To fully discover the true identity of Kogel Bay, one must consider its surrounding nature, flora and isolated location. We chose to do our photoshoot on one of the wildest beaches in the Western Cape for its pristine beauty and natural Fynbos surroundings. It is hard to put into words how unique and beautiful this part of South Africa is.

We were very fortunate to work with a talented Berlin and Cape Town-based editorial photographer Petra van Raaij to capture all that raw beauty of the Western Cape with a sensual and dreamy touch. Our model, South African born, Jessica Lee Buchanan brought earthy and natural feel into our shoot. We did not retouch any of the images for one simple reason Jesse - is magnificent and so are our customers. They are real women and men who live in the real world, celebrating their real beauty beyond photoshop or ever being retouched.

We spent the entire day on these wild beaches shooting these images as well as chasing wild baboons away from our location and discovering there are no toilets on these beaches. Welcome to real nature.

At the end of the day around the sunset, nature had one more powerful surprise for us. It was a full moon and the tide had risen all around us. Our exit had been blocked off by large surf and enormous waves that were crashing dangerously against the famous boulders. There we were, cut off from the main beach with our two daughters, crew, expensive camera equipment and a setting sun. We considered sleeping on the beach and not venturing across the rocks, but with the water rising, we were told by other people on the beach they had seen the tide come up so high that we would have no dry ground within hours. So we had to make our way through the water and carry everything and everyone, as safely as we could.

Luckily we weren’t the only ones left of the beach that evening. Some wonderful locals who came down to watch the sunset, helped carry some gear across the raging water and came to our rescue after many of us got trapped on the rocks by the swell of the water as the waves came in. Finally we managed to escape after plummeting into the freezing cold waters with our kids, equipment and crew.

When we were through, we all realized how lucky we were to have had no major injuries and no damage to the equipment that went underwater more than once.

We hope you enoy looking at all the incredible photos that Petra so perfectly captured. We are incredibly excited to have Jesse Lee as the new face of African Botanics and thank her for all her wonderful work with us.

From Craig, Julia and our two beautiful daughters, Nurit and Kayla, we thank everyone for helping us capture the true esscense of African Botanics and all the magnificent beauty that the Western Cape has.


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