Two Minutes With Natalie Cottee

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posted by Kate McCart

We caught up with Sydney Photographer, Art Director and Designer, Natalie Cottee to talk all things creative. Mesmerised by the realms of fashion and photography,  her Dad gave her an old 35mm camera when she was 11 and she has continued to capture moments through the same tiny box since. A recent finalist in the 2014 Pedestrian TV Photography Awards, take two to learn more about this talented young lady.

Describe yourself in three words…
Excitable, passionate & vegan.

What triggered your interest in photography?
I was always interested but it was my job as an art director which really pushed me to take it further.

Photographer, Art Director and Designer, I’m guessing this is your full-time gig?
Yes, pretty much. Although I mostly try to focus on the Photography side of it all as that’s where my real love is.

What do you love about photography?
I love that I get to create and capture moments that might otherwise be forgotten.

What equipment do you use?
Canon 5D Mark III and a mix of Canon lenses. I also sometimes like to use film or polaroid for something a little extra on certain shoots.

Tell us the backstory to your favourite picture you entered into this year’s Pedestrian Photo Awards?
This photo was taken on 35mm film as an outtake image from a larger story I shot with the insanely gorgeous Jena Goldsack. I love it because of her really – I mean, she is so magical and I think this image captures a bit of that for the viewer.

What is your favourite photo you’ve taken?
That is a really tough question and almost impossible to answer without me changing my mind in a day or so but today, my favourite is one of a girl I met named Kate. I asked if I could shoot her and a week later, at her place we captured this moment which I think is pretty beautiful.

What is your favourite subject you’ve photographed?
My favourite ‘thing’ to ever photograph is Cuba… Not just the place in general but the people in it and everything about it. This image is one I took last year of a little Cuban local boy I spent the day with. It was taken in his family home in Havana with his mum cropped out on one side peeling potatoes and his dad on the other side eating dinner. It was just a really cool moment to be able to share with them.

What has been your favourite photography job?
I don’t think I could choose just one. I always have so much fun when I’m shooting no matter what the job is so really, I would have to say all of them. Sorry for the unexciting answer.

What is your next job?
I’m shooting a job for Stories Collective in the next couple of weeks which should be a fun one. Stay tuned...

What is your greatest achievement?
Probably the fact that I get to do this for a living now. As Charles Eames said – “It makes me feel guilty that anybody should have such a good time doing what they are supposed to do.”

Describe your morning routine…
Wake up 5:30am to my cat Chewie head butting me to get fed and after lying in bed for a while listening to the sound of the waves outside, I finally give in to his coaxing and get up. My husband and I then head off together for our morning coffee/breakfast ritual at one of our fav local northern beaches cafes. After this, I usually like to go for a walk with a friend or go to yoga and then aim to be home by 9am, just in time to start my working day.

What is your dream Sunday?
Hanging out the back of our place on the beach with our friends in Summer with a glass of red wine and Moroccan rugs and home made Mexican food.

Three things you can’t live without?
My Bobble water bottle, Avocado & Tabasco.

Tea or coffee?

Cats or dogs?
If I had to choose, then it would have to be dogs.

Next on your travel itinerary?
Central America for my honeymoon!