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Collina Strada – Resort 2020 9
Collina Strada – Resort 2020Photography Charlie Engman

Photographer Charlie Engman’s shots appear in new Collina Strada collection

The Resort 2020 lookbook – also shot by the Dazed contributor – is a collaboration with longtime friend and designer Hillary Taymour

Ten years ago, Collina Strada designer Hillary Taymour was looking for an intern and posted an ad on Craigslist. She found one in photographer Charlie Engman and since then, the two have become firm friends as well as longtime collaborators. The latest project between them is for the New York label’s Resort 2020 collection.

Entitled, ‘Radical Transparency’, the collection features Engman’s prints appearing in both collage styles on garments, as well as on graphic print t-shirts. Explaining the reasoning behind the collection’s name, Taymour explains: “It’s about honest communication with yourself and the world. Being transparent about the state of humanity right now is necessary and can be just as attractive as it is uncomfortable.” 

For the new collection, Taymour decided to approach the design process by considering the garments as individual pieces. “We designed a few custom prints from photographs we conceptualised, shot, and then created into our grand masterpiece, named Sistine Tomato,” she says. “Charlie pushes the side of my brain that I like to spend the most time with. To be around someone that knows you so well and you share equal respect with creatively is the ultimate work goal.” 

Spotlighting models the duo admire, the images feature like 15-year-old Synphanie Mojica, who Engman first photographed at the age of 13, as well as an appearance from the photographer’s mother. “A major underpinning of the collaboration was an awareness of community and family,” explains Engman. 

Similar to any creative relationship, the duo both learned a lot from each other. Of Taymour, Engman says: “Hillary has a certain kind of pragmatism that I admire, and I learned a lot about how to delegate and how to anchor my fantasies to a feasible reality.” Taymour says the photographer taught her how to not be afraid to be her “most extra self and know when it’s nap time”.

“It’s honestly been such a fun process, I feel so grateful to have him in my life,” Taymour says, reflecting on the project and their friendship. “Currently, we are sitting next to each other in Paris wishing we had a huge studio where we could both do our work and constantly collaborate, so I guess it went well.”