herald

Tuesday 21 August 2018

Favourite things: Catherina Behan

Eve Arnold book I got my first beaten-up second-hand camera when I was eight or nine, and I've been hooked ever since. I see pictures everywhere. It's so easy to get lost behind the lens. Eve Arnold has taken some of the most beautiful photographs I have ever seen. I often go back to her Woman Unretouched, Hands and In China series.

Notebooks As a poet, you never know when inspiration will strike, so you have to be ready; and I always have notebooks and pens to hand -- by my bed, in my handbag, in the living room and at my desk.

Dance shoes One night I was sitting at home, listening to swing music in my vintage clothes as usual and thought: I really should learn how to dance to this. I've been dancing swing, lindy pop and blues ever since. My 1940s wedges and simple canvas shoes have gotten me through many hours on the dance floor.

Dress Growing up, I enjoyed watching old movies, and adored the 1940s style. I've been wearing and collecting vintage clothes for 10 years now; it suits my lifestyle. This original '40s Chinese silk gown is a favourite.

Headphones Music has always been a big part of my life. I don't go anywhere without my iPod, but it doesn't matter what kind of mp3 player you have if you don't have decent headphones. These are Sennheiser noise cancellation headphones.

My pillow I've been looking for this pillow all my life! Sad but true. Old neck and shoulder injuries mean I need a special 'low profile' pillow. I'm not even sure what it means, but it's saved me sleepless nights and physio.

Post-it Note My girlfriend wrote me this Post-it note about six years ago, and I've carried it around with my ever since. It's tucked into my wallet along with a passport sized photograph of her. It says I love you.

Hair accessories When it comes to my hair, I've had every style, length and colour you can think of. Over the years, it's been shaved, down to my waist, blue and purple, but now I just stick to accessorising it.

Passport: My passport is a storybook of my geographic history and I love looking back through its pages of stamps and visas. It brings back instant memories of each country I've lived in or travelled through. It's far too difficult to pick my favourite country, but Laos and Cambodia really had an effect on me.

Jug & Glasses: I grew up looking at this set in my grandmother's cabinet in her sitting room -- you know that glass cabinet with ornaments and nice things that never get used? When I moved away from home, she gave them to me. Four cities later, they're still in one piece, and I use them every day. Thanks, Nan!

Catherina perform at the Vertical Rhythm Club on September 20, at the Button Factory; and on September 25, at Nighthawks in the Cobalt Cafe. For more info, check out myspace.com/ catherinabehan

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