May 10, 2017

It is said that life imitates art.  This couldn't be more true when it comes to photography, whether you are posting selfies with your dog or a talented, trained photographer traveling the world.  Alls we are doing these days is sharing our own snippet of our present time and space.  Photography is never quite real life but it is a powerful way to evoke emotion and capture moments forever.  

Life imitates art.  This couldn't be more true than when we lust over today's Customer Crush, Kaui Souza.  

Kaui is gorgeous, witty, a great mother and is a muse to a very talented photographer, Jake Marote.  Jake has worked with reputable companies such as Red Bull, Patagonia, Olukai, T&C Surf and of course, The Lucky Honey. 

Kaui's pictures capture her passion for bikinis, they capture the bond she shares with her daughter, Peyton, her romantic side as well as a confidence and wisdom that every woman can appreciate.  

We have had the pleasure of working with Kaui on photoshoots and she always delivers.  

We've asked Kaui to share her top 10 photos and the story behind them. And we feel so lucky she obliged.  

So without further ado:  Kaui.

Almost 2 years ago, someone slid into my DM's and within weeks, my Instagram content got a face lift. #kidding. Shortly after dating Jake, I found myself on the explore page where I double tapped on a post by The Lucky Honey. I guess it's safe to say that I owe IG many thanks for 2 things, 1. My Man and 2. My bikini addiction.  The rest just unfolded very naturally... New bikini = Photo Shoot. My relationship both with my handsome photographer and the dolls of Lucky Honey have continued to sparkle.   I'm bias when it comes to a favorite photographer, but heck, I date one who allows me to be weird during shoots and call all the shots, including when it's over. Below are a few of my favorites- and I’ll explain just why. It's not always about the best photo. To me, it’s more about the memories and stories behind in which a photo captures. But low and behold, it’s not always rainbows and butterflies.

I was headed to Big Island to meet his family for the first time, but to ease the anticipation, the exclusive Tidepool Capetown made the trip with me. I remember walking out for the first time on the lava rock that sloped into the ocean. I called it a cliff - however, he still believes it was just a large rock. The waves crashed with force creating the ideal spot for his perfect vision. He told me to be careful and called out a few times, as I ran with fear to avoid the impact. Frustratingly, this took longer than imagined. Just then I threw in the towel, lost my patience and said - "take the damn picture". In his cool and calm voice, he replied "if you say so". He indeed got the shot and what had followed. My feet swept out beneath me and fear hit as I caught a mouthful of salt water with strawberries appearing on my knees, calves, and feet. Sometimes the photographer knows best.


This was a candid capture. We headed to Waioka after camping overnight and in need of a "shower". My 6 year old daughter and I played "Whale rider" and Jake just happened to have his underwater housing and camera in hand after shooting the beautiful scenery that this place has to offer. She'd squeeze my neck tightly when she was ready to come up for air. Being a single parent, I feel like keeping my head above water is tough at times, but she quickly reminds me with a little squeeze in her own way how grateful I am to call her mine. 

Our first "official" mother/daughter shoot with Maui Maka's very own- Kristy. It's always a party with Kristy, I just adore her. Let's just say, this mini human took charge immediately and then offered her assistance for a part-time job after school as a creative director. I wonder where she gets that from...hmmm.

A handful of photos well executed and "oh so fun". Free to Be Me's Stanette had the vision, Jake and Ryan had the task. This shoot was filled with fire, life, and laughter. I had a blast channeling my inner B (Beyonce) while trying my hardest to remain PG as we had a little one along shooting as well. I love to feed off of Jake's dorkiness and always go over the top to show him who's boss. I couldn't choose just one.


Shot by Joanna Tano, a beautiful Gem from Maui for summer 2017!

Topless outfit (hand raised immediately). Heck, I didn't spend 10k to hide under material. It's always a blast shooting with friends and sipping veuve between changes.

Jake allows me to have the best of both worlds in one photo. Over-unders are fun, and challenging. No two photos are alike due to the water lines and currents. Plus, my underwater face does not resemble a mermaid. (Still working on that breath holds, without looking like I'm running out of air.)

A little adventure never hurts. However, getting muddy and being eaten alive by mosquitos may not be my ideal day off, but this guy makes any destination worth it. My sister Miken, was able to snap a shot of us enjoying the beauty of nature and another’s

Our very first encounter, not with the dolphins or turtles, but with each other. Jake told me we were going for a swim. I manned up and took the challenge. Nearly 200 feet off shore, and hiding my fear of deep waters. Thankful for my Ehukai- covering majority of my limbs and chicken skin.

I can't believe this is the last photo I get to ramble about as I have so many I could share. A long distance relationship isn’t very ideal, yet many of us do it believe or not. I am given the opportunity to focus my attention on my daughter and job, while find time to be young and free again during small windows of opportunities. Once a month we make the trip to Oahu where she visits her father and I get quality time and provide my full attention to Jake and his wild adventures. This past weekend, he packed the jetski and we headed to the sandbar. Just the two of us and of course his camera.  But a 10 min shoot never kills the moment of romance, as we continued to laugh and joke with each other.


Okay, so, at this point we all want to be Kaui.  The message here is that pictures can never capture all of your life, but what may be captured can be the best of life. 

Stay beautiful Kaui, inside and out, thank you for sharing your amazing photos!


Kini Mama

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