Beyond the Bags: Luna's Jungle
We shot the photos for our first Baggu collection, Luna’s Garden, in the summer of 2020 at a stunning “Hawaiian chateau” as I like to call it, on Tantalus. The property belongs to my father in law, and it’s where I got married. It’s breathtaking, and every time I go there it’s a little bit difficult for me to leave. Indeed we stayed until the sun went down. In fact we even raced from a second location (a small snippet of jungle with a swing, that would be a foreshadowing of the collection to come…) back up to the house at the top of the mountain in order to capture the last amazing blaze of glory before it disappeared below the horizon. Luna leapt off a short wall with her silhouette outlined against the brilliant, warm sky and it was magnificent. After the photoshoot I went back home and cried. I had been looking forward to this diversion from monotony for weeks, majorly craving being able to spend a few short hours with friends, and just like that it was over. I felt like Luna, except she had escaped, and I was back, still mostly sequestered, still with so much anxiety of the unknown ahead- no vaccine yet, people still getting sick and dying, our little shop still closed.
Cut to a little over a year later, and we were back up a mountain for Luna’s Jungle, the second installment of our Baggu collection. Ossipoff Cabin wasn’t the obvious choice of locations for this shoot (one of the many rainforests here on Oahu would have sufficed) but if you know me, not even in my heart of hearts, but much more plainly and openly, I am a hedonist; a disciplined one, I like to believe, but still, I will go to great lengths to have an adventure and to have fun.
The narrative for Luna this time around is that she has been on the go and has loved the freedom of being able to roam, but she happens upon this wonderful, deserted cabin in the woods (yes, it’s a little bit Goldilocks) and takes refuge. Once again, I sort of felt like Luna; I could have stayed there for a bit, holed up in a heavenly hideaway. But unlike Luna, a lot of the joy of being there came sharing from sharing the experience. This shoot was even more incredible than the last, and it was something that once again, I needed and craved. The vaccine brought us hope when it arrived, but it wasn’t the savior that I had idealistically dreamed it would be back in April when I got my second shot. And by August when I had scheduled this shoot with a forceful hand, the cases were rising at a beyond alarming rate and there was a pervasive sense of frustration and exhaustion over the never-ending divisiveness that has embedded itself in our lives because of this virus. Ironically my disgruntlement was almost at a peak. So our adventure at Ossipoff Cabin was for me, a moment of escape, when I could forget for a second what was happening down below. And we were so lucky to have one of my besties, the incomparable Brad Watanabe, make it up the mountain just in time to capture some amazing video of those wonderful fleeting minutes. I am so thankful for that, and for a friendship that has meant so much to me during a time that has kept us so isolated from one another.
Luna’s Garden brought me out of funk (see previous blog) And we turned something that could have been a disaster (a travel collection released when travel had been halted) into something lovely and good. Well into our second year of Coronavirus, it’s now apparent that this is a long haul, maybe a forever haul, but I won’t stop, and we won’t stop in our attempts to bring joy into people’s lives with our prints and accessories. Luna’s Jungle is a continuation of that commitment (alongside our handmade line of course) and I can’t wait to see what Luna does next.
Jana Lam is a Honolulu, Hawaii based design company that focuses on products and accessories for an endless summer. Lam's beach front home once served as the production house of her handmade in Hawaii line of one-of-a-kind, hand-printed and sewn apparel and home accessories. In Fall 2017, printing and production moved out of the home studio, and the Jana Lam Studio + Shop was opened in Kaka'ako.