Dress Ups

Laura Beverley is a kiwi actor, photographer and filmmaker. She grew up in Hong Kong and New Zealand and has spent the last 4 years studying in Australia. In 2014 she completed a Fine Arts degree majoring in Photomedia at UNSW Art & Design, and in 2015, she graduated from the Howard Fine Acting Studio AU full time program. Laura is currently based in New Zealand working as an actor and freelance photographer.

How did your shoot with Abbey go?

Super! I came up with the concept of ‘Dress Ups …. as children we dressed up to be adults, now we dress up to be children again.‘ That is what one could say my job as an actor is. Abbey’s enthusiasm for this concept was infectious so it became more of a collaboration. I love to document real life so I got Abbey to literally play dress ups and I’d occasionally step in to direct. I wanted to capture her childlike energy but also the side of her that knows she won’t ever be this free again, she is living in her imagination in order to actually enjoy.

Can we photograph the female body differently in a more powerful way?

Definitely. Too often it becomes about just looking pretty or just looking sexy, but what is going on in the brain of that pretty or sexy person you see in a picture or in a film? To the same degree they are showing, they will be hiding. I find what is on the inside more interesting so my aim is to find (or create in that person, from my own experiences) what is going on inside and capture it for what it really is on the outside. Yes, sex sells when it comes to the female body, but I choose not to do things because more people will like it, I choose to do things because it means something to me. That goes for photography and anything else I do.

What inspires you?

Honesty and openness. Stories in any form. Yellow. People that find love in whatever they are doing or whoever they are with. Being asked to do a shoot for this mag inspired me, having a guideline with full creative direction to put it into action!

How would you define beauty?

Truth. It’s something I am still working on in myself. I feel more beautiful when I know I am walking my talk.

Film or digital?

Both. Film because it’s pure, real and there is more of a craft involved. I have assisted for photographers on digital fashion shoots and the stick thin model is being edited to appear thinner straight away, in front of her. What we see in a lot of commercial magazines is fake and if I knew that growing up it would have saved me a lot of physiological issues! But I love digital because I love snapping constantly, capturing the in between moments as well as the composed! (I am more precious about getting the ‘right‘ shot when using film.)

What makes you happy?

Swimming in the ocean. Creating. Being on stage. Being around people I love and that I feel the love back from.

What’s next for you?

Heading to LA in June for acting. And photography; I have a growing demand for actor’s headshots and taking stills on film sets and theatre productions. Filming; I am currently making a short film to promote an upcoming wellness business in NZ. And also writing skits to film and put on a youtube channel.