Fall in love, not in line | Guest post by Zoe Pollitt and Natasha Hasemer from eskimo
Thanks so much to our favourite bookstore Kinokuniya for inviting us to participate in their blog, and for stocking our limited edtion book. We hope it inspires many future creative leaders.
Destiny? Serendipity? I do believe the universe speaks to us and the creation of ‘Fall in love, not in line’ is as much about listening to our hearts as it is about our journey so far.
21 years ago Tash and I took a leap of faith and ventured into business together with a vision to build a creative agency and design studio working collaboratively with our clients in the fashion, luxury and lifestyle space. With a couple of Macs, a massive dose of ambition and a studio in my parent’s garage, ‘eskimo’ was born.
Our friendship was formed back in the college days, studying a BA in Design (Visual Communication) at UTS in Sydney, and in 1990 we were both fortunate enough to be selected to do an exchange to study at St Martins College of Art and Design in London. We spent the next 6 months together, and it was during this period that you could say our minds were both literally and figuratively blown. It was the 90’s in London, the height of rave culture and the indie scene. There were tiny dance clubs with a crazy mix of hip-hop, soul and dance music. St Martins was a global melting pot of incredible talent in fashion, art and design, everything we’d learned and all of our senses were being challenged. It was a long way from the sheds on the docks that were then the UTS design campus adjacent to the old White Bay Power Station in Glebe.
They were our formative years, and on our return to Sydney I remember my perspective on the world dramatically changed. Our minds were opened to pioneers such as Fabien Baron, April Greiman, Neville Brody, David Carson, Peter Saville and Vaughan Oliver.
There was this transmedia post-modernism thing going on with the rise of grunge. The digital world was rapidly growing and this was changing everything, particularly design.
Both Tash and I started our careers in magazines and in 1993, we found ourselves working side-by-side in the Art Department at Vogue Australia. It was the heyday of editorial design, there was a publication for everything, and we were true magazine junkies. I still have a garage full of old editions to prove it. We worked with inspiring and powerful women and mentors such as Nancy Pilcher, Kirstie Clements, Cathy Shields, Amanda Ducker, Karin Upton Baker, Catherine Hanger, Marion Hume, Alison Veness, Judith Cook, Victoria Collison, Stephanie Darling, Marion von Adlerstein, Edwina McCann and Jillian Davison.
All these women contributed to our belief that women can do anything. We were fortunate to experience this culture, as it certainly wasn’t the norm out there at the time.
Tash and I worked well together. Our five years at Vogue was testament to that. We were connected, maybe a little crazy, but we felt the world was boundless, and opportunity was knocking. Our first eskimo client was The Artist Group, and we were moonlighting with stylist Mark Vassallo (now a brilliant Creative Director in his own right, who we’ve collaborated with many times since) designing a book to showcase their creative talent. In today’s start-up terms it would be labelled ‘proof of concept’. There was a massive opportunity to work with brands who were looking for designers with fashion and luxury expertise, and we applied this lens across industries.
The eponymous Australian Style Magazine published by the entrepreneurial Andrea Horwood was one of our foundation clients, and as Art Directors of the publication, it enabled us to continue our passion for editorial design while working with brands such as Country Road, Herringbone, Jigsaw and Sheridan. This soon grew to enduring client relationships with many Australian clients, most notably Oroton and Witchery who we worked with for many years. We’ve included some of our favourite campaigns and images, it was hard to edit it down, but we only had 398 pages!
In 2000 we were invited back to Vogue Australia as Creative Directors under the helm of Kirstie Clements, to completely redesign the magazine, and help transition a new art department. There’s some pages in there from the Vogue days, as well as some shots from the art department… If only the walls could speak!
The book collects together some of our proudest moments as well as a sneak peek behind the scenes of a busy creative studio, and some of our many shoots. We’ve divided it up by our values of Truth, Love, Spirit and Vision a framework that includes out takes, and work from the cutting room floor, some process work and of course the amazing team and the antics that contributed to our awesome culture.
This book was truly a labour of love, a year in the making, and thankfully at a time when we could devote ourselves fully to its creation while on sabbatical. It’s rare to have time to stop, reflect, and explore what’s next. Let’s see where our hearts take us…
Fall in Love, Not in Line
Natasha Hasemer and Zoe Pollitt
RRP $74.99 | Art Month Price* $59.99
Signed copies available!
eskimo: a retrospective of an Australian creative agency and design studio. Love. Truth. Spirit. Vision. Two women at the helm of eskimo, a leading design and creative agency in Australia decide to take a step back and celebrate 20 years of creativity through a deluxe 384 page retrospective.
Natasha Hasemer and Zoë Pollitt, co-founders of eskimo, have focused their business in the highly desirable, fashion, retail, property and luxury sectors. Having spent their eary careers working side by side in the Art Department of Vogue Australia, they developed a somewhat utopian vision of a community where creatives of all disciplines could work collaboratively to deliver incredible outcomes.
This book is a peep behind the scenes, some memories from the vaults, and a slice of the incredible work that the eskimo team has created with their clients over the past 20 years. It’s a wonderful a rmation that women can achieve anything… and have a lot of fun along the way!