It all started when publishers, who in these days of cost cutting have limited budgets for ‘real photographers’, started asking writers to take photos to accompany articles. At first I saw the photos simply as ‘add-ons’, something I often only remembered to organize as I was about to head out the door. But gradually, I realized that more was required, that photos were integral to the articles and that a writer needs to provide striking visuals as well as words.
I attended some courses and invested in a decent camera. Most importantly, I enlisted the generous tutelage of the master photographer (and collaborator on my early book ‘Women of Substance’) Ponch Hawkes. And that was when I got hooked. An avid storyteller from way back, I became fascinated with how a single photograph can capture anything from a simple concept to a vignette to a novella, all in one frame.
These days I regularly have photos published with my articles in a variety of magazines and I have also had 2 covers. Some of these images you can see in the gallery below, covering topics from tango dancing in Buenos Aires to organic farming in Cuba. Last year I also became a photographer/blogger for the Anti-East-West Link movement here in Melbourne. It is a great thrill to think that my photos might have made a small contribution to that triumph of people power.
The image you see in the background of this and other pages is 'Time to Tango Buenos Aires', which accompanied my story 'Time to Tango' ('Big Issue', #454, 21 Mar – 3 April 2014). It was the winner of the People’s Choice Award at this year's Photonet Gallery photography competition.