Postcards from the past

It’s a universal truth- everyone loves to get mail. Real mail. Not bills, or advertising, but good old fashioned mail; where a friend writes you a letter or a postcard. Sadly, these days “snail mail” as we’ve come to call it, is rare. I was revisiting an old photo album this morning and amongst the photos of my travels in Italy was this postcard.


I looked at what was written in the notes beside it

“It didn’t look like this- there were no flowers and the sky was grey. There were also people all over the steps”.  

(Clearly I was a frustrated photographer even back then)

So I turned it over, thinking that it was a postcard that I had bought to show me the potential of what the Spanish Steps looked like. At the time I was backpacking with my friend Stephanie. There is no photo in the album of the Spanish Steps, however Steph did take a photo of me at the Fountain of Truth.

Fountain of Truth

The Fountain of Truth, Rome, 1996: aged 20.


I was wrong. I didn’t buy the postcard at all, and it had nothing to do with my holiday.

(Click on the images to enlarge).

I’m delighted to have found that the postcard is from one of my favourite people on the planet. I think she could send me a letter at 92 and I’d know instantly that it is her writing.

Koel is one of two people that I have always loved getting letters and postcards from. Why, because they make me laugh and I can hear their voices reading the postcard out loud to me. I can visualise their faces and their smiles, and I happen to think they are good writers. The other person is Rani, and I always secretly hoped she’d grow up to be a writer. Maybe she will…

So thanks Koel! Your postcard took me back in time to not only my travels in Europe, but the memories of our friendship.

I look forward to sharing other postcards from my past with you next Thursday.

Until then, tell me have you kept any postcards from your past? You could upload a picture of them in the comments below.

Portraiture with a twist of fashion



Recently I had the privilege of attending a portraiture workshop with my favourite photographer Carla Coulson. Carla is an Aussie who traded in the corporate life in Sydney, moved to Italy, learnt to take photos, and now lives with her husband in Paris. She is famous for not only her travel photography but also her portraiture, which has a twist of fashion.

RubyCotton2reduced size

The four day “Picture This” workshop was every photographer’s dream. Stunning locations, access to the best make-up and hair artists, and stylists and down to earth, but incredibly good looking “everyday” people who posed for us and pretended to be models. Everything was thought of, and organised for us. The food served each day was delicious and nutritious, and we had access to a small team of Carla’s trusted photography assistants to show us the ropes.


Having spent a week prior taking landscapes, my brain took a little to adjust to the different mindset.  Carla’s approach is to utilise natural light in all situations. There were no flashes, no tripods and no studio set ups. I can’t begin to explain how much I learnt about my camera and myself during this workshop.


For further information about Carla Coulson visit her website.



All photos taken by Katische Haberfield. Click on any image to enlarge.