Monthly Archives: February 2015

A soul that is deep.



Kodi Smit-McPhee.

Tonight is the Australian debut of Chanel 9’s highly anticipated TV series Gallipoli in which Kodi plays the lead role of Thomas “Tolly” Johnson.

At the age of 18 Kodi has accomplished a lot as an actor. Perhaps it’s his quiet sensitivity or his ability to observe which enables him to give life to characters like “Tolly” and “Boy” (Cormac McCarthy’s adapted novel The Road).

I had the pleasure of photographing Kodi, his sister Noa and Dad Andy, (who also stars in Gallipoli as Colonel John ‘Bull’ Antill) in Los Angeles.

The Mcphee’s stick together.

A family to watch.

Kodi Smit-Mcphee, Los Angeles. Photograph by Alex Vaughan (

Image © Alex Vaughan



On fire.

That would be a fair way to describe Sarah Snook.

On Friday, Snook took out one of the highest accolades achievable in Australian Film and Television – ‘Best Lead Actress in a Film’ at Australia’s equivalent of the Oscars & BAFTAs – the AACTA awards.

Her marvellously talented Predestination co-star Ethan Hawke had this to say about her:

“Sarah’s performance is one of the most incredible I’ve ever been a part of. It’s one thing to do a moving portrait of a transgender person, but to do it in a genre film is really an accomplishment. I really want people to see the film to experience what an incredible performance this is. It’s unlike anything I’ve seen before.” (You can read more here:

So why did I invite Snook to be a part of my project?

For me, she has an element of mystery about her that I find hard to define in words. It underlies every one of her character portrayals. Perhaps it’s a combination of intrigue and a sense of playful mischievousness that permeates her performances.

This is true for her in person also.

Her ability to mesmerize.

To draw you in.

It’s unreal.

‘In Their Element’ – This project is an exploration of the more intimate aspects of life as an artist away from the lights of the main stage.

A study of transition in the lives of these artists over an extended period of time.

30 years in fact.

I’ve spent the last 3 and a half years documenting actors, photographers, painters, musicians and directors in Australia, New Zealand, the US, the UK and Paris.

26 more years of observation, exploration and wonder lie ahead (I will be 58 years of age on completion of this series).

My philosophy is that images are of a place and time. Never to be repeated.

I feel the inherent value of this project will be in the documentation of how each artist morphs and changes over time, and the evolution of the landscape that I find them within.

Where will Sarah be in 10 years? 20 years?

I don’t know, but I hope that I will be there to document her journey.

Sarah Snook, Los Angeles California. March 2014. By Alex Vaughan, Photographer Sarah Snook in Los Angeles, California last year (March 2014). This is the very first release of this image.