From the category archives:

A Handsome Project

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The very talented illustrator ad creative Erika Rivera has created an amazing rendition of her favourite pieces from our Handsome collections. We caught up with Erika and she told us all about her love for drawing, illustration, design and everything beautiful.

We adore your renditions of our swimwear. Tell us a bit about yourself. Where are you from and what is your background?

Well, I’m originally form San Diego, California where I went to school at FIDM for Product Development. I recently moved to Syracuse, New York to be with my soon to be husband. Moving from the West Coast to the East Coast was a huge change for me especially climate wise. This was going to be my first winter ever I I’m glad to say I’m still alive. Since moving I have really focused on the basic skills for my drawings. During winter I stayed inside most days due to the winter but I found it as a blessing in disguise. I was able to sit down and draw until my little heart was content. I’ve always loved fashion and my friends would always want to pick an outfit for them.

Since I wanted to do something with my fashion background I knew drawing illustrations would be perfect. I get to look at outfits pieced together by bloggers, runway shows, and many brands on the market. I decided illustrating was my way to express myself and put a fun spin on clothes. I get excited whenever a new project lines up because I’m able to share my passion with others. Plus, I love getting the client’s reaction once they receive the final product.

Many artists draw on the elements that surround them for creativity, what are some of your inspirations?

For me to be inspired it starts with a simple walk outside. Just taking in a breath of fresh air gets my wheels going. I try to take in as much nature that surrounds me and then I find that my mind starts creating. Another way I get inspired is to be by the beach. When I was in San Diego the beach was my safe haven from anything that was happening in life. I loved listening to the waves, feeling the sand, and that powerful sun. Even imagining that I’m there will do. Then I start sketching and figuring out the movement of a garment when looking at photos. Earth is my muse.

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When did you first discover you had this creative talent? What made you pursue this?

The very first time I found myself intrigued with art was 3rd grade. We had to draw a picture of a how to get out of a house fire safely. My picture won throughout all the elementary schools and got recognition from the local fire department. This was a huge deal to me. Once I found my creative side I never wanted it to disperse. My dad is very creative and an amazing artist. He would draw my brother and I like it was second nature. He tells me I get my artistic side from him. I definitely agree. As I got older I started getting into clothes and fell in love with the concept of creating yourself from the outside. I was always checking out what the classic pieces were to have in a wardrobe and what to wear during the seasons. Whenever I would go shopping my dad would always be there. He has a lot to do with my artistry. Overall my family was behind my every decision.

How has social and digital media helped you to share your talent? How important has this been?

Oh my gosh!! Big time!! Social media is the main reason I’m able to share my fashion illustrations with the world. Instagram is my biggest help to show what I do. Being able to reach other all over is completely incredible. I’m very blessed to live during a time where technology is mainstream. I love having access to reach out to people in the palm of my hand. Literally. There is a massive support team through social media and reading the positive feedback touches my heart. I also stumble upon other artists and its life a family reunion where you have no idea who anyone is but can connect so easily with them. When I met new artists from any industry I embrace them. And stay connected is so important! I mean we have no excuse to send a thank you or a hello to someone anymore. I’m very thankful to have social media in my life. Sometimes I do need to put the phone down though and be present.

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Do you have a favourite artist? If so who and why?

I would have to say Karl Lagerfeld and Stella McCarthy. Karl Lagerfeld has revamped Chanel and added a modern spin on every collection. I never get bored with anything he gets his hands on. He will mix the timeless classics with an unexpected twist. And come on, everyone loves a great plot twist to a story. Now Stella McCarthy perfectly captures what a women is all about…Confidence. The simplicity and femininity of her garments are flawless. You’re able to use a coat from a past collection and pair it with a blouse from her 2014 summer collection. She never misses a beat. I would love to wear everything she’s created.

Where to from here? What big plans do you have in the mix?

Well, I’m going to continue practicing everyday. I want to make sure I’m persistent in enhancing the basics of my skills. I want to work with other brands, designers, and fashion bloggers to create illustrations that will be very special. When I make my place in this fashion world I would be thrilled to work with magazines and have my illustrations hanging up in a museum one day. Could you imagine!? I want to show girls that dreams can come true with hard work and never saying No! Collaborating is what I love doing. I want to create, inspire, and imagine everyday.

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From all of your renditions of We Are Handsome (all are amazing) which one was your favourite to sketch and why?

My favorite rendition to sketch was the Landing Scoop one piece that shows the backside. I usually illustrate forward and three-quarter poses but this backside is my favorite. It’s playful, sexy, and fun. The colors of that swimsuit were my favorite. The way the plane is about to land with the palm tress around it reminds me of home. You can pair this one piece with a fabulous floppy hat and look stunning by the poolside, beach, or relaxing in a hammock.

If you had to choose one print/design to wear from our latest collection what would it be and why?

Hands down the Aloha string bikini. Love the colors, print, and everything about it! I’m a bikini kind of gal and this screams Erika! It would be perfect for my honeymoon coming up in a month. Plus, I think my fiancée would love to see my strutting my stuff in this little number. Incredible!

How can we find and follow you?

My coming along website: www.erikalynndesigns.com

Follow me on Instagram: @erikalynnrivera

 

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Here at WAH we love our jewellery. Rings, cuffs, necklaces, we have a slight obsession. Pair this with an affinity towards animal print…..like you didn’t notice already…and you have the perfect combination.

This year we teamed up with the talented Alex Smyth-Kirk from boutique jewellery label Vera Xane for a very handsome collaboration. First starting her studies of gold and silver smithing at the young age of 17, Alex has always had a passion for jewellery and the creation of beautiful unique pieces. Inspired by pop culture, rock n roll, innovative fashion trends and cultural architecture, Alex took on the challenge of creating her own label in 2011, having nothing but success since.

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Her talent caught our eye so much that we decided to work with Alex to help provide the final touches on our latest campaign shoot Oddessey Rising in The Maldives as well as creating custom made WAH inspired pieces for our runway ready looks at Mercedes Benz Fashion Week. The runway collection featured pineapple rings, birds of prey necklaces, cuff like belts with a fierce rendition of our tiger print, tropical palm trees and watermelons for earrings and quirky lobsters to make a statement. Each piece matched the essence of what We Are Handsome are all about and added to the fun, summer vibe of our runway.

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Keep up to date with everything Vera Xane by following the labels instagram @veraxane and jump on the website.

 

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We caught up with the gorgeous and ever talented artist Jessica Guthrie, who recently sketched her own renditions of our latest collection The Tropic Of Babylon. We asked a few questions about her life as a creative artist, here’s what she had to say:

We absolutely love your renditions of our Tropic of Babylon collection. Tell us a bit about yourself? Where are you from? What is your background?

Originally from Melbourne, my background is in fashion design and production, both mainstream and made-to-measure. I moved to Sydney 8 & 1/2 years ago with my husbands job relocation, which allowed me to start a new venture and open up a vintage clothing business in Surry Hills called Coco Repose. I remained creative by sourcing vintage and antique clothing and accessories to sell in my boutique. This also drove my inspiration for my own limited edition range of clothing using vintage fabrics and trims.

Fashion, design and history of bygone eras are a love of mine, but I wanted to create more and have always known that I wanted to eventually step into the world of fine art and illustration. I have always tried to dabble and keep up with life drawing and art, but a year and half ago I had a bit of a ‘light bulb go off in my head’ moment and decided I could follow my dream NOW and not wait. So I closed my business to study art at the Julian Ashton art school in Sydney.

As of January 1st 2014, I put the self imposed challenge out there to start a blog and produce a ‘sketch a day’. This was to create a profile online for myself and to be able to collaborate with other business’. It also gives me freedom to create quick images each day with anything that takes my fancy on that given day. It is challenging, but the feedback is positive and exciting. And after this year I hope to develop these quick sketches into larger artworks after finding out what works and inspires me the most.

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When did you first realise you had this creative talent? What made you persue this?

I have always had a love of drawing from a very early age. Even in primary school my projects always had to be the largest, most illustrated, collaged, tea stained – creative! I used to spend hours on pretty borders and many more simply sketching and colouring in. I can still remember when I was 8 years old, my grandparents gave me a 72 set of Derwent pencils which went a long way to fuelling my creative dreams. Working in the fashion industry gave me a creative stepping stone to be creative in a career that allowed me to design and travel, but also give me important business skills.

Tell us about some of your inspirations? What really drives you?

I am naturally a very driven person, there are never enough hours in the day! I have always been inspired by art and the creative process, and particularly fashion and the history of different eras. Travel gives me a lot of inspiration and I have been fortunate to travel through work which has opened my eyes and inspired me. In particular, Paris is my favourite destination and I will be headed there in July purely for an inspiration and art related trip!

I am a bit of a bowerbird, I collect everything! I pour of fashion magazines, I love visiting art galleries, but even everyday items and nature inspire me, I am always collection feathers on walks and looking at things around me for textures and design. I feel like I can find inspiration everywhere, If only there were more hours to create! – Oh and I am a little obsessed with Pinterest!

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Do you have a favourite artist? If so who and why?

Hmm… my all time favourite artist/design is Alexander McQueen and currently Sarah Burton, I simply adore her creativity and style and courage in design! Purely from an art perspective, I am drawn to Degas and Rodin for their subject matter, line and sculpture. I can’t wait to get back to Paris to visit Rodin’s garden again, and to sit with my sketchbook and just draw!

You are clearly talented and have received a positive response in social media, how has the impacted how your work is received?

Social media is now such a powerful tool. Having worked in my own business I can recognise just how much this can impact on an individuals profile. There are so many talented artists out there and social media is a fantastic way to build an awareness of an individuals work. For me, it is a process of putting myself out there, and receiving feedback (good or bad) to fuel me on my journey and validate a change in career direction. Creative careers can be quite solitary at times, and it is amazing how instant positive feedback from instagram or Facebook can keep pushing me and encourage me to create. It is also a great way to be able to connect with other business’ and to show them an instant profile of your work.

Where to from here? What big plans do you have in the mix?

From here I plan to keep studying and refining my art skills. I would love to collaborate with other creative business’ on illustrated product and fashion. My long term plan is to create pieces of art using vintage and antique pieces that I have collected over many years as my inspiration. I have a story for each piece, which I hope to be able to convey through my art. I am open to where the road leads for me which is daunting but super exciting! Being a Saggitarius, I am always up for the adventure that lies ahead, it is the unknown that excites me. I do know that if I could draw, paint and illustrate everyday of my life, I would be one happy fulfilled girl!

I am glad to have had the experiences I have had in fashion and business, I feel like it has given me a great set of skills to work from, and a clear view on what inspires me. Now having made the decision to pursue my love of drawing and painting, I know that I am on the right track of pursuing my absolute passion!
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What made you choose We Are Handsome as a part of your inspiration and what is your favourite sketch of the renditions?

Having a fashion background, I love to be inspired by creative fashion and was drawn to ‘We Are Handsome’ because of the unique imagery and themes favoured. I think WAH designs are bold and fun, and typify a creative process that is not always evident in the fashion industry. They are unique, and give your customer a statement about their own choice of style.

My favourite rendition sketch is ‘The Voyeur’ leggings – I love the colour and design, and I am particularly drawn to colourful feathers for painting and drawing!

If you had to choose one print/design to wear from our latest collection what would it be and why?

Ooh tough! Do I have to pick one??? I would choose ‘The Bahamas’ scoop one piece. Firstly I am always drawn to anything pink and flamingoes, and I could absolutely see myself wearing this by the pool to my Bali holiday in a couple of weeks time. I could then also wear it as a body suit with a skirt over the top out for afternoon drinks – win win! X

How can we find and follow you?

You can view my work on my wesbite www.thecolourofwhimsy.com.au

Follow me on Instagram @thecolourofwhimsy

Like my FB Page The Colour of Whimsy

Get Interest with Pinterest @colourofwhimsy

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It seems as though this Frozen Yogurt aka FROYO craze just keeps getting bigger and bigger. Look I am not complaining, it has certainly made a feature in my summer diet over the last two summers. Who am I kidding? I FROYO all year round. So much so, that the term FROYO itself has made the rather odd but occasional transition from a noun into a verb. “Oh hey I am just going to go FROYO, want to come?” “Do you FROYO?” “Of course I FROYO!” Well now you can FROYO yourself at home with my delicious popsicle recipe. So prepare yourselves for a damn delicious summer treat with my HANDSOME POPS OF FROYO.

What you will need:

1-2 cups of organic plain or vanilla yogurt
Half cup of mixed summer fruit eg Berries, Peach, banana, watermelon, Mango
1 tablespoon of Honey
½ tablespoon of lemon juice (optional)
6-8 small paper cups
Foil
Wooden popsicle sticks
Blender

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What you will need to do:

1. Add selected fruits, honey and lemon juice, to the yogurt in a blender. Blend until desired consistency.
2. Put the paper cups onto a plate or a flat tray. Cut strips of foil big enough to cover each cup individually.
3. Pour mixture into the cups at about ¾ full. Add left over pieces of fruit if desired.
4. Once the cups are filled cover each cup with foil and make a small slit in the centre of the foil where the wooden popsicle stick will go. This will help to hold the popsicle stick in place while the yogurt freezes.
5. Add the popsicle sticks and place the FROYO pops into the freezer. Once your FROYO Pops are done, just peel back the foil and paper and enjoy! Simple, easy, fun and delicious.

So there you have it. FROYO has made its way into the hearts of people all around the world and now you can have it whenever and however you want.

Now remember to keep up to date with everything We Are Handsome by subscribing to our latest updates from the WAH Digest and by following us on social media @wearehandsomeswimwear @wearehandsome.

 

Divine Wanderer

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We are excited to present the next installment of The Handsome Project. Each month we’ll showcase an amazing young photographer who blows our minds, shoots our stuff and is all together fantastic. Read on to see the rest of Amanda & Chris’ WAH photoshoot and interview…

What was the concept of the shoot?

Chris and I have worked together this year creating images focused on our pure love for the outdoors. When we came together to create some images for We Are Handsome, we were very conscious in our intentions to focus on using bold, saturated tones, as well as capturing and preserving the underlying core essence of the We Are Handsome brand. The sweeping beaches, sheltered coves and raw headlands surrounding Sydney proved the perfect backdrop against which to juxtapose dominant, physical lines with the vibrant tones and streamlined details of the swimwear pieces.

Tell us a bit about yourselves?

AB: I have been involved in sport since the age of 3 and have always had a passion for healthy and active living. My background in gymnastics and athletics led me to find pole vault, where I represented Australia at the World University Games in Belgrade in 2009 and the Delhi Commonwealth Games in 2010. Chris and I actually met because of athletics!

Following the games in Delhi I had plans to prepare for the Olympic Games in London. In 2011 I was diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue, which forced me to retire from pole vault. This turned my life around and for a long while I felt lost.

In the last year I have really focused on living the most happy, healthy and active life possible. A year ago I found yoga (a form of exercise that could help my chronic fatigue symptoms), which has really helped me in my transition into normal life after being an elite athlete for so many years. I have also taken the time to educate myself about nutrition and food and have discovered how important this is for our health and wellbeing.

I am now a pole vault coach at the Western Australian Institute of Sport. I absolutely love it, it allows me to pass on my knowledge and see athletes master their skill and fulfill their dreams in sport. For my own well being I love keeping active and I try to do as many different sports and exercises as I can. I am involved in running the Perth Nike Run Club every week, which I combine with yoga, strength training, bike riding, surfing, gymnastics and anything else that comes my way.

I really believe variety in life is essential, and this applies to everything including food, exercise, mental stimulation and social experiences. We need a balance and I try to channel this through my pictures on my instagram and facebook accounts. The work Chris and I have done in recent months has really captured some amazing moments.

CL: I had a pretty active childhood, you would have found me on the monkey bars, the tennis court, rugby field or on the athletics track. I found a talent for running at high school and was lucky enough to compete at national level for a few years. I dabbled in rugby for a few seasons, but I returned to running after getting belted by overweight forwards a few more times than I enjoyed.

I traversed the traditional route after school and studied finance and accounting at university. I worked in the corporate world for close to a decade, but eventually left it in the rear view mirror to pursue full time commercial, advertising photography. Creating something that matters and chasing things you love ultimately proved more important to me.

The athletics community is fairly tight-knit in Australia, I met up with Amanda earlier this year to collaborate and decided to work together long-term to build a platform to help and inspire others. I love her positive attitude to everything, and it’s been an easy partnership.

What is your photography history Chris?

CL: I had my start in photography at an early age. For as long as I can remember, I’ve been surrounded by cameras. I was born in the 80’s, we were the last of the film generation, long before the internet had arrived and mobile camera technology was the norm. I carried my camera everywhere, before you could be labelled a trendy hipster. I found I always had a point-and-shoot lying at the bottom of my track bag and would snap candids at the running track, eventually progressing to the competition arena. Many of my friends were sponsored athletes, and I began shooting images off the beaten path, travelling to remote locations with the specific intention to chase and create unique and captivating images. My work began being published in print and online, and a number of shoe and apparel companies began noticing my work.

I dabbled on the internet in the late 90’s, I taught myself how to code at the age of 11. The advent of social media, mobile communication and web 2.0 have been powerful vehicles with which to transport my images and voice across the globe. The raw image will always make my heart beat faster, and I’ve always been big on producing and sharing interesting and unique content, and helping others in the industry.

 What makes you tick?

AB: Being around wonderful people. My family and friends give me energy and make me happy. If you are surrounded by positive, motivating and inspirational people it is really contagious and you have no other option but to feel amazing.

CL: I love the collaborative and the creative process. I’m a strong advocate of shooting personal work, images that you’re passionate about, with no underlying agenda, client or creative directive. Everyone owns a camera and is a photographer these days, and it’s an amazing time for the industry, but being unique will set you apart from everyone else in the industry and lets you stand out from the crowd.

Where to next?

AB: Chris and I have a great friendship and we really enjoy working together. There are definitely plans to continue our work and to just keep discovering new and exciting concepts. Each time we come together I feel like our images are better than the time before so I can’t wait to see what the future holds!

I am also currently developing a website with my partner to share my knowledge and experience of health and exercise. Chris’ images will definitely be a centerpiece and these will be combined with a blog and compilation of food, fitness, wellbeing and motivation. I want to show people that healthy and active living doesn’t need to be boring and that it can be achievable through simple changes.

Photography: Chris Lew
Model: Amanda Bisk

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