Cape Town-based photographer, filmmaker, and educator Meghan Daniels produces work that explores neglected and nostalgic spaces in South Africa through both personal narratives and a documentary framework.
They graduated from the University of Cape Town with a degree in Visual and Art History and Social Anthropology. They now travel South Africa’s dirt roads with a camera in hand – not only documenting stories but also running small-scale photography workshops in towns that do not have access to the medium.
Daniels recently collaborated with fashion designer Celeste Arendse of SELFI and young rapper Dee Koala to bring the Adidas Home of Classics ‘Made with care, worn without’ campaign to life.
Daniels, who captured the process, chats about the collaboration:
Tell us about your experience in capturing the process of Celeste.
The collaboration between Celeste, Dee and I went far beyond just a ‘work’ relationship. We became friends throughout the process – often getting coffee together during breaks, opening up about deeper ‘life stuff’, and also just laughing until we cried.
Our sensitivity and care for one another aided the entire documentation process, making it feel both organic and ‘at home’ – Celeste and Dee engaging and sharing ideas from the start, Celeste understanding what outfit would suit Dee’s personality, me incorporating a visual style into the documentation process that could hold and reflect all of this, etc.
How did you go about bringing across the notion of Made with care, worn without within your stills and video content?
I interpreted this in two ways.
Firstly, I feel like the slogan “made with care, worn without” fit both Celeste and Dee perfectly. When you enter the SELFI store, you are presented with apparel and accessories that rest on an aesthetic of soft, muted, clean, raw and pastel tones.
When you first meet Dee, you may assume that she contradicts what SELFI presents – she struts confidently into a room adorned in streetwear, she is bold, outspoken, social, ‘bubbly’, and has a laugh saturated with bright colour, as if she unashamedly carries herself without too
much care of what others may think.
I wanted to capture these different personalities in our collaboration – using a more documentary-esque approach to the project. I wanted to ensure I showed the behind the scenes moments that you may not usually see in the production of garments and the collaboration – placing emphasis on human interactions and connection. I brought my old,
little handy point-and-shoot camera to set to document these moments, as they’re small and un-intrusive. We all shared the handycam, documenting one another as opposed to just me holding the camera. I coupled this with a camera that shoots in a ‘cleaner’, digital aesthetic.
Secondly, I interpreted ‘made with care, worn without’ in terms of our collaboration together – creating a body of work together through care (for one another, as well as for our different artistic crafts), whilst simultaneously not being afraid to be ourselves during this process because of our friendship that was formed (being able to be express ourselves
without fear of judgment around one another).
As an emerging creative, what role does collaboration play within your personal and professional growth?
Collaboration is everything. Every human involved in creating a body of work each brings their various backgrounds, skill sets, personalities, thoughts, and so much more to set. Without this, we could never create, learn, share and expand.
Collaboration is incredibly important to ensure that you are challenged and changing a plethora of spheres in the visual-making industry.
How do you stay true to yourself?
I’m still figuring this out and I think I will be for a very long time.