WONDER WOMAN: BREEANA DUNBAR // PHOTOGRAPHER
Breeana Dunbar is a Wonder Woman.
With a passion for showcasing cool projects by creative women, Bree is a talented photographer and also mum to her beautiful two-year old son Ari.
Bree entered the Radical Yes! world one fortuitous afternoon last year when she stumbled upon our pop up event on Lygon St, in her neighbourhood of Brunswick East. She introduced herself to brand director and founder Kerryn, mentioned her budding photography business and offered up her support. A few months later, with plans of launching Yes! Journal in the pipeline, Kerryn contacted Bree to help bring the project to life and did she ever!
Bringing warmth and a sense of fun to every shoot, Bree makes her subjects feel completely at ease, allowing them to shine.
Now our go-to photographer, it seems only natural to showcase the woman behind the lens who captures so many of the beautiful images seen here on Yes! Journal and throughout the Radial Yes! universe
- Intro Copy by Ally Macrae
Tell us a little about your work, what do you do? Why do you do it?
I’m a portrait and lifestyle photographer, and I particularly love working with creative, women-led small businesses and interesting not-for-profit organisations with a focus on issues affecting women and girls.
I’m also one half of a design and photography team called Lady Scout Studios, with my talented friend Ally Oliver-Perham. Again, we focus on cool projects by women and for women. We have some exciting things coming up so stayed tuned!
I spent years secretly dreaming about turning my passion for photography into a career, and I took the plunge after my ‘surprise baby’ was born and I couldn’t return to my previous job. I can’t begin to describe how much I love what I do. I’ve meet so many cool, creative women and have been part of some amazing projects.
Tell us about your creative process. Do you have any work rituals or habits you follow?
My creative process revolves around staying organised and staying inspired. Staying organised is huge for me, and my small business management platform, 17 Hats, really helps here. And staying inspired is easy at the moment because I’m only a year and bit in to my business and everything is still so exciting!
Describe your work environment. Do you work from a studio, office, café or at home? How does the space influence you?
This is probably one of the best parts of my job, variety! I generally shoot on location, so I could be shooting in a client’s home or work place, in a cafe, at an event space, and so on. Just last week I got to spend three days shooting in a million-dollar, impeccably-styled apartment in South Yarra, I’ve never seen anything like it! I’m naturally curious about people and places, so I love that I get to snoop about in other people’s spaces.
I also have a little home office in a corner of my bedroom. I know it’s not good feng shui to work in your bedroom, but our tiny apartment doesn’t allow for my desk to be anywhere else, and I actually love my little workspace. I’m very much influenced by the space around me. When I’m working from home, I need to be in an organised, clutter-free environment in order to function. My partner and I recently downsized from a large apartment to a much smaller one, and this has really helped with the clutter because we had to part with at least 50% of our possessions. The move was a conscious decision to simplify our life, and living in our tiny but functional apartment has had such a positive effect on the work I do from home, and our life in general. Also, because we’re living smaller, we can afford to live in one of our favourite neighbourhood in Melbourne; Brunswick East, which is a really creative and supportive community and is a constant source of inspiration to me and my work.
What is one thing in your life you are proud of? This can be anything, professional or personal.
I am most proud of my two babies; Ari (my two year old), and my business.
Ari amazes me and makes me laugh everyday. It sounds silly, but when I was pregnant I was really worried that parenting would be a lot of work and not much fun. And it is a lot of work, but it’s more fun than I could have ever imagined!
In terms of my business, it’s a work in progress and I’m still finding my feet, but I’m so proud of what I’ve achieved so far. I’ve never been so satisfied in a job. There’s so much to the business of photography that I never considered when photography was a hobby. Not only do I have to continue to work on the technical and creative aspects of photography, I also have to learn about marketing, client interactions, social media, website building, accounting, networking, the list goes on. I find it all pretty interesting and rewarding, and I’m so excited to see where my business will take me.
What does being ‘radical’ mean to you?
“In a society that profits from your self-doubt, liking yourself is a rebellious act.”
I think liking and accepting yourself is the most radical thing a woman can do. It’s taken me 35 years to really start to like myself, and three things have helped; simply getting older and getting to know myself better, becoming a mother, and doing a job that I find fulfilling. While I haven’t totally eliminated self-doubt from my life, most of the time I feel good about myself, and that is a very freeing feeling.