A Woman's Confidence

Denny Beauty Portrait by Fen

”Confident women are changing the world.”

Without confidence, we can have all kinds of ideas about how we want the world to be, but we will never be able to execute them. Thought to action. That is what confidence does. So if we don’t work on our own sense of self-confidence, it’s going to be difficult for us to make progress on much of anything.

Women can be the answer to so many of the world’s problems.

But not without confidence.

Confident women are ending violence against women. They’re standing up for themselves and saying, “I won’t let you treat me like this. I’m putting an end to this for good.” Confident women are rescuing other women from slavery and prostitution. They’re taking refugees into their homes and giving them money and helping them heal.

Confident women are getting on stages and standing up in their homes and saying to their husbands and their children, “things use to be this way, but that is going to change.”

Confident women are restoring peace in the world.

Confident women are starting businesses and raising brave girls and sensitive boys. They’re speaking up at tables full of men and women alike and standing up against cultural messages that say only a certain kind of person matters.

They’re removing themselves from communities and relationships where they are not valued because they know they will never find their voice where they’re asked to stay silent. They’re deeply compassionate but also strongly convicted and unwilling to act in a way that goes against that conviction.

But most of all, confident women are taking a stand against their own jealousy and pessimism and perfectionism and competitive spirit and are saying to the women around them, “I think you are so brave and beautiful for doing that thing you just did.” They’re taking notes and getting creative and telling themselves, “nothing is impossible… we can do this.”

You are a confident woman. That’s the truth.

You just might not know it yet.” (Profound thoughts penned by Allison Fallon).

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07 Dec 2016

Don’t Worry

Portraits of Elxi & Caroline by Winson for Dewi Magazine

Do you worry a lot? Most of us do. We experience anxiety in many forms throughout the course of our daily lives. We worry about the future, or about not getting to your next meeting on time because of traffic, or about what people think of you, or even with questions that randomly pop up in your head, such as "Is it possible to find the man I love?” or “Am I ever going to get married?” Even when we’ve found the person we want to spend the rest of our lives with, we worry about wedding planning and we think, “Can we get past this?” Not to mention all the “What ifs” we need to get sorted out.

Worrying doesn’t empty tomorrow of its sorrow; instead it robs today of its strength. Entertaining the what-ifs in your life is the first step to being overtaken with worry. 

Let me tell you what worrying means. To worry means taking responsibility for things you were never intended to handle. To worry means you’re lacking of trust in the Creator of the universe. To worry means you’re saying that you’re on top of the situation even when it’s too big for you. The list of things to worry about - if you choose to worry - is endless. We obsess, we stress, we have anxiety over things that are just wasted thoughts that imprisons us. Worry puts us in cages of anxiety. 

Who can add a single worry to our lives by worrying? None of us, I’m sure. Worrying steals our ability to enjoy the moments that God has given us now. No matter what is going on around us, we need to make a decision that we are going to trust God because He is in control, even when everything seems out of control. By refusing to worry does not mean that you do not take responsibility for the things you are supposed to handle; it just means that you know when you stop and God begins.

While everyone else is full of cares and worry, this is a great opportunity to be an example. Somebody could easily ask you, “Why aren’t you worrying. Why aren’t you frantic like everyone else. You must know something that I don’t know.” So, I challenge you to come out and to be different, to have a different response, to have a different talk. 

Slow down all thoughts and take a deep breath. Tomorrow is a brand new day. Let today go, so you can begin tomorrow peacefully. Each new day is too dear, with its hopes and invitations, to waste a moment on yesterdays. 


Cheers,

 

Winson

Portraits of Elxi & Caroline by Winson for Dewi Magazine

Wardrobe by Fashionvalet

 

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15 Nov 2016

A Little Kindness Goes a Long Way

Axioo Bali Outing 2016

Every outing, we tell our team, that we may have fun shopping or cafe hopping during personal holiday trips, but when on company expenses, we must step out of our comfort zones and go somewhere that will expand our minds. Tibet. Morocco. Cuba. Those are the dream trips. But while we are on our way to figuring out the dream budgeting solution, we knocked on our neighbour’s door: West Flores.


An astonishing 1,733 km2 archipelago, home to more than 4,000 of the legendary Komodo dragons. Scattered above the water are rusty-red hilly savannah, and the underwater is made up of healthy coral reefs and seagrass beds. A thousand years ago, Portuguese explorers and Chinese traders forged their path through raging torrents only to be enchanted by this alluring territory. Three years ago, Gwyneth Paltrow spent a week on a wooden boat here and claimed everything magical.


Apparently, not too many in our team were excited when we announced that we’d explore the Flores' island chain. Partly because they believed all beautiful beaches are similar, but mostly because they were intimidated by the idea of inappropriate boat toilet. You see, living in a paradise island doesn’t mean we would all become hippies and surfers. Many of us don’t let go of our metropolitan traits and are very proud of it. 


So we flew East loaded with 110 SPF sunscreen, multiple hats, and a portable fan. We have good laughs everyday at our office but the holiday vibe enhanced the fun. As soon as we arrived at our hotel, we jumped into the water, grabbed canoes and paddled around an island nearby. 


Now put your hand on your heart and answer this question honestly. Would you be eager to hike through a brutal 40 degree heat to see ocean waters from a different angle?


Not much of a tricky question, is it? Even John Goddard would choose a descent position of the sun to start a hike. Well, the thing is, we were a bunch of amateur explorers that miscalculated the timing. When our boat docked at the foothill, the midday sun had been waiting right on top of our head, fiercely. All we begged for was cold beers and shades, which ironically, are two of all the many things that were never available at that deserted island. 


But no one begged for not going up. No one even asked. None of us whined. Everyone was supporting each other and didn’t stop being funny all along the sweaty and dangerous hike. Except for the 4-year-old kid we brought along. Oh well.


Cenny doubted herself if she could even make it halfway, but she made it to the top. Vina, who spends her whole life hiding from the monstrous sun made it to the top. All of the urban ladies and well-groomed gentlemen made it to the top. The grumpy toddler made it to the top. Together, we redefined each other’s limitations.


Then we jumped into the cold water again. Rolled with the waves like we never did before. Swam through school of little fishes and chased away by the big ones. One by one, the hesitant ladies, the injured, and the sceptical, get their hair wet and salty. The chaps who had never hiked and snorkelled before screamed on top of their lung, “This is the best day of my life!” Everyone was so absorbed in the togetherness and couldn’t care less about the sunburn and ruined make-ups.


I’ve mentioned earlier about the ultimate city girl who refused to make friends with the sun, right? Well, she wrote this in her diary,


“There are some moments in life you hope you could freeze and this week is one of those. From sunrise to sunsets, from hills to hills, from island to island, we hiked, explored, snorkelled to our heart's delight, without a care in the world.”


And this,


“Shared our hearts out on the deck of the boat under the starry skyline with our favourite songs playing in the background, laughed heartily at silly jokes and at each other, being vulnerable, experienced new things and got to know one another better all over again.”


So yes, we went to Flores to escape routines, but we were not only awarded with motivating stories and fun photos, but also enriched with deeper understanding of ourselves, of each other’s, as a family, as a team. As a solid team. 


And there were little promises we wrote in our heart. Little dreams we sent to the stars. Little hopes we whispered to the calm sea. 


And like those Portuguese explorers and Chinese traders, each of us left a piece of our heart in Flores, with the cheerful fishes, the stinging jellyfishes, the majestic mantas, the shy dolphins, the determined bats, and the venomous Komodos.



Cheers, 

Axioo Bali

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05 Nov 2016

Facing the Future

Mellisa Portraits by Fen

“This is the day!” I used to tell myself every time I click on the shutters of my camera in the beginning of a photo shoot. “This will be the day I create a masterpiece,” I used to say.

I might just be trying to flood the day with positivity or to psyche myself into confidence, but sometimes (most of the time actually), the result of the photo shoot wasn’t like how I pictured it in my mind before it all began. Sometimes it disappointed me, sometimes it surprised me, but it always begged the question: is this a masterpiece?

Recently, I found a way to break that by looking at “creating” from another point of view, and that is from the Muse I had in my studio that day. She’s always been my inspiration. And I have discovered that when I focussed on the subject than on the ambition to make masterpieces, the ideas just kept on coming. 

I’d like to think that I’m not the only one who pressures myself and fixates my focus on the object of my creation - the greater and the more magnificent the better. But the thing is, innovation isn’t always about new shapes and high tech material. Sometimes the greatest and most exciting development stem from a change of attitude or shift in priority. 

We are responding to a world of photography that seems live in demand no lessening of ingenuity. and the fact that we will shape our world over the next decade, sometimes shakes my heart. 

So, while it is easy to focus on the people that make big splashes, or the people that Trademark a countless different inventions, or create movies, or even find the cures to cancers. But I think more importantly are the people who are doing small things, but doing them everyday, small things that add up little by little, action by action creating ripples.

There are people who create positive ripples. Each morning, they get up, smile and they’re grateful for a new day. They extend gratitude and generosity. Like my AXIOO family: the photographers and videographers, traveling all over the world to create memories for the happy couples, and joyfully journals wedding days as if they are shooting for their friends' wedding; the editors who beautify each photos, designers who create a one of a kind book and packaging, the stylists, all the front liners and all the defenders, who love listening to love stories and who makes sure couples get the best experiences on their journey with AXIOO. 

I believe that the ripples everyone at AXIOO is making in everything that we do will make a giant whale hippo splash later. Isn’t life all about discovering and celebrating new ideas, after all?

This album of the portraits of Icha is very special for me. She came to me and Meli, our stylist, with the ideas of shooting inspired by Crimson Peak. It was a challenge for me to shoot something dark, creating with  Dark Moody Low-Key Portraits. But I am glad that we did it. I think Icha is one of the unique client who knows what she wants , and hats off to her for daring to do what she likes without following the “trend”. 

Cheers to the birthday girl, who dare to be different. Happy birthday, Icha! 

 

Love,

Fen

 

 

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24 Oct 2016

Complete

Jasslyn Portraits by Winson

“Fall for someone who completes you. When you find that special someone, you will know, because you will feel complete.” 

How do you feel after reading that sentence? It sounds so romantic, doesn’t it? Well, actually, it isn’t. 

When you looking for your “other half” who you think is going to magically complete you, what you are doing is denying your own potential of being an already whole woman or human being. Your wholeness can’t be measured by other people, but yourself. Being whole doesn’t come when you’re dating a rich man who makes a luxurious living; it doesn’t come when you are married and have a family either; and being complete doesn’t come when your spouse surprise you and whisper “I love you”. You are whole because you know how valuable you are. That’s the only way of being complete. You are in change of making yourself complete. Not anyone else. Not your boyfriend or husband, no matter how great they may be. It is through one’s complete sense of self and working on yourself, will you ever feel complete.

Being whole isn’t an outside job; it is an inside job.

When you are looking for someone who will complete you, you will be disappointed. A relationship should be like two full glasses. If one glass is only half full, the other cup will have to keep on filling it. Soon, that other cup will run empty. A truly happy relationship consists of two people who would truly be perfectly fine on their own, but choose to be together anyway because they can’t imagine not having that person to share their lives with. 

Here’s what you need to remind yourself of, whether you’re single or in a committed relationship. Only you can complete yourself. If you aren’t happy, if you don’t feel like you’re worthy or complete when you’re single, you will feel the same way even when you’re in a relationship, even those serious enough to be married. You are a whole person who is complete on your own. You don’t need anyone else to complete you. You only need someone to accept you completely. The best recipe for being whole is to be grateful of your life and fill your heart, mind and body with a positive things.  

 

Love,

 

Winson

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13 Oct 2016

Axioo Film Packaging

Here it is, and of course, there is nothing dramatic.

While our film photographers extract the essence of your charming wedding, our designers extract the essence of film photography, and then combine both in prints. So what do you think it’s gonna be like?

It's subtle. It’s textural. It’s refined. And since it is concepted by Fen Soong, the same sweet soul that masterminds the design sensibility of Axioo, it is also exquisitely exceptional.

We waved goodbye to contemporary albums with synthetic leather cover. In fact, this is not an album at all. This is a fine art gallery.

We seek to create frisson by shaving off things that define an album: piece of metals, glue, and threads from between the pages. 
We set the papers free, so you’re not allowed to flip through the pages very quickly anymore. But instead, you slow down, and be absorbed in the magical memory full of fairy-tale lights that only films could tame.

The pages from pre-wedding session are bundled in a gorgeous envelope that is done tastefully in genuine leather, and trimmed in the same fashion as Valentino's autumn coat. If the pages are from a wedding, then they are lovingly placed in a gold-lined glass keepsake, the kind of keepsake that if you show it to Cinderella she'll bring it to a ball.

Still in the pursuit of shedding mediocrity, the framed photos are printed on materials that meet the highest archival standard, 310 gsm William Turner, by Hahnemühle. A piece of paper so fine and so pure it is 100% cotton, which means it could outlive a Galapagos tortoise without any discoloration and in the same time leave a haptic impression, while showing off all film's intricate colour gamut very deeply and perfectly.

There is also an option of scrolls, which would give you a glimpse of Nefertiti’s favourite afternoon activity. Only in this case, you will be enjoying beautiful images that move slowly on a sturdy 2 meters seamless paper, instead of papyrus.

All of this, is to achieve one thing: an enchanting experience of process. The very essence of film photography. The best house we could think of for film's signature style: painterly, clean and romantic.

Yes, you could argue that film doesn’t have the flare or the drama of the digital world, and we’d probably agree with you. But look at it this way, it was flare and drama that brought Beyonce’s album covers, but it was film photography that managed to capture the bewitching beauty of Audrey Hepburn, dead straight.

 

Love, 
Axioo

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03 Oct 2016

Introducing: Newest Vacation Essentials

Sweet Escape at Kompas Travel Fair

“The best part of a vacation are the memories.”Time seems to slow down when you’re on vacation. You savor every experience, every activity, every connection. On your vacations, you are closer to your family. You laugh. You bond. You share intimate moments. And in this fast-paced world we live in, these moments are rare.

Sweet Escape turns your vacations into beautiful, emotionally candid photos. It’s like having a personal photographer to capture the most intimate, raw, and unedited memories. Sweet Escape will change the way you remember your vacations by giving you a beautiful memory lane to walk down on. 

Sweet Escape is a holiday photography service founded by David Soong, the same person who revolutionized the wedding photography industry in Indonesia through his company, AXIOO Photography. Sweet Escape captures moments for vacation goers, connecting them with 150 photographers from across the globe. 

Sweet Escape took part at Kompas Travel Fair last weekend. It was a great chance to introduce to the enthusiastic vacation-goers to the newest vacation essential. We were so happy to see so many people flocked our pretty booth and we get to talk about what Sweet Escape really is: the best souvenirs to take home at the end of the vacation.

 

Cheers,

 

Sweet Escape Team

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12 Sep 2016

The Art of Waiting

Axioo on film by Adi

By nature, I’m an impatient man. But nurture taught me that telling a woman to speed up while she’s doing her make up will only result in murder.

 

Therefore I summon Bubble Shooter to keep me from being murdered, as well as to be my best friend during those dreary airport, bank, and cosmetic store trips. The thing is though, Bubble Shooter will never turn you into a patient man. It only keeps you busy enough that you forget about the remaining waiting time. Once it’s your ‘ding’, you do what you’ve been waiting to do, and then carry on with your day.  

But when you're on a hospital’s cold chair, in front of a birthing room, waiting for that first cry, Bubble Shooter would then be practically useless. Candy Crush Saga won't do the needed distraction either. You keep looking at the clock anxiously. You scroll up and down your contact list trying to reach someone to channel the nervousness. A shot of scotch is an option, but there is nothing that essentially can help you ease up, except the euphoria of finally tucking your newborn into your arms.

That’s when you learn the beauty of waiting. The art of being patient. 

I come across similar sentiments in film photography. I huff and puff every angles and burst shutters all over the corners with my digital camera. But as soon as I get my hands on my film camera, time suddenly moves in slow motion. The sun mellows down, my breath is in sync with my heartbeat. I have opportunities to be extra careful. My instinct is directed to catch the flying lights. 

Film photography isn’t designed to be fast. It is not styled to show off engineering sophistication. It is not concepted for people who are ambitiously trying to win every single race. 

And I don’t want to win anything anymore. I want this romantic encounter with time to last a little bit more, until the sun sets and a session ends. Right after twilight, I collect the eggs of the day, which, of course, are basically the rolls of films, and send them to an incubation house 16.000 km away in Alabama, to be scanned and processed. I have to wait for about a month for those eggs to be fully hatched.

Instead of finding an outlet to distract myself, each day I'd rather save a prayer for those eggs, that the hatchlings would all turn out healthy and happy. As soon as the confirmation email shows up, I excitedly jump onto my feet, rush to the closest wifi access, and begin to admire the anticipated photos. 

Every photographer's vision is to create timeless photos. I believe, timelessness is formed when you make friends with time, without getting distracted by overthinking. It doesn’t need to be forced to create presence. It doesn’t need to be one of a kind. It doesn’t need to be acknowledged. A timeless piece doesn't have anything else to prove. It's authentic, soulful, and real. It’s a class of its own. I found my passion in film photography as I see how it channels my creativity to timeless photos.

Have I sold you enough? Now let’s move on to the tip of the spear. 

Wrapped along with this post is a collection of photos I did in film. The reason this post exists is to let you know that from now on we have special film photography package. Contact our marketing team to take a peek on that package, or go to our website and search under the term "film photo" for full portfolio.

 

Are you ready to experience film, and be part of timeless photos?

 

Cheers,

 

Adi

 

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08 Sep 2016

AXIOOLOGIE Hats by Fen

What is a hat? It started off as a covering for religious ceremonies, before becoming an indicator of social status. Wikipedia will tell you that in the first half of the 19th century, women wore bonnets that gradually became larger, decorated with ribbons, flowers, feathers, and gauze trims and that by the end of the century, there were many different styles of hats, such as the wide brims and flat crowns, just to name a few. Hats became a tradition. It began at horse racing events at the Royal Ascot in Britain and was adopted at other horse racing events, such as the Kentucky Derby in the United States. 

Hats always been special. And in modern days today, it is no different. A hat is a reflection of you. It’s personal. It’s a statement of your style and your confidence. It should make you feel special the moment you put it on.

Here at AXIOOLOGIE, as we are tickled by curiosity, we let ideas strike us like thunderbolts, and we make one-of-a-kind hats, with a touch of love and humor., in the hopes that it will fit your personality, your reflection, your statement.

This season, our exceptionally talented hat maker, has taken her inspirations from the brides and brides to be and has crafted hats especially for their wedding day. She has taken up the theme of opulence and decadence infused with floral creativity. Her collection of hats are made of the most popular hat-making foundations in the world. They are woven from the processed stalks of the abaca tree. Because it is made of natural fiber, it holds its colors beautifully. 

So, what is a hat to AXIOOLOGIE? We have always believed that hats are special and magical, not because the creativity of the talented hat maker is intertwined in between each beautiful weave, but because to wear a “Fen Soong Original” on our heads is pride all on its own and that is enough to make us feel confident and amazingly fashionable all at once. 

Muse @ordinary.belle @kartikalin @beatriceleonard 
Photo by @fensoong #axioofen
Hat by @fensoong @axioologie 
Brushed by @winnieneuman @momogi
Styled by @debbiekamil 
Dress by @monicaivena

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02 Sep 2016

Love Yourself

Gladdys' Portraits by Winson

When you look at yourself in the mirror, what do you see? What do you think of yourself? Do you focus on your weakness or your strength?

Some people develop low esteem because they don't love the way they look. They feel they are too short, too thin, too fat, too tall, too ugly, too dark and when we got down to the bottom line they will say “I am not good enough”. Usually, people look down on themselves. They magnify their weak points and ignore their strong points. Some think they are being humble by doing so, but actually, they are depriving themselves the opportunity to enjoy their lives on daily basis. 

One thing that can make you love yourself less is comparison. You are unique, you are beautiful. You don’t need to be anybody else, because this world needs you, what you have and what you can bring. Love yourself, including the way you look and you will bring out the best in you.

To love yourself means to accept yourself as you are and to come to terms with those aspects of yourself that you cannot change. It means to have self-respect, a positive self-image and unconditional self-acceptance. It doesn’t mean being arrogant, thinking that you are better than anyone else, but it means having a healthy regard for yourself knowing that you are a worthy human being. It’s important to remind ourselves that no one is perfect. We all have strengths and weakness and we certainly possess the resources to work on improving ourselves.

Love yourself, so you can love others. If you’ve ever been on an airplane and listened to the instructions before take-off, you are always instructed that in case of an emergency, you must first secure yourself before securing anyone else including children. This is so that you are able to live long enough to help others, if you are severely hurt or dead you are no good to anyone. The trials of life are like airline crashes unless you are secure in your own journey you are in no position to be of service to others. You cannot sit around and wait for approval from others. Work on accepting yourself. You are the only "you" that you have. Until you love yourself, you will not be able to love anyone else. 

When you love yourself you endeavour to take care of yourself physically, mentally and emotionally. You take care to look and feel your best by nurturing your body, mind and spirit. Whatever negative you may be seeing now, rejoice, for it is only temporary. Your future is bright! Remember God loves you the way you are. So do love yourself too. 

 

Love, 

 

Winson

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30 Aug 2016
All the way to the bottom already?