olive and oak

elize strydom's photo journal

Category: muse



happy birthday, amelia


Happy birthday to this beer brewing beauty. Over the last three years, Amelia has become one of my best friends and closest confidants. We share a desk, a microphone, a love of words, Sharon Van Etten and Bright Eyes. We calm each other through bouts of anxiety and she helps me untie all of the knots in my head and heart. She challenges me to think harder and feel deeper and gently pushes me to be better. Her mind intrigues me, her radiance captivates me and her stories are simply stellar. I love you, AM. 


she waits, seething, blooming

now hear this000052680032

I wanted to be closer to her because she seemed like the future to me. – Quiet, Dave Eggers

A portrait of Amelia at the Little Marionette and Ange at home with her cello. 

(Click on each image to enlarge)



While I have absolutely no desire whatsoever to enter the world of traditional fashion photography, from time to time I do enjoy grabbing a gorgeous gal and taking a few pretty pictures. This is my dear friend Amelia on our friend Ange’s rooftop. The end-of-the-roll shots below feature Dan (going far too close to the edge for my liking!) and Ange’s awesome ‘backyard’.


birthday girl


One of my favourite favourites turned 24 yesterday. Damn, I love this girl. She has crammed a whole lotta living into those few years and faced some hectic challenges along the way. I admire her intelligence and wit, her voracious appetite for living and feeling, her energy and playfulness and her uncanny ability to store the lyrics to every Kanye, Jay-Z, Kendrick etc. song  in her noggin and spit them out on demand. Happy birthday, Angie girl x


little stevie


Her name’s not really Stevie, it’s Merryn Jeann. But when I met her, years ago, I thought ‘Stevie’ fit quite nicely. My goodness, this young one inspires me endlessly. She radiates warmth and joy, beauty and creativity.

One evening in December she put on a show in her Byron Bay backyard. Friends, family and fans were treated to a gorgeous set of original tunes under the stars followed by an Indian feast cooked by her dear mama. It was so special; a night I won’t soon forget. I’m excited about the journey little Stevie is on and where life will take her.

Check out her band potato potato.


let me tell you, brother, i just don’t know anymore


Dear Jonny is back in Sydney for summer after a year on the other side of the country. I’ve missed the socks off this boy. He’s my wise older sibling and my crazy kid brother all at once. Our conversations are mostly made up of questions. We want to understand the world and the people in it but it’s all very confusing. Summer days are long; we’ll keep talking.