Boy, are we excited to be seeing our little baby (Originals Sweats - check 'em out here!) fly off into the world and onto the bods of some of Australia's most inspiring creative up-and-comers. Take Yasmin Suteja for instance, not only is she a hugely talented photographer, she's also a savvy business boss babe. Owner of Culture Machine, a creative services and talent agency, she also started what was to eventually become the business from a Tumblr account while on a trip to Vegas. Told you, inspiring! We chatted to Yasmin about what originality means to her...
What do you love most about what you do?
Travel! I grew up in Bali and had friends from all over the world - so I had always imagined travelling the world and visiting all of those places! My work has now taken me to the US, Hawaii, Japan, Thailand and lots more. I’m excited to do Europe next.
What does a typical day look like for you?
This is always a difficult question to answer, as I really don’t have a typical day. The only constant is that I’m generally either answering emails, on a conference call or on set shooting. Oh, and coffee - coffee is a constant.
What’s been your proudest achievement to date so far, and why?
I think my proudest achievement is a cumulative effort. I started Culture Machine five years ago now, straight out of university. It began as a creative collective in Bali, transformed into a talent agency in Sydney and is now transitioning into a global creative agency and media platform. I’m really proud of my team. We’re young but professional and passionate, always staying ten steps ahead!
Who has been your biggest inspiration and why?
My biggest inspiration is probably my mum. My mum runs one of Bali’s most successful cafes (@cratecafe) and skate bowl/bar @prettypoison___. Mum is the most ballsy gutsy incredibly hard working business woman I know! I’ve watched her push through difficult times and come out of it stronger, achieving what seemed like almost impossible goals and ambitions.
What does originality mean to you?
Originality means switching off. Stepping back from everything around you. It means tapping in on who you are as an individual and finding ways to express that undistracted by the noise around you.
Do you have a go-to style or look?
My style is constantly changing and evolving (especially through travel). I just returned from a trip to Tokyo and was SO inspired by the street style over there. The way the Japanese layer and combine colour and shape is honestly the best thing I’ve ever seen. But when I can’t be bothered getting dressed my default is my favourite pair of blue jeans, a white tee, paired with sneakers and layers of gold jewellery.
What are your favourite(s) from the Bonds Originals range?
The red! It’s sort of more of an orange-red which works well with my skin tone.
What five things can you not live without?
Music, laughter, good food, good coffee and good company!
What advice do you have for someone trying to break into your industry?
Don’t expect things to happen overnight. They won’t. You need time. Time to yourself. Time to discover and explore who you are as an individual who you are as an artist and what you want to create. I think this it the most important thing I learned. The photographers I admire the most are the ones who have a definitive style and aesthetic. It takes years to discover and curate this. But it makes you a much better artist with greater longevity in the industry.
What’s on the agenda for 2018?
We’re now in March 2018, and so far I’ve set up a concept store in Bali, am building up a production team in Sydney and have shot three campaigns in Tokyo. I’m back in Bali now helping my brother with the marketing of his first music festival GYPSYLANDS in Bali. Then we hope to travel to Europe and move to New York in September.
Check out more of Yasmin's work via her Instagram @yasminsuteja