Just 6 months after attending Do Lectures USA and less than a year since my first Do Lectures Australia, I think it’s safe to say that I’m totally hooked on what a fellow Do’er simply referred to as “TEDx, but bush”. A 7 hour drive from Melbourne, Do Lectures Australia once again took place in the beautiful Victorian high country in Glen Valley at Payne’s Hut. It’s a land without phone reception or internet access, and a sky with seemingly more stars than negative space. I couldn’t have been happier being back in the thick it all to photograph for another 6 days of incredible people, great conversation and a good community. This is what I saw.
This year brought a number of exiting new experiences, both professionally and personally. I walked 100km, photographed under the stars of the Californian desert and surpassed my record for the most number of shoots in a year! It felt so fast though, and I’m still struggling to understand how I managed to pack it all into a year. Here is my top 14 from 2014 in photographs:
Graze – There were a few new additions to my playful food photography series, including some hot potatoes.
Shotkit – I was asked to photograph and talk about some of the gear I use, organised neatly, so I put together a little timelapse video of the process:
360 – Melbourne Hip Hop artist 360, was the subject of an “Ink not Mink” campaign which I photographed for PETA.
Do Lectures Australia and USA – I photographed Do Lectures Australia and also made my way to Do Lectures USA where I met some great minds. I came back inspired and ready to make some big changes.
Oxfam Trailwalker – A painful and exhausting experience, but a truly rewarding and memorable one was training with a group of friends to walk 100km in 34 hours, to raise money for Oxfam Australia, and we did it! Registrations for Trailwalker 2015 is closing soon, get in quick!
Scott Spark – Scott Spark released his new album, muscle memory, which I had photographed the album artwork and promotional photography for. I had taken some playful photographs on a Nishika 3D lenticular film camera during our shoot, which I scanned and turned into this gif:
Peter Berner – I worked with Australian comedian and TV personality Peter Berner, on some new promotional imagery and finally got to use the yellow backdrop that I had been wanting to use for months!
…And I got in! I photographed this night portrait of William Wilkinson, late at night in the desert at Phoot Camp.
PDN Cover – One of the most incredible things that came out of the Phoot Camp experience was this collaboration with Nate Bolt, who flew his drone across the desert as we captured it’s light painting. We ended up getting the cover of the January 2015 issue of PDN!
Travel things – I tacked on a few extra things to my US trip, which included attending Do Lectures USA, a Creative Mornings summit in New York, catching up with colleagues, friends and family and going to Sleep No More (if you’re ever in NYC, it’s a MUST). This is a summary of the experience in one photo:
Squam Lake – Between events, I spent a day out at Squam Lake, New Hampshire. Exactly what I needed to see me off on the last leg of my journey to New York. I also put a photo essay up on Exposure, which you can see here.
Handy Series – Although still in it’s early days, what started out as a series on gang signs, soon turned into a series on creatives and the work they do with their hands. I’ve got a bunch of people lined up to take part in this project so stay tuned for an update!
And for a special bonus 15th, I wanted to share my favourite gif with a bunch of new friends from different Creative Mornings chapters, getting down and attempting to moonwalk at the Summit After party (photo by smilebooth):
Have a great holiday season everyone and all the best for 2015!!!
7 hours from Melbourne in Victoria’s remote North East is where you’ll find Payne’s Hut, a beautiful getaway for city dwellers and tourists all year round. Over the long weekend, Payne’s Hut hosted Australia’s first ever Do Lectures, a one of a kind gathering of like minded individuals, ranging from passionate change makers to social entrepreneurs. With just 70 attendees and 20 speakers spending 3 days together, camping and attending talks and workshops, it’s well described as “a microcosmic community that eat, sing, meet, learn but most importantly, get inspired.” I couldn’t help but draw parallels between Do Lecturers and the “Edgeware” community I was involved with in Brisbane, who even held a conference called “DO Well”. I was fortunate enough to be a part of the DO community and be inspired by some brilliant minds. This is what I saw:
And of course, you can’t have a Do Lectures without using every last bit of energy sending everyone off with full body waves:
Wow. I’m amazed at how fast this year has gone by. I moved to the beautiful, vibrant and creative city of Melbourne, made new friends, watched a billion comedy shows and worked with some incredible new clients. Here is my annual wrap up of my top 13 from 2013.
Michael Doneman – One of my favourite portraits of the year was of Michael, a friend and former business coach.
Bay of Fires – I worked on some editorial photography for a story on “Walks of Australia” One of the most beautiful walks we did was the Bay of Fires, in Tasmania. It was stunning.
Banana shoot – My new business cards will have “Fruit Balancing Expert” written on them. I worked on a few playful food photography images for a personal project.
Chrissie Swan – I worked with the beautiful Chrissie Swan for some imagery to promote her new book. I also worked with her on a different shoot, but more on that in the new year! 🙂
Semi Permanent Melbourne – Semi Permanent in Melbourne had me on my feet for two crazy big days, photographing the event and also shooting video. I saw some great speakers and came away totally inspired. This is a portrait of fellow photographer and speaker, Magdalena Wosinska.
iPhone Photography Awards – In the cold of winter, I received a few honourable mentions for some of my Instagram photos submitted into the iPhone Photography Awards. This was taken during a Melbourne heatwave, and had me wishing all year for that warm weather to come back around again. Still waiting, Melbourne!
Otway Harvest – Travelling with a group of international journalists, I worked on capturing the food culture of Melbourne and surrounds. The highlight was shooting at Otway Harvest, the beautiful ocean side truffle farm of chef, Steve Earl. I’ll put together photo essay of this trip once the story is published in the new year!
Earlier in the year I photographed Field Trip Melbourne, a creative conference primarily for artists, illustrators and designers, brought to fruition as a collaboration between Australian Infront and The Jacky Winter Group. What I loved about it was the strong focus on practical demonstrations, rather than just slideshows and presentations that you usually get at most creative conferences. It was one of those days that left me totally inspired and had me constantly distracted by what the speakers were actually creating on stage. We heard from the ever inspiring Jacky Winter artists: Ben Sanders, Eamon Donnelly, Luke Lucas, Madeleine Stamer, Mimi Leung and Oslo Davis. With the next Field Trip event coming up at the end of the month in Sydney, I thought I’d share a few of my favourite photographs from Melbourne.
Field Trippers got some nice goodies from the sponsors. I love my Mail Chimp shirt. It’s so soft.
A long time inspiration of mine, Eamon Donnelly was one of the speakers. I shot this candid portrait of him during an interview with Saxall. It’s probably my favourite from the day:
I’ve been a big fan of Creative Mornings talks since seeing the inspiring Laura Miner, founder of Phoot Camp, speak on the topic of “Why We Work“. Last week I was asked to capture the Melbourne event, featuring Beci Orpin, who spoke about happiness and running her own race. Here are a few of my favourite moments from the event. You can check out the full set on flickr, here.
It’s been such an incredible year, with fun new projects, exhibitions, new friends, travel and amazing new clients. I’ve put together a wrap up of my top 12 from 2012. And of course, I had to post it on 12.12.12 at 12:12.
Matt Tucker – I helped Matt Tucker document his beautiful tattoos by renowned Japanese tattoo artist, Horiyasu. The final product was an incredible large framed print on metallic paper. It was truly rewarding to work on this passion project with Matt and produce something that he truly loved.
New Zealand – My birthday weekend was spent in Auckland, New Zealand, taking photos and playing tourist in such an incredibly photogenic country.
Phoot Camp 2012 – I caught up with old friends and made many new ones at Phoot Camp 2012 followed by an exhibition in New York. It was truly one of the highlights of the year, with a trip to San Francisco, Chicago and Boston thrown in! The trip also inspired a new personal series of mine, titled “In their shoes“.
Darren Lockyer – Rugby league legend Darren Lockyer sat for his portrait for an editorial piece I photographed for WISH magazine. It was inspiring to work with someone so accomplished, yet so humble and authentic in character.
Finders Keepers Melbourne – I’ve started to focus on working out of both Melbourne and Brisbane. The Finders Keepers Markets, which I also shot in Melbourne a few years back was impressive in scale, as was the beautiful light that hit everything inside the venue.
IPPA award – My obsession with capturing moments on my phone actually paid off (well, slightly), with two of my Instagram photos getting two honourable mentions in the 6th annual iPhone photography awards.
Mark Visser – Sand filled my camera gear as I spent a morning on the beach photographing big wave surfer Mark Visser, most notably known for his death cheating big wave ride at night, which earned him the nick name “Night Rider”.
Von Vintage – I took my Von Vintage work on a road trip to exhibit at analogue gallery, Strip of a Lifetime, in Newcastle. This is a video from opening night.
Go Health – Billboards around the city started to fill up with my work with Go Health Gyms and Big Fish. Seeing work appearing larger than life always invokes an odd, giddy feeling of excitement in me that never gets old.
Foot Locker – I worked on a few Footlocker campaigns in Melbourne and Brisbane with the Famous Group. I ws thrilled to see this Summer campaign finally hit the stores and I can’t wait to see the results from the other shoots.
Sofitel – I worked with Sofitel and Underbrand to create imagery for their new magazine, Enchanté. I shot some delicious looking food photography and got some great city views.
Seven with Another – I teamed up with talented “Maker”, Adam Head, to collaborate on a project for art exhibition, Seven With Another. We created a large spinning cube that would fill the room with light when triggered by the flash of a camera. I’m working on a side project with this piece, which I’ll share soon.
Stay safe and have a great holiday season everyone! I’m looking forward to an even better 2013!
A good friend of mine, Lani recently came across a beautiful vintage hire shop and analog art gallery in Newcastle called, “Strip of a Lifetime“. She instantly thought of my Von Vintage project and urged me to get in touch. I checked them out and fell in love. The shop is home to an original coin operated 1960’s photo-booth and their tagline is, “Dedicated to the preservation of the Vintage Photography Experience”, one of the driving forces behind the Von Vintage project.
The space itself is supported by Renew Newcastle which aims to provide unused spaces to artists, cultural projects and community groups. I couldn’t think of a more like minded endeavor to get Von Vintage involved with. So after exchanging a few emails with owner, Paula Birch, I’ll be road tripping down to Newcastle to exhibit my work on the 27th of September! Opening night will be a part of the Renew Newcastle’s Spring City Walk, which I am very excited to be a part of. And I couldn’t have asked for a better time to be in Newcastle, the exhibition also coincides with the This Is Not Art festival!
Please help spread the word, or drop in if you are in, or able to get to Newcastle! Hope to see you there!
When: Thursday, 27 September 2012, 4- 7pm
Where: Strip of a Lifetime – Analog Art Gallery
Shop 20, Food Court Level, Market Square, 119 Hunter Street Mall, Newcastle, Australia
If you’re in New York City, come and check out some of the work that myself and a group of 35 incredible photographers from Phoot Camp have put together. The show is a part of “Photoville” and will include over 30 shipping containers, housing work from around the world. Head over to Pier 3 at Brooklyn Bridge Park in Dumbo to see the amazing work that came out of this weekend of 35 photographers taking over a summer camp, but stay for the rest of Photoville: a beer garden, dog run, shipping container-sized camera obscura, and exhibits from our heroes like The New York Times and Magnum.
Try to make it on the 22nd when most of us will be there, but if not, stop by anytime before July 1st to see the show.
Earlier in the month, I photographed friend and freelance journalist, Andrew McMillen with his seven year long, well nurtured head of dreadlocks. I did a simple portrait of him in the lead up to shaving them off in support of the Leukaemia Foundation and I also photographed him after a very close cutthroat razor shave for a “before and after” series. Here are a few images from the shoot. I can hardly recognise him anymore.
You can read his thoughts on his experience with dreads and hair as a social object, here.
Over two years ago, I found an old Brownie box camera which sparked the idea to create an ongoing series of work. I decided that I wanted to preserve inspiring vintage design and aesthetics by shooting a timeless series, all shot on vintage film cameras. Since then, I’ve spent hours keeping an eye out for beautiful, once loved keepsakes to capture forever. A countless number of rolls of film ran through cameras that barely worked, and film got fogged in X-ray machines, but I eventually landed with my true vintage camera love, the Hasselblad, which I used to shoot this series. Finally, this weekend I’m putting the Von Vintage series up on the walls of Urban Grind, a great coffee shop that also hosted my previous BNE project series. The coffee is the best, and so is the company so head in there and check out the prints! I’ll be heading in there a few times throughout the next few weeks so if you are keen for a coffee and a chat, just email me and we’ll tee it up!
Urban Grind, 121 Latrobe Terrace, Paddington November 27th until December 23rd 2011
One of the biggest highlights of last year was no doubt the opportunity to head over to Los Angeles to meet and hang out with some inspiring, creative minds at Phootcamp. This year, I’m doing it all again in Marfa, Texas! As part of the application process, we had to shoot a self portrait (see last year’s here). The portrait was inspired by everything I learned at last year’s camp and included a few recurring themes from otherpeople’sphotos! The shirt I’m wearing is inspired by this “Nate Bolt!” shirt by Steph Goralnick. The portrait has also been featured along with the many other talented Phoot Camp attendees here on Pictory, an always beautiful and inspiring website created by Phootcamp founder, Laura Miner. I can’t wait to meet all the new faces and really dig deep into getting creative with such an awesome bunch of people!
Here’s a timelapse video of the creation of the shot! It was all shot with speedlights, for a higher sync speed and water resistance! Thanks to Elleni, Toby and Michael for all their help!
Here are a few of my shots from Phoot Camp last year:
I recently worked on a fun little promo for a great fundraising event in support of those recently affected by the flooding in Queensland. If you live in Australia, or perhaps even if you don’t, you’d probably know about the devastating flooding that has just swept through much of the states of Queensland and Victoria.
It all came and left so suddenly, but a full recovery is looking like it will take months. Since the waters receded, we’ve seen amazing community efforts, from thousands of volunteers, to donations and services in all professional fields. In response to the floods, friends from Josephmark, Map Magazine and Big Fish are doing their part and have teamed up to organise a “Flood Party to end all Flood Parties”, a fundraiser to support the Premier’s Disaster Relief Appeal, for those most affected by the floods. I love these guys and the work that they do, so it was a real honour to be asked to shoot their event promo image:
So if you’re keen for a good night out, and want to help out, come along to Rise, which will be held at Laruche. Entry is free but you’ll need to register your attendance on Facebook at RISE – The flood party to end all flood parties or by emailing: All proceeds from orders from the “Flood” menu will go directly to the Premier’s Disaster Relief Appeal.
If you can’t make it to the event, but still want to help out, you can make a donation directly: here. I live on one of the roads where the flooding occurred here in Brisbane, and was lucky enough to not have been severely affected like many of my neighbours.
Here are a few photos I took of my local shops and the water as they started to recede. My photos only tell a small, perhaps more lighthearted part of what happened and the real stories came from the following days of cleanup, drenched in contaminated mud, helping to rip out entire residences and businesses, to which I didn’t feel right bringing my camera along to.
Perhaps it’s a few days late, but here are some images from my top 10 shoots of 2010! It was an incredible year.
In no particular order…
Japan – Momiji
I head back to Tokyo once or twice a year and most often in the winter time. At this time of the year, the Momiji leaves (Japanese maple) dominate the treeline and cover the ground in parks. I really love the way these leaves look against a nice bokeh.
Phoot Camp – Dan Busta
I traveled to New York, Boston and Los Angeles earlier in the year where I met some of the most inspiring and creative people and took part in Phoot Camp, where I shot this portrait.
Michael Hill Jeweller – Jewellery Photography
To be able to shoot for Michael Hill‘s catalog was a great experience. Working against an impressive existing collection, I learnt a few new tricks of the trade when it comes to this type of product photography. It’s probably some of the best product work I’ve done to date.
TEDxBrisbane – Event Photography
Modeled after the US based annual TED conferences, TEDxBrisbane was an Independently organised TED event. The day included talks from a diverse range of prolific thinkers and doers. I shot all the TEDx events held in Brisbane in 2010 and have been truly inspired by them all.
Green Heart – Campaign and Editorial Photography
I worked on an image library for Green Heart, an environmental sustainability program in Brisbane, with the focus on creating carbon-neutral city by 2026. It was great to work with and meet so many inspiring people dedicated to building a better and greener city to live in.
Philippines – Bohol Island
It was a busy time for me in January. I had just come back from a freezing winter in Tokyo, returning to spend a few hot days in a Brisbane summer. Before I had a chance to settle back in, I was off to shoot a wedding in an uncomfortably humid Philippines. With all the travel, changes in climate, and stress of working in a new environment, just watching the warm rain roll in took me to my happy place. With good music playing on my headphones, a big wedding shoot behind me, and big drops of warm rain splashing off my feet, it was the perfect way to unwind and enjoy the rest of my stay.
Tiger Airways – Cover shot and Editorial Photography
I had the pleasure of working on an exhilarating and colourful editorial shoot for Tiger Airways, which had me following biker Mac Swift around the Tweed Valley in Northern New South Wales. I was asked to capture the journey along some of the Valley’s beautiful rain-forests and beaches, which eventually led me to dangerously balancing on the back of a moving Harley, trying to get the cover shot! Definitely one of the most thrilling shoots of the year.
Von Vintage – Film Photography Project
2010 was a big year for film and creative work for me. With a new Hasselblad, I continued work on my film project, Von Vintage. The site is soon to be relaunched and will also be selling prints! Keep an eye out!
Lomography Spinner 360 – 35mm film toy camera
I’d have to say that my most used camera (other than my SLR) has to be the 360 spinner from Lomography. It’s a camera that literally spins 360 degrees (or more) in your hand, exposing a long strip of 35mm film, including the sprocket holes! I was in Melbourne, shooting the Finders Keepers Markets when I found this puddle. You can also see some other shots of mine on the PHOTOJOJO website!
Fadez – Promo Photography
I worked with former Reds rugby player, Charlie Fetoai and the team at Fadez Men’s Barbershops for a pitch they were putting together for MTV. This isn’t one of the images used, but I found the antics and outtakes to be some of the funnest.
And an extra one of myself from a series I’m working on…
For the last few months, working towards making Help Portrait happen again in Brisbane has probably been my biggest focus. It was actually also my last shoot of the year for which I’m thankful for as it was probably the most rewarding. Help Portrait is a day where photographers, makeup artists, editors, printers and assistants come together to use their skills to brighten the day of those in need. It’s an event in it’s second year that is currently held in over 300 locations around the world. The idea is so simple and can be replicated across many industries, the greatest example of that being Homeless Connect, held biannually here in Brisbane. The Help Portrait movement and many others like it, brings the realisation that there is always a new way to help others directly using the skills you have, it’s often just a matter of finding the best way to do it. For photographers, I think Help Portrait is one of these ways.
Thanks to the help of the team from last year as well as quite a few more keen and very generous professional and budding photographers, volunteers, printers, editors and makeup artist, we once again had a great day shooting portraits for people from three local charities. We worked with Lifeline – Disability Services, Red Cross and Wesley Mission this year and despite not everyone we invited able to make it due to the rain, still managed to give people something great to smile about. I’d like to thank the team, everyone who donated towards the cause to make it happen as well as Santa who showed up towards the end of the day! Please get in touch if you are keen to get involved in any shape or form next year. Here are a few behind the scenes shots.
After the success of a small event held in Brisbane last year, giving portraits to the children and families of the Starlight Children’s Foundation, Help Portrait Brisbane have been busy planning an event on a much larger scale.
On December 5th a group of local Brisbane photographers, assistants, editors, makeup artists, printers and volunteers will be participating in Help Portrait, a global movement of people who are using their time, equipment and expertise to give back to those in need this holiday season. In a collaboration with Lifeline – Disability Services, Red Cross and Wesley Mission, the team will be giving free portraits and prints to the people of these charities. Since the event last year, I’ve been inspired to organise a number of different “Help Portrait” styled events, providing portraits to people with disability, terminal illness and the homeless. The power of something as simple as having a portrait taken always seems to bring a bit of happiness to their days, particularly to those that don’t have the opportunity to do so.
But we need your help. Through donations collected by the public we hope to also provide professional printing on site to give to the guests on the day. We’re hoping to cover a few inevitable costs that go into such events, such as printing paper, ink, snacks for guests and venue expenses. If you can spare a few dollars, it would go a long way in giving someone a beautiful portrait and making sure events like this can continue to run in the future.
How can you help?
Click “ChipIn!” below, or follow this link to help us fund the cause! Any donation large or small is appreciated!
MORE ON HELP PORTRAIT:
Initiated in 2009 by a call-out by American photographer, Jeremy Cowart, Brisbane’s collective of Help Portrait photographers hope to establish an ongoing community of hobbyist to professional photographers interested in not just the act of ‘taking’ but also in ‘giving photos’.
I was in Melbourne on the weekend as the photographer for the Finders Keepers Markets, a rapidly growing bi-annual event held in Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney. It was the first Finders Keepers held in Melbourne and was probably their biggest yet. I think it’s says a lot about the creative community in Melbourne. Here are a few of my favourite shots:
I’m currently expanding to base myself out of both Brisbane and Melbourne so don’t hesitate to get in contact for any portrait, commercial or wedding photography in the area!
Late last year I was the photographer for Brisbane City Council’s bi-annual Homeless Connect, which provides a much needed range of services to the homeless population of Brisbane. Included in the services are medical and legal services as well as covering the most basic of needs through accommodation referrals, clothing and food. Last November, I covered the event in a mostly candid and documentary style, but soon realised that combining it with some ideas from another event we organised last year, Help Portrait, would allow us to give much more to the guests on the day and in a more direct way.
This year, I teamed up with the amazing Lynda Evans and Toby Scott, to shoot, print, laminate and even burn images to disc. We hit the ground running and had no chance to break until it was all over, with people eventually starting to congregate around the booth, checking out their photos and waiting for their turn to have their portrait taken. We shot portraits for about 170 people and gave the equipment, kindly supplied to us by Epson, quite a workout! We met some amazing people and heard some moving stories of how people were going to use their photos, and who they were going to give them to. It seemed like everyone wanted to have their photo taken to share with another friend or loved one that wasn’t there. We heard about people wanting the photos to give to their mothers for Mothers Day, family overseas and a mate on the “inside”, some just wanted portraits of their children or with friends. There was a couple wanting pregnancy portraits and even some people who wanted to have “before and after” haircut shots! When I first thought about bringing a portrait space to Homeless connect I really wasn’t sure whether it would work or be something that was needed, but after seeing the joy that something as simple as getting a nice portrait taken can bring, it really re-enforces my belief in the power of “photography for good” and the impact it has on people.
Many thanks to Toby, Lynda, Epson Australia, Brisbane City Council, Volunteering Queensland, all volunteers and service providers for making this kind of event possible. I’ve shot a few “Help Portrait” inspired events since our first one last year but am hoping to make it a much more frequent and sustainable way to give portraits. If you know anyone keen to support, through printing supplies or in any other way possible, please let me know! For more information on Homeless Connect and how to get involved as a volunteer or service provider in the next event in November, please visit:
Early this month, Brisbane hosted it’s very own community run TED event or “TEDx“. It was one of the most inspiring local events I’ve had the pleasure of being a part of. Modeled after the Long beach based annual TED conferences, the day included talks from a diverse range of prolific thinkers and doers. Co-hosted and organised by Paul Fairweather and Carl Lindgren, with the help of a number of sponsors and volunteers, the day was buzzing with inspired conversation and the ‘spirit’ of TED. As a photographic sponsor, I had the honour of shooting some inspiring speakers and captured some great moments in the lead up to the event. A massive thanks and congrats to the organisers and everyone involved. Here are some of my favourite shots from TEDxBrisbane. More images can be found on the TEDxBrisbane flickr page .
And finally, I’d like to share the first TED talk that introduced me to these “ideas worth spreading”, soon after they started releasing the TED talks online. It was Jeff Han’s presentation on multi-touch technology. From touch pads on laptops to the Apple iPad, it’s crazy how within 5 years of this talk, it has become so common place. As Jeff says, this technology will “Change the way we interact with machines from this point on”, and it has.
Brisbane’s creative community can feel like one big happy family at times, so shooting for Finders Keepers this weekend was lots of fun. An event originating in Sydney, the Finders Keepers markets supports local designers and artists through a two day independent market. I spent most of the day strolling around, listening to music and chatting to stall owners about their creations and the ideas behind them. It’s really left me feeling re-inspired to focus a bit more on my side projects like VonVintage, and the BNE project, to bring more to a photograph than just a print on a wall or an image online. Here are some of my favourite stalls and shots from the day. More images can be found in the Finders Keepers gallery.