Created during the pandemic, photographer Gwenaëlle Trannoy and stylist Elle Britt’s new publication pays homage to nature, regrounding and “coming back to the earth”
Gwenaëlle Trannoy and Elle Britt first met while working for two of the most respected names in fashion. Both were first assistants; Trannoy to photographer Harley Weir, and Britt to stylist Jane How. The pair would find their paths crossing frequently over the years, though it took a while before they were able to truly bond away from their hectic, absorbing jobs. “I think Britt and I always knew that we would work together down the line,” says Trannoy today.
It would take the pandemic – and the forced repose of the first lockdown – for Trannoy and Britt to make this collaboration a reality. It was necessary: after pouring so much time and effort into actualising the immense creative visions of their former employers, they were both in desperate need of a reset. “The pandemic gave us a chance to take a step back from work and the restraints of the fashion industry,” Trannoy tells AnOther. “We both wanted to break away from working in somebody else’s world for so long. It was clear that we needed some kind of rebirth to become our own people again.”
The result is a sensuous new zine, titled Something About Nature, Something About Being Reborn. Rooted in the idea of “rebirth and awakening”, the publication is a visual celebration of nature; of “coming back to the earth”, regrounding and standing still, in a world that encourages you to never stop moving.
France-born Trannoy worked on the photography for the zine, with Britt taking on the styling. “Everything always starts with casting for me,” says Trannoy, whose earthy, romantic images show a group of (mostly) women cavorting in grass, fields and mud. “I often think of the models as my muses, spending heaps of time researching them and wondering how they would want to be portrayed. I’m not a very social person myself but I am very interested in people and I guess I live through them in a vicarious way.” For Australia-born Britt, the styling focus was on mood, and evoking a sense of free-spirited physicality. “I wanted it to feel free and open, hence why we shot a lot of nudes,” she says. “I wanted the clothes to sit in with the idea of a cleansing wash, so I wanted the styling to feel fluid, like water.”
The self-published zine, which is available to buy now from Claire de Rouen, was a joy-filled experiment between the two, and – despite the bleak backdrop of a global pandemic – marked a personal rebirth for both of them. “For me, the pandemic made it possible to have the space mentally to be inspired by everything around us, and by my own experiences which I was going through, the change and the forced rest which the universe and the world needed,” adds Britt. “It was overdue.“
Something About Nature, Something About Being Reborn is available from Claire de Rouen books, in a limited edition of only 100 copies.