.
This happened also last week, when I visited Kelly and her two beautiful furry children, Margot and Jerry. They have been together for ten years now, and the three have a very special way to communicate to one another. While Margot is curious but a bit cautious, Jerry is more independent and definitively not interested in photography! It was lovely to see them play and at some point fight – in a gentle funny way – together, and follow their human mum even with a simple look, as to say: “we are waiting for you!”.
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Monty is an adorable twelve years old cat that Karen lovingly took from the street after he was abandoned from his previous owners. He is a very shy but gentle cat, with beautiful yellow eyes and a total black fur. He loves his human mum very much and he makes this clear kissing her and spending almost his entire day by her side. Unfortunately he was not confident enough in front of the camera to show me his unique way to say: “I love you!”. After all, precious things must be kept a bit secret to remain special.
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A huge thanks to Kelly and Karen to share with me these sweet moments!
©2018 Flavia Catena

Thread Tales Co. S/S 2018 Campaign

I am delighted to share with you these photos taken for Thread Tales’ Summer-Spring collection!

Model: Kim Nhung; make up and hair: Laura Onea; studio: Two Mag Pies Location, London

https://threadtalescompany.com/

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Cats and their humans – Becky and Lexi

More than one year ago, I decided to start a portrait project about cats and their female owners, being a cat lover myself, and also strongly believing in that sometimes saving bond between humans and pets. I took the first portraits, and then, overwhelmed by commissions, work, and other projects, I had to stop. But I was still looking forward to going back to that series of mine, and now it seems the time has come!

Last week I visited Becky Paton, a very talented artist who makes and successfully exhibits beautiful mosaics (please, have a look at her Instagram page @beckypatonmosaics). She lives with her family in the countryside just outside Oxford, and has a sweet and gorgeous cat named Lexi. He – yes, Lexi is actually a male cat, but the vet found this out too late for his name to be changed, as he really liked it! – was adopted by the family while he was still a fluffy little kitty. Now he is a four years old beautiful feline who loves to cuddle up next to his human mum at night, but also exploring the fields following his hunting instincts. I could see he was just impatient to go out and enjoy the sun, on the day we took the photographs. But I thank him and Becky for posing in front of my camera and sharing with me a bit of their happiness!

©2018 Flavia Catena

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Alisa – Graduation portraits in the snow

You would never think to see such an heavy snow at the beginning of March, when spring starts putting sprouts on branches and flowers on the ground, but yet it happened, and Oxford was covered with a white shining blanket for a few days two weeks ago. Alisa, who travelled with her family from Thailand, had her graduation ceremony in one of those days, but she was very brave to bear the cold and show her lovely smile in all the photos we took! Despite the difficulties, I am happy with the result, as snow definitively added a touch of romanticism to the Oxford landscapes.

©2018 Flavia Catena

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