As the sons of Australia’s most celebrated international swimsuit model, Flynn and Cy Busson – cherished sons of Elle Macpherson and her ex partner French financier ex Arki Busson – were born celebrities.
Routinely snapped on their mother’s knee at fashion shows or in her tanned lithe arms at airports, the boys with the huge brown eyes and flyaway blonde manes became instantly recognisable to a legion of Macpherson‘s fans worldwide in the years after Flynn’s 1998 birth as the family jetsetted across the planet between luxury homes in New York, London, Europe and the Bahamas.
At seven, Flynn and his baby brother Cy, then two, retreated from public view – a decision Macpherson now says was a conscious one agreed up with Busson: “We didn’t think it necessary for them to be recognisable in public”.
Prior to the trip it was seven years since Flynn last came to Australia. He was last here in 2012 and is less familiar with the local beaches that made his mother’s beachy image than he is the beaches of the Bahamas where the family still have a home: “That’s where my love for the beach came from,” he tells Vogue.
Cy was here last year when he was employed during school leave as a jackaroo at historic Scone pastoral property Belltrees, the ancestral home of writer Patrick White, which operates as a horse stud and black angus cattle station.
“It was early mornings, late nights, but an incredible experience,” said Cy of his time on the land which saw his mother fly in from her adopted Miami to deliver him to the Whites.
He recently acquired his commercial pilot’s licence and despite his chiselled good looks – he has his mother’s dark lashes and his father’s chiselled chin – and well-connected circle of friends (as can be seen on his popular Instagram account) – Flynn has, for now, ruled out a career as a model.
“There’s no use pretending we don’t live like that. You know, the kids fly to Europe regularly, they went to good schools in England. We are an international family … but I have to say the most beautiful moments really are the simplest times when we’ve been brought together, things like road trips.”
And the occasional trip home to Sydney for a timely and historic Vogue cover shoot.
Vogue Australia editor-in-chief Edwina McCann said: “When Elle Macpherson featured on the cover of Vogue Australia’s 30th anniversary issue, Time magazine had just labelled the then 25-year-old ‘The Body’. It was 1989 and the crew, headed by photographer Graham Shearer, travelled to Western Australia to shoot on Broome’s Cable Beach and amid the surrounding bushland. The ensuing images were classic Elle: sun-kissed skin, windswept tresses and those long, long limbs.
“Fast-forward 30 years (yes, really) and it’s astounding just how little Elle has changed. She may be older and wiser but still has that body, and effortlessly owns the laid-back tousled beach look like no other. The biggest difference today, of course, if that she’s now mum to two grown sons – Flynn, 21, and Cy, 16 – who are just as genetically blessed as their mum but up until now, had never been photographed with her,” McCann said.