Family, Stories



I remember seeing Blake Mycoskie many moons ago on a news network. There was something not quite right about what I was seeing. Firstly this guy was really young, and kinda scruffy but in a good looking rugged way. He was in a third world country in a village somewhere surrounded by all these beaming children. The oddest thing was that the children were all wearing shoes, the same shoes. So began my admiration and fascination with TOMS, a company whose life motto is a promise that every product you purchase will help a person in need.

Some 30 million pairs of shoes given to people in need, sight restored to 250, 000 individuals and now by purchasing a bag of coffee from TOMS Roasting Co TOMS will provide one week of clean water to a person in need. One for One.

Walking into the TOMS flagship store in Venice Beach, where I shamefully purchased a chai and not a coffee, I was confronted by wall size images of these beautiful faces being giving the gift of sight. The faces of these children stopped me in my tracks…and it truly hit home what Blake had a created. A global movement of giving that was having a positive impact on communities in need around the world. He was helping us help others. I was inspired, I mean INSPIRED.

Right then and there I approached TOMS to photograph Blake with his family. He and his incredibly beautiful wife Heather are expecting their first child(probably right now) and I cant tell you how honored I was that they were going to allow Kane and I to capture these private moments of their soon to be family.

I fell in love with Heather straight away. She answered the door barefoot, no makeup and a smile that was truly friendly. Three, maybe four months pregnant at the time she radiated this girlfriend quality where I just wanted to hang out and chat, drink wine and talk, talk, talk. After meeting her it came as no surprise that her involvement with TOMS was as life consuming as Blake’s and it’s successes belonged in part to her.  Known as TOMS Chief Animal Lover Heather was inspired to start the TOMS Animal Initiative when she learned that wild lions are at a risk of being extinct. Partnering with non-profit animal conservation organizations to drive awareness and funding for global animal protection. The first partnership supported mountain gorillas in the Democratic Republic of the Congo’s Virunga National Park. Now, they are partnering with the Clinton Foundation and Wildlife Conservation Society to protect African elephants that are being killed by poachers at unprecedented rates for their ivory tusks. With the introduction of a special shoe collection starting with the limited edition Classics featuring embroidered images of elephants they are fighting to save, we can join TOMS in protecting these majestic animals from the killing, the trafficking and the demand.

Photographer Kane Skennar | Styling + Creative Direction Sheree Commerford |Location Malibu
ON THE BEACH | Heather wears Ryan Roche fisherman’s knit from Mamapapa with RRL denim shirt + Scosha bracelets | Blake wears Nudie jeans, tee from Barney’s, TOMS sunglasses and Scosha necklaces + bracelets
UNDER THE PIER | Heather wears Frame Denim overalls with Isabel Marant top and Rag & Bone hat + Scosha Bracelets | Blake wears RRL palm print chinos and cardigan with Barney’s t-shirt + Scosha necklaces + bracelets
Gypsy and Buddha the dogs wear Found My Animal leashes + Collar

Heather talks about Blake….

Status: soon to be dad

Style: natural

Next Life: wolf

Past Life: philosopher

Talent: patience

 Smarts: business

 Real Deal: Montana

 One Word: giver

 Warning: his schedule

 Right Now: extremely busy

So many words define who Blake is to me. My best-friend, my soul-mate, my hero, my favorite, my lover, my partner, and my husband. He is my gift from God who I cherish and adore. There is no other person who I can travel to 46 different places in the world within 52 weeks in a year, and still never feel like its enough time spent together. I am looking forward to seeing him grow into being a dad with our son this December and falling in love with him all over again.

Blake talks about Heather…

Status: pregnant

 Style: bohemian

 Next Life: lion

 Past Life: hummingbird

 Talent: intuition

 Smarts: street smarts

 Real Deal: montana

 One Word: caring

 Warning: blake’s schedule      

 Right Now: nesting

 My best friend is a girl named Heather. She is also my wife. And sometimes my shrink. She has the greatest dimples this side of the Mississippi and wishes her hair was thicker, but I like her hair just the way it is. She will be a mom soon, and I think that is truly her calling, and that the joy and wisdom she will gain from this next chapter will serve her soul well, and I am selfishly looking forward to her telling someone else to “be careful” and to brush their teeth. That is heather in a few words after a few glasses of wine on a Sunday afternoon, in my mind.