I entered the 2017 Ekka Royal Queensland Show Photography competition in Class One - Monochrome (black and white) - Any Subject (open category). I am pleased to announce that I won first place with Boots 'n All, and second place with Me and Me Workers.
The Royal Queensland Show connects Queenslanders from the country to the city to celebrate and champion agriculture and the critical role it plays in our everyday lives.
Rural people depend on their community, neighbours, family, weather and their helpers to survive and produce the agricultural products for our great nation. The entries for this competition came from a recent photography session in Western Queensland which was inspired by my love of friendly country people and clear open skies.
I was invited to visit my old school friend Julie Mayne, who owns and works a cattle property in Drillham which is located six hours west of Brisbane. On that particular incredibly hot summers day in February 2017, it was 45 degrees (celsius). It was too hot for the livestock to be mustered but in the bush there is always something that needs repairing ,rebuilding or feeding. So I slapped on my Akubra hat and put my camera down to pull down the old cattle yards with the working dogs by our side. The winning photograph is of Julie putting on her boots after lunch to get back out into the heat to build the new cattle yards. I wanted each photograph to capture country life as it is. So the photo really shows that a life of working the land is one of no makeup, grubby clothes, well worn boots and a smile on your face because you love what you do, and you love your workers who are your dogs, cattle and horses.
I do enjoy getting out of the city and getting my hands dirty, new adventures, exploring new ideas and new places.
Thanks to Julie and her workers (the three cattle dogs), for being my inspiration for this photo and thank you to the Judges for recognising the simple beauty of country life.