Photography by Morgan Macleod
Model Amy Hancock @ CalCarries Models
Hair by Maria Simonetta
Makeup by Amie Smith
Styling by Lisa McCourt
Assisted by Gabi McDonald
Written by Morgan Macleod
Luz del Desierto, or Light of the Desert, is inspired by the collective of bright beautiful colors and life that find themselves here in the oasis of the desert known as Mildura. Abandoned, crumbling and beautiful in its derelict state, the cacti have been allowed to grow wild. That’s what I love about where I live; it’s the hidden spots, and the unexpected corners that really show what Mildura is to me.
Mildura is a regional town of 53,000 people in the North West of Victoria. Our hometown sits on the Murray River, and is a well regarded holiday destination for tourists. Known for long lazy summers, with scorching temperatures well over 40 degrees Celsius in the peak of summer. My childhood memories are full of searing hot pavements and sunburnt shoulders, cool dips in the pool in the early evening stretching to late at night. Barbecues as the sun went down with the sound of cicadas singing on the warm breeze until the nights stilled, and then the whirring of fans working to cool the still hot houses till the early hours of the morning.
The location of the shoot was one we had passed hundreds of times before. It is situated by the Murray River, which is the heart of Mildura. It’s a relic of the past. Once beautiful and well maintained, the beautiful plants provide a harsh beauty against the sandy rock wall.
This concept was brought full circle working with Amy Hancock, another local who has long since moved interstate. I have been fortunate enough to work with Amy several times now, her passion strength and beauty inspire me, and I am so blessed to have found her as a friend as well, not just a colleague.
Amy is an established model based in South Australia, having worked both nationally and internationally, she has packed a whole lot of life into a short few years, having traveled extensively overseas and worked with several well known photographers. Her dedication and professionalism have made her a favorite with many professionals, and her athleticism and her striking face lend themselves to this concept well.
The color palette is bright, fresh and exotic, contrasting with the crumbling wall and overgrown cacti. My stylist Lisa dressed Amy in amazing color and print, with structured pieces as well as some relaxed, sporty pieces. I love using smaller Australian brands in my shoots, there are so many amazing designers who deserve so much praise, the quality and finish on these pieces are exceptional, and really represent the Australian woman; strong, relaxed and effortless. Orange features heavily throughout the outfits. Orange represents creativity, invigoration and stimulation.
_MG_1971, _MG_1986, _MG_1992, _MG_1996 – Bra by Marlies Dekkers, Pants by Violet and I
_MG_2025, _MG_2045, _MG_2064, _MG_2066, _MG_2096 – Dress by The Fifth Label
_MG_2157, _MG_2209, _MG_2212 – Sports Bra by Lorna Jane, Pants by Finders Keepers, Shoes by Verali
_MG_2227 – Dress by May, Shoes by Verali
_MG_2340, _MG_2438, _MG_2456 – Dress by Isla by Talulah
_MG_2324 – Top by Finders Keepers, Shorts by Talulah
These images I wanted to reflect the beauty of a strong and fierce woman, women I identify with every day both personally and professionally. They prove to be a constant source of inspiration for me.
My team is an amazing bunch of exceptional women, all professionals in their respective fields. My world is bursting at the seams with beautiful and inspiring females; it is a humbling idea that these wonderful people lend their support to my crazy concepts and outlandish ideas time after time and has made me so grateful. I wouldn’t be anywhere without their ongoing and unwavering support.