Jane Sahhar is co-founder of Friendie and guardian of the brand's look and feel. Having modeled in front of the camera in early Friendie shoots, Jane now directs the creative team, bringing her Friendie vision to life.
"Capturing the Friendie look is all about freshness and the natural glow and happiness of someone who’s outdoors loving life, feeling good, listening to music. It’s all about the Friendie energy. Friendie is with them everywhere from the gym to work to home. We want to capture the warmth and connection we feel in the brand.
"It was pretty magical being on location in Sydney as everything came together. A shoot is always a lot of work in advance and a lot of worry because you don’t know how it’s going to turn out, especially when you are meeting new people, putting together a new crew and seeing how they interact.
"The team was just incredible. Everyone was happy, open, engaging and kind and made the whole experience so memorable. It was beautiful to see people working together and appreciating each other and creating special moments. The team had the Friendie feel. It was really like hanging out with a great bunch of hardworking friends, and then making some pictures along the way!
"Of course, Raluca is beautiful but her personality is just so easy and happy and her work ethic is incredible. She took every note and delivered flawlessly. It was kind of amazing to watch her, she was one of those models who just nails it. Until you have watched a really top international model at work, you don't understand that it's the tiniest movements and the tiniest behaviours that make a difference in the shot. It takes so much more than beauty.
"Several times during the day I had to pinch myself to check that the images I had imagined for months were really coming to life. There were so many wow moments for me: seeing James’ gear and all the set up, the amazing array of clothes that Emma had pulled to bring my ideas to life and watching Liane perfect the flawless makeup looks throughout the day and then bringing Shimmer Squad magic for the party looks. It was a day full of little flutters of happiness where I just knew that great images were being created and memories were being made.
"My favourite moment of the shoot was the last few shots where the sun was dappling through the palm trees and the girls were dressed in really cool festival outfits that Emma had sourced and the girls had amazing makeup by Liane. It felt like the wrap party at the end of the shoot even though we were still working.
"It was a really happy moment and a great way to finish a really long day. We had tunes and sunshine and sat beside palm trees by the pool! It was a really different look to anything we had shot during the rest of the day, but that’s what the Friendie lifestyle is. Music carries through every moment of our days, from the nine to five work and going to the gym to weekends away at festivals in the sun, and back to routine.
"The adventure didn’t end there. The photographer James invited me to go paragliding, and even though it sounds crazy I said yes because how many times are you going to be asked to go paragliding over the ocean? So the next morning my amazing photographer took me paragliding before my flight home. Memories made."