“But First Coffee” is a morning hello for most Jakartans that haven’t had any confident to go through the day ahead and in need of caffeine induce. This morning hello inspires “But First Coffee” – a coffee shop that is located in Dharmawangsa area. With its calm and comfortable nuance, this café is the best destination to start the day or afternoon chill after a long work. But, in this lucky day, we have two different kind of hello. A cup of café latte and a couple of lovely sisters that has been known by their profession as duo fashion photographers, Sally & Emily.

These duo has started their debut since 2012 and never had a plan to stop ever since. Their names are known for their collaboration with figures among fashion, and in recent time, they’ve helped Nylon Magazine to shoot their latest issue and stared Kiko Mizuhara’s sister as their model – Yuka Mizuhara. Let’s have a talk with these lovely two!

This morning, you both are greeted by cups of great coffee. What is your preference in coffee?

Sally: I’ve been in this place before and I always love this place. I love café latte and cappuccino. I also order their Americano sometimes. And I think this place delivers great cups of coffee!

Emily: Can’t agree more! Same like her, I also like café latte and cappuccino. I just ordered hot café latte. I actually love this place because I love the open area and great space. It’s good for a picture and if you need some leisure.

What makes you both a duo photographers like today?

Sally: Before we were professional photographers, we were playing behind the lens since high school. When Emily enter his senior year in college and I was in my 12th grade, we decided that we made Sally & Emily. It makes us easier to work and help our friends for their projects or works. And there it goes, Sally & Emily. It was back in 2012.

Emily: Yes, it’s started as a hobby. And we always work together, maybe you remember that deviantart era? We made an account together and post our work there, despite its aim, either our own work or our friends project. Then we had a thought to patent our name as Sally & Emily as duo photographers.

Where did you study your photography skill in the first place?

S&E: Actually, we studied photography by ourselves because everywhere we go we brought along our camera. Well, we don’t bring our camera today actually hahaha. We used to play along with analogue camera until we learned how to use professional camera.

S: Maybe because we’re used to take a picture of anything, therefore we’ve learned how to use good angles in photography and such.

E: We also tend to observe people’s work and of course we turned it as our references.

 And who is your favorite photographer?

Sally: For international photographer, I really like Petra Collins. I think her works depict some crucial issues such as body image and sort of that stuff. Most of her works are picturing teenager and young adults. And also feminism. Maybe I can conclude that I’m a bit of feminist because I think equality between gender is really important.

Emily: Maybe right now I really like Michal Pudelka’s works. He’s a young fashion photographer yet he’s so talented. His recent work was with Valentino for its recent campaign. It’s a rare thing in high fashion to hire such a young talent because most of them use mature photographers that has been known for a long time. Michal’s concept of picture is always more than a person, mostly in group. So it gives you this ‘crowd’ mood. His age is maybe about 20 years old I guess.

Sally: But most of all, we both love to experiment with things. We always try to play with any concept possible. So, we don’t have this dark or girly or clean mood, for example. Our references to photographers may change in time cause we’re easily bored hahaha.

If there’s any object beside human, what is your favorite thing to be taken by your lenses?

Emily: Hahaha ghost? Just kidding! Maybe a place that has “mood” in it. You could imagine that the same space may give you varies of mood. Either it’s caused by the warm sun light or because of rainy season or maybe because it’s a shiny day. It doesn’t have to be a huge space. I think I really love that kind of concept.

Sally: Oh, maybe it sounds a bit absurd but I love to take a picture of water. But it’s this kind of water that has been biased by the sun light, so it reflects this beautiful sparkling light. And also it has a little bit of wave on the surface. It doesn’t have to be any specific water, any kind of water, like in swimming pool or by the sea. Despite of its kind, it’s the water that reflects sparkling light and a bit wave on the surface.

So, talking about taking pictures, would you tell us about works that you did and upcoming project?

Sally: We’ve made our own photography book named “Close”. It’s actually a collaboration between related artist such as Sarita Ibnoe as our illustrator and also Mahadi Asman as writer.You can find our book in all Kinokuniya stores and also we sell it in Melbourne.

Emily: For our upcoming projects, we want to make another photography book with feminism theme. So maybe it sounds like we respond with daily issues and stigma between women and men. Like, maybe you may hear that someone would say “I don’t want to date this girl because she smokes cigarette” or “I don’t want to be close to her because she has tattoo on her body”. But what’s the difference, though? Yea, so that would be our theme in our next project.

Ah, that’s a really cool project, I hope it goes well. So, as fashion photographer, that would be no surprise if you both are also very stylish. For both of you, what is the style that represents you both?

Sally: In fact, I hate heels. I prefer to wear sandals. Maybe because of Jakarta’s hot temperature and high humidity that makes me more comfortable to wear sandal.

Emily: Maybe I could say that my style would be blend in with the locals. Like when we were doing our job in Japan to collaborate with Nylon Magazine as photographers to took picture of Kiko Mizuhara’s sister, Yuka Mizuhara, we tried to mix our style braver than here.

Sally: Like when we were in Bali, we wear crop top and short pants. And when we’re arrived in Paris, mostly we use trench coat with calm nuance of colors.

Emily: But when we were in Japan, it was really fun. We played around with motives, color, and such. People in Japan are also dare to be different in style so that brought us along to be braver too.

Sally: Well, since we’ve arrived in Jakarta, we use mostly monochrome nuance. And to allocate my boredom, I tried to do layering with tops I have. But, I think your (Emily) style is more gothic, she likes to wear choker and stuff like that.

Emily: And I think, you (Sally) are an experimenter in style. Maybe for clothes that I wear, people have to look closely to see any uniqueness in style. But it’s different for her, people notice her uniqueness in style since the first glance.

So we just talked about your style, and what if you both are men?

Emily: What a great question you have. Maybe if I were a man, I would be a man that is not so stylish and dapper. Maybe my footwear collection would be two or three pairs. I would wear simple and casual clothes, and I would know that every piece I wear is comfortable yet cool. I wouldn’t mind the brand that I wear, as long as it looks good and makes me look well established, economically hahaha. I wouldn’t be a guy that follows any trend, more like down to earth and low key sort of person.

Sally: For me, maybe I would be that clean, dapper, and not trying too hard to look good kind of guy. Maybe thin-see-through shirt with collar woud be my choice. Well, mostly I would be a guy who is born to be stylish despite any clothes that I wear and eye-friendly. That doesn’t mean he has to be handsome. Sometimes, handsome guys aren’t pleasing the eyes yet this average guys are pleasing. To make it clear, I would be the guy who knows what he wears and not trying too hard.

And still talking about fashion, what’s your choices in local brands that you prefer?

Sally: I love Nikicio. And for high end designer, I like F. Budi. Her designs suit for formal attire and I really like it.

Emily: I like Duma recently. It has great quality of materials. For high end, I like Biyan. In fact, our wardrobe are in the same closet, so basically what Sally wears, I wear. And what Sally likes, I like. So our reference in choices are in fact the same.

Sally: Yap, can’t agree more. We also trade each other shoes hahaha.

That’s awesome. So, talk about daily life, what’s your morning routine?

Sally: We have slightly differences there because I am not a morning person. For me personally, I like to reflect more on things that I am grateful for. That doesn’t have to be a prayer to God. Like, grateful for little things in my life. Such as my gratefulness because the air conditioner isn’t so cold last night or I didn’t have nightmare. That makes me more grateful about life eventually and now it’s already in my daily life. It’s quite a life changing. I suggest you do the same hahaha.

Emily: I’ll sneeze every morning hahaha. Not in every morning, but I tend to have allergy caused by morning condition. And mostly I play this song called Wake up, to wake her sleepy head.

Last but not least, what do you think about Indonesia’s fashion industry in 10 years?

Emily: In my opinion, fashion in Indonesia is all good. In Indonesia, a lot of people want to make things and there are a lot of platform to show them. Plus, there’s a lot of fashion goers in here.

 Sally: There’s a lot of fashion district that you can focus on such as stylist, make up artist, photographer, even blogger. You can actually make a living through fashion. And because of that, a lot of people want to work in this field. I’ve heard that across Southeast Asia, Jakarta and Bangkok are centers of fashion. For me, that’s something that gives us hope about fashion development in Indonesia.

Emily: Maybe, if the circumstances are more stable, I’m quite optimistic about the industry that’ll rise more than today.


“But First Coffee” merupakan sebuah sapaan pagi bagi kebanyakan warga Jakarta yang masih hilang semangat dan membutuhkan secangkir kopi yang nikmat. Sapaan ini yang mungkin mendasari berdirinya sebuah kafe dengan nama “But First Coffee” yang terletak dibilangan Dharmawangsa. Dengan nuansa yang nyaman dan menenangkan, kafe ini tepat dijadikan salah satu destinasi untuk memulai hari atau pun mengakhiri hari kerja yang panjang. Akan tetapi, pada kesempatan kali ini, kami mendapatkan dua sapaan pagi dari dua hal yang amat menarik. Secangkir café latte dan sepasang kakak-beradik yang namanya sudah anyar di bidang fashion photography.

Ialah Sally & Emily. Duo fashion photographer yang memulai debutnya sejak tahun 2012 yang hingga saat ini masih terus aktif dan eksis di bidang fotografi. Simak perbincangan pagi kami dengan kedua kakak-beradik ini!

Pagi ini kalian disambut dengan pilihan kopi yang sangat enak. Kalau kalian sendiri suka dengan kopi jenis apa?

Sally: Aku pernah sih ke sini sebelumnya. Aku suka café latte atau cappuccino tapi yang aku pesan barusan itu café latte. Dan menurut aku kopi di sini enak banget.

Emily: Aku juga sama kayak Sally sih, café latte atau cappuccino. Kalau yang aku pesan sekarang juga café latte. Aku suka dengan tempat ini juga, areanya cukup terbuka. Bagus banget sih untuk foto dan mencari ketenangan.

Apa yang membuat kalian memutuskan untuk menjadi fotografer?

Sally: Sebelumnya kami sudah menjadi fotografer sejak SMA. Lalu di tahun terakhir Emily berkuliah dan saat itu aku duduk di kelas 3 SMA, kita memutuskan untuk mematenkan nama kita berdua Sally & Emily. Alasannya sih karena dari dulu sering bantu-bantu proyek teman dan jadi kepikiran untuk mematenkan namanya. Jadi akhirnya terbentuklah Sally & Emily. Saat itu tahun 2012.

Emily: Iya, dulu sih sebenarnya berawal dari foto-foto iseng. Terus kita kan kerja selalu sama-sama, mulai-mulainya sih sebenernya dari zaman deviantart kita bikin account bareng. Kita post aja hasil karya kita yang udah pernah kita lakuin, untuk bantu-bantu temen atau emang proyek kita sendiri. Lama-lama ya udah kita patenkan aja. Akhirnya muncul Sally Emily.

Di mana kalian pertama kali belajar fotografi?

S&E: Sebenernya kita belajar fotografi secara otodidak yah karena kemana-mana pun kita selalu bawa kamera meskipun sekarang lagi enggak bawa hahaha. Dulu suka main-main dengan kamera analog, sampe akhirnya menggunakan kamera profesional.

S: Mungkin karena biasa motret juga jadinya kebiasa belajar tentang angle dan lainnya yah.

E: Kita pun juga memperhatikan karya-karya orang lain pastinya untuk kita pelajari dan kita jadikan referensi.

Kalau fotografer favorit kalian siapa?

Sally: Kalau yang internasiona aku suka dengan karyanya Petra Collins soalnya menurut aku karyanya dia itu masih ada pembahasan seputar body issue dan sebagainya. Biasanya sih dia motret dengan genre teenager dan young adults. Dan seputar feminsime. Karena bisa dibilang aku sedikit feminism sih, kesetaraan itu penting banget.

Emily: Kalo saat ini aku lagi suka banget juga sama Michal Pudelka. Dia fotografer yang masih muda tapi dia udah motret untuk campaign Valentino. Biasanya untuk high fashion seperti itu jarang bekerjasama dengan fotografer muda. Konsep fotonya dia itu selalu modelnya lebih dari satu dan selalu suasana ramai. Umurnya dia kurang lebih 20 tahun ya.

Sally: Tapi pada intinya, kita berdua itu try to experiment things. Kita selalu berusaha untuk memainkan segala jenis konsep. Jadi tidak terpusat hanya pada nuansa dark atau girly atau mungkin clean. Referensi kami terhadap fotografer memang sesuai dengan muse kita yang juga berubah-ubah. Mungkin juga karena kita bosenan hahaha.

Kalau ada objek, di luar manusia, yang menjadi favorit kalian untuk difoto?

Emily: Hahaha ghost? Just kidding! Mungkin tempat-tempat yang memiliki mood. Kamu bisa membayangkan kalau satu tempat yang sama walaupun bukan tempat yang besar, tapi ketika cahaya matahari mungkin sedang temaram atau mungkin lagi musim hujan atau lagi cerah, satu tempat itu bisa memberikan mood yang berbeda. Aku suka dengan konsep seperti itu.

Sally: Oh, mungkin ini agak absurd tapi aku senang memotret air. Tapi air yang bisa dibilang terkena pembiasan cahaya ya, jadi memberikan efek cahaya yang memantul gitu. Dan ditambah lagi dengan air yang bergelombang juga permukaannya. Air itu air apa pun, entah air di kolam renang, di laut, intinya air yang bergelombang dan terkena pembiasan cahaya.

Project yang pernah dilakukan dan upcoming project?

Sally: Kita sudah pernah bikin proyek fotografi berbentuk photography book berjudul “Close”. Di buku itu, kita berkolaborasi dengan orang-orang lainnya, seperti Sarita Ibnoe yang menjadi illustrator di buku kami serta Mahadi Asman sebagai penulis. Buku kami dijual di seluruh toko buku Kinokuniya dan ada juga yang dijual di Melbourne.

Emily: Kalau upcoming project sih kita akan bikin photography book lagi dengan tema-tema feminisme. Jadi seperti merespon ketidaksetaraan stigma antara laki-laki dan perempuan. Seperti yang kamu lihat, misal ada laki-laki berpendapat “Gue enggak mau pacaran sama dia karena dia cewe merokok” atau “Gue enggak mau sama dia karena dia cewe bertato”. Padahal kan sama saja? Hal-hal seperti itu sih.

Sebagai fotografer di bidang fashion, pastinya kalian pun punya style kalian sendiri. Menurut kalian apa ciri khas kalian dalam memainkan style di dalam keseharian?

Sally: Sebenarnya mungkin aku adalah orang yang amat sangat tidak suka memakai heels. Preferably, aku memakai sandal. Mungkin karena iklim di Jakarta juga kali ya. Dan di Jakarta aku lebih nyaman memakai alas kaki yang tidak tertutup. Karena rasanya lembab dan panas kalau di Jakarta.

Emily: Bisa dibilang style kita itu blends in with the locals. Seperti kemarin ketika kita di Jepang untuk memotret adiknya Kiko Mizuhara untuk Nylon Magazine, di sana kita lebih berani memadumadankan style.

Sally: Misal saat kita ada di Bali, kita pasti memakai crop top dan short pants. Kalau waktu di Paris, kita sering memakai trench coat dengan warna-warna calm.

Emily: Pas di Jepang seru sih, kita bisa mainin warna, motif, dan sebagainya. Orang-orang di sana pun juga berani untuk mengekspresikan dirinya jadi kita pun ikut lebih berani untuk memainkan sstyle.

Sally: Tapi sejak kita di Jakarta, kita lebih main di ranah monochrome ya. Dan supaya enggak bosan, aku sering memainkan layering. Aku merasa style kamu (Emily) lebih ke gothic sih, sering pakai choker dan sebagainya.

Emily: Dan menurut aku, kamu (Sally) lebih berani sih, eksperimental. Kalau aku diperhatikan dulu baru orang sadar kalau ada sesuatu yang unik dari aku, tapi kalau Sally tuh langsung kelihatan uniknya.

Kalau seandainya kalian berdua adalah pria, kira-kira kalian punya style yang seperti apa?

Emily: Wah pertanyaan yang menarik. Mungkin aku akan jadi pria yang tidak terlalu stylish dan dapper. Koleksi sepatuku mungkin enggak akan terlalu banyak, dua sampai tiga pasang cukup. Aku akan memakai pakaian yang simple dan casual, dan aku tahu kalau pakaian-pakaian yang aku pakai itu nyaman tanpa melupakan kerennya. Aku juga enggak akan telalu melihat brand dari pakaian yang aku beli, selama tetap terlihat bagus dan tetap menunjukkan kalau aku itu mapan hahaha. Mungkin juga aku bukan orang yang terlalu mengikuti trend, lebih ke arah down to earth dan low key.

Sally: Kalau aku mungkin akan jadi pria yang clean, rapi, dan not trying too hard dalam style. Mungkin kemeja-kemeja putih yang tipis akan jadi pilihanku. Intinya sih, aku akan jadi pria yang memang udah dari lahir itu mau pakai apa pun tetap stylish dan enak dilihat. Bukan berarti kalau dia harus ganteng ya, karena menurut aku banyak yang ganteng tapi bukan ganteng yang enak dilihat. Yang jelas, aku tahu apa yang bagus untuk aku dan enggak trying too hard.

Lalu untuk brand yang lokal yang jadi pilihan kamu itu apa saja?

Sally: Aku suka dengan Nikicio. Tapi kalo designer yang lagi aku suka itu F. Budi. Mungkin arahnya high-end dan untuk baju pesta dan formal.

Emily: Aku juga lagi suka sama Duma. Bahannya bagus, berkualitas. Kalo yang high end aku lagi suka sama Biyan. Sebetulnya sih lemari kita kan satu, jadi apa yang dipakai Sally, aku juga pakai. Dan apa yang lagi Sally suka, aku juga suka. Jadi, referensi kita berdua sama sebetulnya.

Sally: Iya Setuju. Sepatu pun kita tukar-tukaran.

Bicara tentang keseharian, apakah kalian berdua memiliki morning routine yang selalu dilakukan?

Sally: Agak berbeda sih, karena aku bukan morning person. Mungkin kalau aku lebih merefleksikan hidup sih, berdoa. Tapi bukan doa yang ke Maha Kuasa sih, lebih ke memikirkan hal-hal yang aku syukuri di dalam hidup. Karena banyak hal-hal di dalam hidup yang luput dari rasa syukur. Contoh kecil saja, misalnya aku bersyukur AC di kamarku tidak terlalu dingin, semalam tidak bermimpi buruk. Seperti itu sih. Hal ini membuat aku jadi lebih bisa mensyukuri hidup dan hal itu udah jadi comes naturally di dalam kehidupan aku. Sebenernya aku sangat menyarankan kamu juga melakukan itu sih hehehe.

Emily: Aku bersin-bersin mungkin ya hahaha. Sebenernya enggak setiap pagi juga yah, aku agak alergi dengan udara pagi. Tapi aku sering masang lagu  Wake Up kadang-kadang untuk bangunin dia (Sally).


Last but not least, menurut kalian fashion di Indonesia itu seperti apa sih, maybe in 10 years?

Emily: Menurut aku fashion di Indonesia itu tergolong maju sih. Karena di sini banyak orang yang mau berkarya dan wadah untuk menampung karyanya itu pun tergolong banyak. Dan ditambah lagi dengan pelaku fashion yang sama banyaknya.

Sally: Di sini juga banyak banget bidang fashion yang bisa ditekuni. Ada stylist, make up artist, photographer, bahkan blogger. You can actually make a living through fashion. Dan karena itu juga orang-orang yang berminat di bidang itu jumlahnya pun enggak sedikit. Aku juga pernah dengar sih kalau di ranah Asia Tenggara, kiblat fashion saat ini itu ada di Bangkok dan Jakarta. Menurut aku itu suatu hal yang cukup memberikan kita harapan bahwa fashion di Indonesia itu berkembang.

Emily: Mungkin kalau keadaannya lebih stabil, aku cukup optimis kalau industry kita akan jauh lebih pesat dari hari ini.

But First Coffee

Palaspas Building, Jl.Dharmawangsa No. 4, Dharmawangsa, Jakarta

email: hello@butfirstcoffee.com

Opening Hours: 8 AM - 10 PM
Average spending for two: IDR 70k

Editor Dwimayu Budinastiti

Photographer Krishna Pradana

Interviewed by Alisha Aprilia