Opening Message from Mr Ross Eason [Master Photographer, current AIPP President, valued Friend & Mentor] at the launch of ‘A Woman’s Journey’ Exhibition:
“For some in society the word “Regional” can infer lesser standard or quality but for those of us who choose to live in a regional area we understand “Regional” is a lifestyle choice. We want to be part of a community and contribute to that community rather than be part of a major city where anonymity is easy.
As National President of the Australian Institute of Professional Photography I mix regularly with Photographers from around this country and I know as a fact that Bambi is one of the most respected names in the industry both for what she contributes and the quality of her work. So much so, that some of her city peers ask her to photograph their families, some from interstate.
That respect extends overseas. I can name a dozen of the most respected international photographers who consider Bambi an Australian icon, yet she chooses to live in regional Australia.
It is fitting this exhibition is titled A Woman’s Journey because it reflects Bambi’s Journey in her career as much as the journey of the ladies whose stories lined the walls.
It is a daunting task to produce these images and put them on public display, to say to the community have a look at this ‘this is my work and judge me for who I am’. Equally it is a daunting task for the ladies in these images to share their stories, bare their souls, and more, in a public display. It is courageous and we have to congratulate all of you for having the commitment to your community to do so.”
Thank you Ross for your beautiful, kind words. B x
My own notes & Influences:
The inspiration for this project stemmed from a culmination of a few factors.
I was commissioned for a conceptual portrait piece by Tamara to illustrate her journey through a cancer prevention treatment. The entire process from start to finish took roughly six months and multiple sessions to complete. I set myself a task to learn very different and ultimately challenging techniques in order to fulfill the vision both Tamara and I had sketched out. I sat through hours of tutorials and sought opinions from my mentors to achieve the final masterpiece.
I was fascinated and intrigued by the concept of telling an in depth story, through a singular portrait. I wanted more than a normal portrait. This was a journey of both self-discovery and personal achievement for both of us, not to mention seeing the proud tears and gasp when Tamara saw her portrait for the first time.
I quickly realised that what I had created was a personal piece of art measured entirely by the light and love it gave the individual. I have always intended these pieces to be beautifully posed and styled in a manner that they will take pride of place, for all to see, be proud of and inspired by. I am drawn to a subtle colour palette and subdued tones. I feel it provides a gentle softness and a heightened measure of femininity. It’s the style I have become known for when photographing women.
In a world full of social media, I have become very aware of private and very personal battles, most of which are not aired to the public. We all have our own battles, regardless of what they are. More often than not, we just need a gentle reminder that someone is always worse off than us; to bring a little more perspective to our minuscule #firstworldproblems and more importantly to love and support those around us.
The following eleven portraits are of the Eleven beautiful and strong women I had the pleasure in photographing for this project & exhibition.
*** Many constant thoughts, prayers & love extend to the families of Leisa & Raphael who were taken away from us way too soon. We will always remember your beautiful smiles & the courageous bravery you have taught us. ***