neither an end nor a beginning but a going on

Well, here we are. The end of another year, another decade. Out with the old, in with the new, eh?

The past year has been none too shabby; the past decade was a mixed bag. The next year and decade are bound to be full of ups and downs, but if I have anything to say about it, they’ll be full of adventures, creativity, travel, new experiences, and more photography than you can poke a stick at.

Some “fast” facts about the last decade for me:

I opened this decade (and the new millenium) in “style” (okay, Liverpool, rain, port-a-loos with busted doors and illicit drugs might not equate to everyone’s idea of “style”!) at Cream 2000 at Pier Head in Leeds, after a wonderful few weeks exploring the UK and catching up with friends and family, local and imported. Orbital brought us into the new mi


If you’re in Melbourne, you should get along to the launch of Visible Ink’s 21st issue at The Empress on Monday 9 November – from 7pm. Go along and help celebrate, and get in early to grab a copy.

There will be author readings — Alyson Hose, Moreno Giovannoni, Simon McInerney and Lu Sexton — music from Greer Turner (Modular Lounge) and Imogen Halstead (Indigo Hotel) — and gushing editorials.

Unfortunately I’m not in the state, but Allison and her Visible Ink colleagues will make you more than welcome.

If you want to know how to get your clammy hands on a copy in Melbourne, or if you’re not in the state or not in the country but interested in picking up a copy, go here

In case you’ve not guessed, that’s one of my images on the cover, and I believe I have a couple of other images inside.


I haven’t been photographing myself much lately, as I’ve been rising around 4:50am to catch the 6am bus to the city to start work at 7:30am. Working till 3:21pm, then often not managing to make my connecting bus at Griffith Uni, so having to sit at the busway station for up to an hour before finally getting my connection and arriving home about 5:45pm. By around 10pm I have to head to bed in order to get enough sleep to do it all over again the next day.

My latest mantra is “the end justifies the means…”

Suffice to say I don’t have much time for much of anything at the moment.

And yet I’m going to give NaNoWriMo a go commencing tomorrow; I’m working on some plans for a couple of new stores on Etsy; and I am trying to edit my backlog of non-self-portraiture; making travel plans for Phil

my pussy. let me show you it.

Today I went down to the Gold Coast Arts Centre to see what bargains I might find as the costume store was having a sale.

I managed to pick up four wigs, a corset and this disarmingly creepy, but ever so cool, kitty. All for $65.

I’ve taken a bunch of photos with my kitty (unnamed as yet), but a lot of them have come up badly because my auto-focus is playing up and has been for a few months now :o( Time for an upgrade, but it will take me a bit of time to save up for my next camera.

always the bridesmaid...

It’s been a rollercoaster of a week.

I tried to go to bed around 8pm on Sunday night, but of course didn’t fall asleep until well after 10pm. Had to be up again at 1:45am in readiness for being driven to the airport at 3:30am for my flight at 5am to Melbourne.

A couple of hours spent reading over my presentation for the umpteenth time, catching a little bit of sleep, chomping on some Qantas breakfast, moving forward in time with the Daylight Savings the rest of the east coast outside of Queensland observes, and failing at pretending I wasn’t nervous as all hell.

A quick drop in to Mat’s to drop off my bags, change and pretend to someone else that I wasn’t nervous as hell.

And then I was at the Toyota Corporate Headquarters waiting to give my presentation. I was forty minutes early and

neon pilgrim

Lisa Dempster with her new book, Neon Pilgrim and emcee and fellow author, Simon Groth at Avid Reader, Brisbane.

This past Wednesday night I had the pleasure of being in attendance when my friend Lisa Dempster launched her first full-flung, non-fiction book, Neon Pilgrim at Avid Reader in the West End of Brisbane.

*Seriously unfit and unmotivated, Lisa Dempster is an unlikely candidate for a gruelling outdoor adventure. But when her life needs a shake-up, she decides the only thing for it is to hike the henro michi, a 1200 kilometre Buddhist pilgrimage through the mountains of Japan.

Lisa plunges into life on the road, getting well off the beaten track and experiencing the highs and devastating lows of solo long-distance hiking. Along the way she sleeps in a public toilet, befriends a mo


Photographer and graphic designer Nick Kind got in touch with me through my site about 18 months ago.

Hailing from Leicester, England, he’s been in Melbourne for about 3 years, and we share a penchant for capturing the minutiae of everyday life. His series The Shore and some of his portraiture particularly caught my eye when I first visited his site.

Two days before I left Melbourne, we finally met up in person and did a shoot in the evening at a studio on Smith Street in Fitzroy. Nick wanted to explore the idea of feeling trapped and was looking for a model, so asked me if I’d be that model.

It was a lot of fun and really easy; much less daunting than I’d expected. Especially considering we only talked on the phone for the first time the night before, and had only met in person an ho


My friendship with Claudia Phares began with a dead wombat. Specifically, this one

A mutual friend, Melissa, told me she’d come across my print hanging on Claudia’s wall at a party one evening. Though Melissa had never seen the image before, she instinctively recognised it as one of mine and asked if she could take it down to confirm the details on the back of the frame.

As the print had sold in a Dutch auction at Brunswick Street Gallery, and I’d not known the buyer, it was strange and cool to hear of a friend’s random encounter with it.

Sometime not long after that, Claudia and I met each other at an opening at BSG. From there we became fast friends and I discovered that, not only is she a voracious collector of the work of emerging artists, she is an emerging artist herself.

After n

drawing restraint

About two years ago, Melbourne-based painter Paul Ruiz came across my profile on Artabase and got in contact with me about my work.

I was extremely flattered, as on viewing his work online, I was greatly impressed with his portraiture and painting technique.

When the next opportunity arose to view his work at Lindberg Contemporary in Collingwood, I was sure to visit in order to see his paintings up close.

Having gotten to know him better in person over the past two years I’ve found him to be particularly generous with his time, and willing to share his knowledge and experiences as a practicing artist.

I then also had the opportunity a few months ago to sit for him as a model for some sketches. One of his charcoal sketches from the session is shown above.

Aside from being rendered in car


An image from a recent collaboration with Claudia Phares

For someone like myself who is something of a self-confessed control freak, who enjoys self-portraiture specifically for the fact I have total artistic control over all aspects of the image, you would think I’d consider “collaboration” to be a dirty word.

Not so, however.

Though until recently it’s been something of a haphazard happening for me, it is fast becoming an experience I embrace and relish the fruits of.

Obviously in portraiture there is always at least some element of collaboration. Even where the concept and intention is primarily formulated and directed by the photographer, few models are totally malleable blank canvases and will undoubtedly always give some direction to a shoot through their actions, expressions, and

i had a dream about this place

Well, it’s the second one I’ve had, but they’re both the same. They start out that I’m in here, but it’s not day or night. It’s kind of half-night, you know? But it looks just like this, except for the light… – Mulholland Drive

So I have now officially moved. I am currently in a state of flux, otherwise known as Queensland.

The last week of my move was anything but smooth, given my removalists called me at 7:15am two days prior to the agreed collection date to let me know they were collecting my belongings anytime after 12pm that day. Apparently they were supposed to advise me of this trifling detail at some stage over the preceding weekend but hadn’t seen fit to pick up the phone. Brilliant work on their part, given I had allowed for another two evenings of packing and therefore was n

she wears a sundress in the middle of winter

Wow. Almost a month without an update. Anyone would think I’d moved house…

But I haven’t yet. Well, not properly. I’m currently staying with my friend Mat as I sold my bed two Saturdays ago, and I’ve been packing and sorting and garage-sale-ing and exhibiting and all manner of other things.

Unsensored09 and Corangamarah Art Prize have both been and gone.

The opening of Unsensored09 was very enjoyable, catching up with other Silver Miners and also with a friend I randomly ran into about a month or so ago whom I hadn’t seen for about 10 years, and meeting his lovely wife.

The opening of Corangamarah Art Prize at Otway Estate Winery & Brewery was also a great night. Meeting those behind the prize, being interviewed briefly for the Colac Herald, and being totally spoilt by attentive staff en

in her own image


I promise, this is not just another tease! We were so close to releasing the book to the general public at the beginning of April, then found out we could donate the proceeds to Madre after all, which meant a bit more administration work before the book could be set free to fly into your hands.

A lot of love, a lot of work, and a lot of lovely ladies make this book a true slice of awesome!

Now all the work is done, and the book is available for you to drool over, so get your clammy hands on a copy now!

And for a double-shot of awesome, the first collection She Took Her Own Picture is still available through the FSPASG account on Blurb. You can find it through the above link.

In Her Own Image features work from 87 artists. You can see their names, and work via links on my bl


As I mentioned in my previous post, I received my latest book, enVisage, self-published through Blurb by courier on Wednesday!

It looks gorgeous, if I do say so myself.

And if you don’t believe me, you can now preview the full book, buy a copy, and vote on the book in the People’s Choice Award portion of the Photography.Book.Now competition!

Go on, you know you want to…

two in a row

It’s continuing to be a busy, busy time for me!

I did another client portrait shoot this week: an author photo for Lisa Dempster’s forthcoming book, Neon Pilgrim; and received my new book in time for the first Melbourne Blurb meet.

I went to see Salvador Dali: Liquid Desire at the NGV last week. I spent four hours absorbing this comprehensive retrospective of his work, bought a catalogue and am thankful that I bought an unlimited entry ticket to the exhibition as I’ll definitely be going back to soak it all in more.

I also had the chance to drop in to see Three Fantasies at Obscura Gallery in St Kilda, which was beautiful. Some amazing work from Deborah Hally, Sayraphim Lothian and Tebani Slade.

My lovely friend Claudia Phares seems to be gathering a little collection of my “dead things

every day is like sunday

Phewf! Another crazy week and a half, and I never feel like I have enough time in the day!

I’ve been scanning some shots I took in Blackpool back in 2001 for a submission; my new book of portraiture is in the very last stages; I have another submission almost done; my print for Unsensored09 is ready to collect from the framer, and I found out last week that Truth Lies Beyond has been selected as a finalist in this year’s Corangamarah Art Prize!

I have to find a way to get there for opening night this year, as this is my second year in a row being selected and I didn’t get to go last year.

On top of all that I am trying to make a start on culling down my belongings for the move, and went to an old friend’s wedding on Sunday night.

…And some of my self-portraiture is featured in the latest

listen, do you want to know a secret?

Do you promise not to tell?, whoa oh, oh.
Let me whisper in your ear…

The big news of the week?

I’m moving to Brisbane in early September. The reasons are twofold:

One I will simply sum up by saying that I’ve been really unhappy lately; depressed would be an appropriate word for how I’ve been feeling. So I need to make some changes, and moving should resolve most of this discontent.

The other part is about being realistic: I really want to travel to the US and UK next year, possibly even make a permanent move back to the UK, and paying rent in my current abode or in a place on my own in Melbourne is not really allowing me to pay off debts and save for that.

So I’m going to board with my parents in Brisbane to reduce my overheads, repay my debt, save for my trip and, if my parents

part of the furniture

I’ve been a bit frustrated of late.

I have been very inspired with self-portraiture and non-self-portraiture ideas, but for various reasons have not been happy with the shoots that have come out of my self-portraiture attempts of late.

In some instances I’ve chickened out of doing shoots. For example, I have a specific idea for a (respectful) shoot in the burnt out bush around St Andrews and Kinglake but was aware of how conspicuous I would have been to folk driving by the perfect location I found, and how, despite my intentions, my actions may have seemed disrespectful.

In some instances I’ve not found a location that suited for what I was after and decided I’d rather just have a relaxed day enjoying chilling out on the beach (Lorne and Mooloolabah).

And in other instances I’ve gone

a summer wasting

I’m back in Melbourne now, after 3.5 weeks of “holidays” at my parents’ in Brisbane. I use quotation marks because I was still doing things like putting together submissions, taking photos (though barely any self-portraits), working on grant and award applications, researching, etc., etc., etc.

I also took the time to answer some questions about my art for Brian Sherwin at Myartspace which you can read here

Whilst in Brisbane I visited the Queensland Gallery of Modern Art to see The China Project, Breaking Boundaries, Creative Generation and the Spencer Finch exhibition. I also dropped in to see the Josephine Ulrick & Win Schubert Photography Award 2009 at the Gold Coast City Art Gallery I’ll post more about The China Project soon: I was really impressed by a couple of the artists inc

the nostalgia of slide nights and new members

Whilst some people talk of how much they dreaded and were bored by the traditional family slide night, I was always a fan of those evenings spent in a darkened lounge room, the curtains closed, watching colourful images from my parents’ and our collective family’s trips away.…

Whether photographs from the trip to the USA my parents took when my brothers and I were in early primary school; a trip that brought us each various souvenirs including t-shirts, before souvenir t-shirts became all post-modernist and declared themselves uncool (mine was from San Francisco and said “Go climb a street”). Or photographs from Antarctica and other strange far away places my Uncle John traveled to. Or even the photographs from the travels we three children ventured on with my parents around the Northern


I caught a flight to Brisbane last Thursday morning and have been having somewhat of a relaxed time whilst here.

Catching up with my parents, visiting my grandmother, a birthday dinner, some graveyard explorations, and a bunch of “time out” so far.

I have plans for working on some grant applications and such whilst I’m away, especially since I never really feel comfortable working on my parents’ computers, as their screens are not calibrated even slightly and I don’t trust my editing to be right when I can’t see things the way they should be.

I have no idea if the shot above looks right to what I want and so it seems a bit of a waste of time to edit work, then have to re-edit it when I get back home and see the colours, contrast, etc., are not how I actually want them.

So yeah, I suspect

the persistence of memory

The collaboration I recently completed with Los Angeles photographer Aline Smithson is included in the latest issue of F-Stop Magazine

And if you’re in Melbourne, come on down to the opening of the Kodak Salon 2009 at the Centre for Contemporary Photography, corner George & Kerr Streets, Fitzroy, from 6-8pm tonight.

in her own image

About a month ago I took over the task of designing In Her Own Image, the second collection of self-portraiture from the Female Self-Portrait Artists’ Support Group. Miss Aniela, who had originally been intending to design the book in InDesign, had found her career taking off in a big way and realised she just didn’t have the time needed to devote to putting the book together and all that entails, so I somewhat foolhardily agreed to pick up where she’d left off.…

After countless hours spent downloading, prepping and importing photos; arranging image combinations and formatting within Blurb’s Booksmart software with the assistance and suggestions of many of the book’s design team; adding image and artist credits and contributor details; and then proofing it all with the assistance of a cou

in her own image

About a month ago I took over the task of designing In Her Own Image, the second collection of self-portraiture from the Female Self-Portrait Artists’ Support Group. Miss Aniela, who had originally been intending to design the book in InDesign, had found her career taking off in a big way and realised she just didn’t have the time needed to devote to putting the book together and all that entails, so I somewhat foolhardily agreed to pick up where she’d left off.

After countless hours spent downloading, prepping and importing photos; arranging image combinations and formatting within Blurb’s Booksmart software with the assistance and suggestions of many of the book’s design team; adding image and artist credits and contributor details; and then proofing it all with the assistance of a co

brisbane, kodak salon, prints

I recently booked my flight to Brisbane to visit my parents for my birthday (the 17th of April). My flight arriving in Brisbane on 16th April and returning to Melbourne on 10th May is costing me far less than I expected. Apparently I had more Qantas Frequent Flyer points than I thought, so my whole fare was covered, I just had to pay the tax, carbon offset & insurance :o)

So if you’re in Brisbane, drop me a Bubblemail and let me know if you’re maybe interested in catching up for a photo walk or a drink. My parents live a bit of a way out and I don’t drive, so my mobility may be a bit limited, but I’ll see what I can do :o)

If you’re after a print from my stores I’d recommend getting your order in before I jet off, as I won’t be able to post / ship prints whilst I’m out of town. Obviou

the death mook

Speaking of books, or rather, mooks, Vignette Press are back with their second mook! Following What Is Our Sex? the new mook to be released later this month explores all things death-related and asks the question “How Do We Die?”

A sampler of the mook is now available to download from the Vignette Press website, and an invite to the launch is open to all of those lucky enough to be in Melbourne.

I will have a few images included in the mook, though no writing in this one, and plan to join the other artists and writers involved to celebrate the launch.

in her own image

Work is currently underway on a second collection of photographic self-portraiture by an assortment of members of the Female Self-Portrait Artists’ Support Group to be titled In Her Own Image

The book is scheduled for release through Blurb in March and will include work from 88 artists including myself.

Featuring a wonderfully surreal image by Erika Pham, the cover, shown above, has been designed by the very talented Elle Moss and Heather Evans Smith

While you wait eagerly for its release, you might like to pick up a copy of the first collection, She Took Her Own Picture

drowned in endless night

For those who haven’t already “heard”, I’ve recently updated my website including adding a few new sections, consolidating a few sections, finally updating the sepulchre section, updating the 365 Days store and making brand new limited edition prints available in the general store. So go and check it out!

I also have an image in the latest round of the Saatchi Showdown. You can vote here

it's all in the details

I have one image in issue #33 of F-Stop Magazine.

I’ve been paired to collaborate with Aline Smithson for issue #34, and after many ideas bouncing back and forth between us, we have a plan and will be shooting over the next month to produce a series of 12 images.

I’m looking forward to the images that Aline will create. She has a wonderful eye for irreverent, slightly surreal and beautiful images. My favourite of her portfolios are Unreal/Reality, Hugo, Imagined Experiences, Paradise, Hollywood at Home, Odds and Ends, and the beautiful series of images of her daughter and son.

I also highly recommend you subscribe to her blog as it is a wonderful resource of photographers worth discovering the work of.

Visit my blog to see some of my favourite images of Aline’s.

darkness & light only u

coming and going

Four of my images accompany two short stories featured in the current issue of the Australian edition of The Big Issue

The short stories are The Grey River Rest Stop by Romy Ash, and The Other Side of the River by Georgia Blain.

If you’re in Australia make yourself and a Big Issue street vendor happy by picking up a copy for $5.

Available until January 12, 2009.

desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait
desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait