Cory

Portrait Photographer Auckland

Cory

Himiona

Portrait Photographer Auckland

Olli Curry

Portrait Photographer Auckland

Nick

Portrait Photographer Auckland

Nick

My name is Nick and like every other person on Mother Earth, I fell into life totally unprepared for what my life might eventually become. My regrets (I’m sure like many others) I share a few, but the blessings I’ve received over following years have been many. While I could describe myself in many ways, maybe the most accurate would be that of an Adventurer. As I left school for the last time with the words of teachers ringing in my ears informing me that if I didn’t go on to university, I would ‘never amount to anything’..! Yet here I am after 30 years of traveling around the world (primarily on my own by choice), starting and running my own businesses, I realise now that the University of Life has enriched me as an individual, so very much more than any formal qualification could ever have.

Contrary to what we are all taught in school, ‘Life’ and what you make of it, and who we become, is determined by those experiences that we expose ourselves to. And what we eventually become determines what we are all eventually able to give back to the world, and particularly those around us.

As someone that had a passion for the ocean and riding waves from my earliest years, I still enter the ocean virtually every day regardless of the season or temperature. I embrace floating silently on my back alone for the sheer sense of peace and joy that it gives me. I can only imagine that is largely because we are all 60% made of water, and that being in the water is the closest I have come to that wonderful sense of ‘going home’. 

My life’s ‘career experiences’ have included working in construction and property development in New Zealand and Papua New Guinea, 8 years as a commercial fisherman on the Abrolhos Islands and 2 years as a full time gold prospector in Western Australia, being selected to appear one of the first Reality TV programs and starting a computer software import/export and distribution business at a time in the UK when I could barely use a computer, painting houses in Sweden during winters where each day only provided 2 – 3 hours of sunlight, time in the Canary Islands as a property consultant, and eventually back on the Gold Coast in Australia owning a 5 office Real Estate business taking Australian properties to sell in Japan. Today I own an online education business that I started nearly 10 years ago which makes a significant contribution particularly to young people with Special Educational Needs. In each of these involvements I never underwent any formal training, or had any qualification other than having a willingness and desire to ‘learn on my feet’. And if I can do this, so can anyone else; the only secret is “wanting it enough”.

If I had to highlight my single greatest achievement, it would be still being married after 25 years and fathering my wonderful children, and it is this that has been the most memorable and meaningful experience of all. In a time when the concept of ‘marriage’ appears to be less appealing for some, it has been and continues to provide as many joys as it does challenges. 

Apart from my love for the ocean, I have a passion for expressing myself through music and the words I write. I play a couple of instruments and have a passion for creating Melody. Music remains the single most powerful form of communication with just a small handful of different notes having the ability to bring tears to another person’s eyes. 

Through everything else, the single most important thing I would share is that we all have the ability to improve the world; just one person at a time, AND by being prepared to lead from the front.

Jesse Wynyard

Portrait Photographer Auckland

Jesse Wynyard is the creator at Light Warrior Heroes. He is transformational speaker, hip-hop artist and master coach at Jesse Wynyard, uniting everyday heroes and empowering them to become champions. “I help ambitious, purpose driven individuals win in their personal and professional life on their own personal path to greatness.”

Syd Breeze

Portrait Photographer Auckland

Hi my name is Syd Breeze, I had a bad incident happen to me when I just turned 21. I left work at 7:30pm, where  I was wielding fire extinguishers. I was half-way home driving through Hobsonville, tired and exhausted from work. I had recently just finished working on my car, a mini cooper, so I was quite excited to drive it. But then as I turned the ‘S bend’ a drunk driver couldn’t take the corner and came over to my side of the road. We had a head on crash, we were both doing around 60mph, the police told me that’s like hitting a brick wall at 120mph. I was a typical young driver and was not wearing my seatbelt. I remember hitting the breaks and everything slowed down, and my mind went crystal clear. I could see the drunk driver coming towards me, and thinking to myself ‘this is going to really hurt’. My mind went blank and dark, I got knocked out. When I woke up, I was looking over my unconscious body with the ambulance officers working on me. Then I realized I had lifted out of my body. There was no pain, no fear, I felt weirdly calm. Before I knew it, everything went dark again and I opened my eyes and they were pulling me out of the car and moving me to the ambulance. The first thing said to me when I woke up was ‘you’re very lucky to be alive’. I received just under 200 stitches from smashing my head into the window screen and scalping the top of my head, and then about another 20 stitches in my arms and legs. Luckily, I received no broken bones. One thing I learnt from this accident is how fast life can end, so enjoy it each day as it comes. I’ve maintained this attitude right up to 63 years old.

Raanan

Portrait Photographer Auckland

Marcus

Portrait Photographer Auckland

Chris

It feels like so long since you went away. We said we would do this together. Why did you have to leave?

I don’t feel strong enough to do this alone. I hide from it. I mask it. I wear a costume to be someone else. Someone happy. Like if no one can see the sadness then maybe I won’t feel it. But it stays. Someone said you must have been needed somewhere else. But who could need you more than we do.

She wants to know why you had to leave. I don’t know what to say. She wants to know when you’re coming home. I don’t have the words. She wants me to brush her hair the way you do. She wants me to do plaits but I don’t know how. She cuddles your teddy bear every night. We both do. She draws pictures of you. Pictures of our little family. We put them on the fridge and it breaks my heart. Why did you have to leave? 

———

It feels like so long since you went away. It’s been almost twenty years. I was angry then. It was never your fault. If you hadn’t left I wouldn’t have this strength. I wouldn’t be this man that I am. I am the lucky one. I don’t hide anymore. I’m not afraid of being hurt anymore. I’m not afraid to love wholeheartedly.

She’s no longer our little girl. She grew up so fast. I wish you could see her. She’s the most beautiful woman. A loving big sister. She reminds me of you. She has your smile. Your laugh. She’s not much older than you were when you left. You would be so proud of her. 

I still remember the day you left. I sat in the chair beside your bed and stroked your head. I told you I loved you but you had already gone. I’m sorry you had to go. I’m so happy our paths crossed. Our time seems so short but I will always be grateful for you. I love you. 

Chris

Studio Photography Auckland

Nude Photography Auckland

Taylor Blake

Nude Photography Auckland

Taylor Blake

Dana

Nude Photography Auckland

 

Nude Photography Auckland

Dana Costello

I had a beautiful golden childhood full of love, warmth and happiness. My mother got sick when I was eight with an autoimmune disease, she couldn’t walk. She was so unwell and needed around the clock care from my dad. Six months later my dad died. He was out tramping for the day with his friends, a young fit and healthy man. He had a heart attack and dropped dead. My world as I knew it exploded. My mum packed up and moved us to the West Coast of the South Island, to escape all the memories of dad. I was in a completely new town, no friends, no family and stuck with my bed ridden mother. By the age of nine I could cook a three course meal. Mum was too sick to feed me. I was in complete survival mode. Whenever mum would get up I would just want to hide, she was on over 15 different medications a day, she had road rage and would take it out on me. I solely bore the brunt of her pain. This was my reality all the way into my teenage years. When I was 13 our house burnt down and we lost nearly everything.

Again another massive loss and hurdle to conquer. When I was 16 I got extremely sick with meningococcal disease, it took months to be able to walk and move around properly again. It damaged my eyes and I needed glasses. I moved out of home at 16. I went back to Nelson to work for the summer and ended up staying. I would go to school during the week and work all of my weekends to be able to pay rent and afford food for the week. This was my reality for the remainder of high school. I had a lot of questions about religion, so after school I studied and got a diploma in biblical studies. But my true passion was to join the navy. My dad and brother were in the navy and from the age of 12 it was my dream. I joined at the age of 21 and haven’t looked back. I’ve now been in the navy for two years, pursuing the career of my dreams. I’ve met the man of my dreams and am so in love. For the first time in a long time I am happy, loved and appreciated. I don’t regret anything from my past, I wouldn’t change a thing. It has made me who I am today, a strong young woman.

Roma and Emmanuel

Nude Photography Auckland

Roma

I struggled with identity,
I still do, but I’m learning.

I’ve always struggled with mental health issues and after going through multiple violent trauma and being Passed around a very flawed mental health system, a few years ago finally I got diagnosed with borderline personality disorder, which is 110% a completely misunderstood disorder to say the least.

It can affect multiple aspects of your life and is different for everyone who experiences it. For me, my sense of self and emotional control and thought patterns are mostly affected.
Which means I can be very reactive to situations, sometimes more than what’s accepted by others and always more than I wanted to.
My thoughts can get mixed up because there are too many, or I have one thought that does not leave my mind and it can become an obsession.
Knowing who I am as a person and what I want can also be challenging. 

I teach children’s yoga and mindfulness as it was something that helped me when nothing else could and to hopefully set up our kids for an open minded self-accepting future with skills, tools and the ability to cope better with the roller coaster of our emotional stressful lives.

I like to model so I know exactly who to be at that moment.
I find it freeing, almost trapping myself in a ‘character’ or a ‘setting’ you could say.
For a short period of time I know what to do, who to be and how to do it.

I said yes to taking part in this display of beautiful women for the chance to feel like I am exactly who I am meant to be for a short period of time.
To empower other women to feel like they can be themselves not just for a short period of time but all of the time,
To feel beautiful and strong, ugly and weak, put together and messy all at the same time because that’s what life is and we should be so fucking proud of it.
You can’t have one without the other.
You may not be able to have everything you have ever wanted.
But you can have your own slice of perfection and that perfection is you.

Bare Truth

Michael

Portrait Photographer North Shore

Michael

Lance Betterton

Portrait Photographer Auckland

Lance Betterton

No interest in school. Wanted to be bad. Ran away from home, lying and stealing. A glue sniffer. In and out of jail. On the drugs and on the piss. Escaped from prison. Run with a gang. Fighting for the sake of fighting. Tattoos on my face. Over dosed on drugs. All this pretty much sums up my first 30 years on this planet. I thought this is me for the rest of my life. What a hopeless case!
Then someone believed in me and gave me a second chance. I never looked back. Been on the straight and narrow for 23 years now. Proof that it can be done.

Lance Betterton.

Mason With

Portrait Photographer Auckland

William Maealiuaki Tu’ihalafatai Taufa

Portrait Photographer Auckland

William Maealiuaki Tu’ihalafatai Taufa

Malo e lelei, Greeting.My name is William. My middle name is Maealiuaki Tu’ihalafatai and last name Taufa. I’m 38 years old. I’m Tongan. My father from Hofoa, Tongatapu Is. My mother from Futu, Niuafo’ou Is. I was born and raised in Angaha, Futu, Eua Is. I’m the fourth out of six. I have two sisters and three brothers.
I married to this beautiful lady named Lupe Tu’atonga. God blessed my wife and I with four beautiful children. Two boys and two girls.
All my tattoos represented my family, especially my beautiful wife and kids.
I love art and sport. I love music. I love food. My favourite food is taro leaves, lamb chopped with coconut. My big dreams when I was a kid was to be an architect and a photographer cause’ I love art. I like to have an admiration and ask myself questions for looking at the beauty of the creation of our God. I always thank God every day for beauty He created in us. How Great Ghou Art.

Vincent

Auckland Portrait Photographer

Clinton

Auckland Portrait Photographer

Mike Watson

Auckland Portrait Photographer

Mike Watson

My story is full on, but it’s a journey which has made me stronger and got me to where I am today.

It began with my move up north to live with my then girlfriend.  What I thought was going to be a mutual partnership turned out to be an expectation to become an instant dad overnight which at the age of 30 I wasn’t ready for.  I was suddenly paying $500 p/wk in rent, working all day to bring home the paycheck, cooking and cleaning, making dinner – doing the works without any reciprocation.  While I don’t mind contributing in a relationship, these expectations were too much for me, especially as I was recovering from stomach cancer at the time.  The relationship deteriorated, resulting in me being kicked out overnight, causing me to live in my truck for a week without food or money.

I took a job that paid me 50% less than normal.  It was disheartening, but I had to survive.  This job also meant working 40hrs a week, but only getting paid enough to cover rent and buy five pies a week to keep me fed.  This was during lockdown, so I ended up moving 4 times over this period in a state of alert.

The day before my birthday, after driving from Mangawhai to the Mount to collect some belongings, I crashed my Ute after doing a 9hr day on the building site and 4 hours of driving.  Along with the exhaustion, alcohol was a factor. I made a poor choice, but at the time, all I could think of was driving home or paying for a taxi and going hungry for a week.  I chose to ensure I was still fed so I had the energy to work and get back on my feet. It was the wrong choice.  When I crashed my truck, I died and had an out of body experience.  I flew around my truck looking at my body as it hung over the steering wheel for 3 minutes.  That’s a moment I’ll never forget.

As a result of the crash, I lost my license, my transport, my tools and my job (around $70K worth) and went hungry for another two weeks.  To add to the stress, I had $1000 worth of bills to find a way to cover, with no way of working to help ease the burden.

I knew my life couldn’t continue on this trajectory.  I needed to make some positive changes.  I made a choice.  I decided in addition to focusing on my building business, I also needed to focus on my health, both mentally and physically.  I had gone through a lot, including working 18-hour days for the last year without any help of support from anyone, knowing I was very lucky to be alive.

I also needed a more permanent place to live. I don’t know if it was the negativity energy that was hanging around me at that time but I couldn’t seem to find a place to be settled.  I kept moving into places that didn’t last and having to move out again.  The repetitive cycle of sleeping in my car, going hungry and living paycheck to paycheck continued.

While this was happening, my business was taking off.  I had 6 staff and 3 jobs on the go.  But running a business while living in your car which was parked outside your gym, is not sustainable.  I started expanding my business with the hope to sell cabins to pay for a place to live, food on the table and a new truck.  My hard work paid off and I successfully expanded my business, my health improved, and I found a new place to live (I move in next week).  I don’t know what the future holds, but I do know that I have lived a lifetime in the last few years.  But I have also come out stronger.  I have never stopped moving forward, and by refocusing my life, I have become someone that I am proud of today.

Lachland

Portrait Photographer Auckland

Lachlan

Growing up with a father as a mariner, the sea has always been a big part of my life. Very early on I knew it would be an aspect of my career and I’ve now been working in the off shore industry for 10 years. This has a significant effect on my relationships with my family, friends and partner.

I have decorated my body with reminders of things that are important in my life, inclusive of shared tattoos with my siblings and friends, memoirs of pets and references to the journeys my job has taken me on. The swallows are significant in representing the distance I have traveled at sea and encouraging the safe return home, mirroring the swallows constant return to their home land.

The sacrifice of working away is not for everyone and the toll it can have on the body both mentally and physically is not for the faint hearted.