Film directors Helena Brooks and Jae Morrison and their child Max (8) moved to Avalon Beach in 2022, in search of an inspiring home where everyday feels like a holiday. ‘Both of us travel a lot when shooting, so we decided to live where we’d want to holiday,’ explains Helena. ‘This location feels like paradise, while being close enough to a big city for biz.’
The couple discovered a 1970s home for rent with incredible views of Pittwater, and moved in 12 months ago. ‘We’re renting, but it’s our dream home, and we hope to one day buy it,’ says Helena. ‘They don’t call it the ‘insular peninsula’ for nothing—you don’t want to leave unless you really have to!’
Jae and Helena have styled the home as a joyful, plant-filled, ‘70s pad that fuses the best parts of the present with the nostalgia of the past. Their house provides the focus they need to work from home, balanced with whimsical details that evoke childhood memories and encourage relaxation.
Helena explains, ‘Being in a sometimes very high pressure job, I need to be reminded that we’re making entertainment and stories, and not to get too serious or stressed out.’ Items including the electric blue coffee table, painted bicycles suspended from the kitchen wall, and an underwater 8mm film camera built by Jae’s dad in the ‘70s to film killer whales (!) are both inspiring and reminders of the lighter side of life. ‘Things like oversized pencils on the wall and gummy bear lamps make me feel more like a kid,’ says Helena.
Above all, living in this house makes Helena, Jae and Max feel ‘super happy’ and inspired to create. ‘The area is outrageously beautiful and the locals are ridiculously lovely and interesting… The slower pace of life and being involved in the community here feeds the soul,’ says Helena.
Keep an eye out for Wellmania directed by Helena and starring Celeste Barber, coming to Netflix on March 29!