tagged 35mm film

Renae and baby boy Ethan in Hudiksvall, Sweden, shot with my Leica M6

Lee and Bronte and some wild flowers in Hudiksvall, Sweden – summer 2016

Something about these streets | Stockholm, Sweden shot with my Leica M6

My brother Andre and his youngest daughter, Mosa

A bush walk in the Blue Mountains with my adventure buds – Edie, Anna and Simon.

Hugo and Holly and lights and fire at the Hill End Festival, April 2016

A long weekend at Hill End, a tiny old gold rush town a few hours west of Sydney, with the best people.

A long weekend spent in Hill End, a tiny old gold rush town a few hours west of Sydney, with the very best people.

Tillandsia love | A shoot for Plant by Packwood featuring Anne Moffat

Behind the scenes on a shoot for Plant by Packwood with model Anne Moffat

Based on a True Story | Amelia at Vaucluse House

Maddy, Isabella and I went camping at Uloola Falls (via Karloo Pools) in the Royal National Park and it was just right.

I Was Wondering 'Bout You and That Girl

Kind of Like Oceans | It was a public holiday and Bronte beach was packed. The surf was so rough and everyone was getting knocked around by the waves. Not quite the relaxing dip I was hoping for so I hopped out and took a few snaps instead.

You will take the east side and I will take the west. (We had everything for a little while.)

Maddy in the spring time

We found a rundown old race course on the way back from the TarraWarra Museum of Art | Chloe, BC and Michael in Melbourne

Cape Town, South Africa

Our Sunshine (Summer Longing) | I can't conjure up the sensation of sweat on my skin as a warm breeze blows. I don't recall those still nights. When did cool water provide any relief at all?

House & Farm

This is South Africa - Part Two
In the heat of the day the dusty streets of Jouberton are deserted but once the sun starts to sink they fill with families, men on their way home from work, quarreling kids, grandmas in green and the occasional chicken. Cooking ingredients are exchanged and meal offers are made but no one goes home until well after dark. There’s nowhere else to be and it’s clear that nothing’s more important than sitting by the side of the road chatting with your neighbour while your children play nearby.

18 year old Mpho lives with her grandmother, mother, little brother, aunties and cousins plus two month old Lethabo in a three bedroom home. “Family and friends come to stay all the time,” she says. “It’s hard to get a bath around here – unless you’re Lethabo.”

She completed her matric (year 12 exams) last year at a boarding school a few hours away but has now moved home again. She plans to go to college next year and wants to be a nurse. We spend the days walking around her neighbourhood (“Everyone is staring at you,” she said. “But don’t worry, I’ll be your bodyguard.”) and hanging out with her best friend, Lebogang, singing along to songs on the music channel and sitting by the side of the road eating ice blocks to stay cool. Lebogang and Mpho grew up together in Jouberton. He’ll finish high school at the end of the year and then plans to move to Cape Town to study law. They both love music and have incredible singing voices. “Do you like Sia? What about Ellie Goulding? And London Grammar? Yes? Ahhh we’re the same!” said an excited Mpho.

As soon as school finishes, Mpho goes from house to house, visiting her friends. They sit outside listening to music on their phones, eating peaches and pomegranates from the trees or chips and ice blocks bought for less that 10 cents from one of the many ‘tuck shops’. One day I offered Mpho some of my dried fruit/nut/seed mix. She wasn’t keen. “Ew, no thanks!” Later she offered me some of her chicken feet (aka ‘runaways’). You can probably guess my response.

Mpho always wears a hat and long pants or sleeves – even on 40 degree c days like today – because she says she doesn’t want her skin to get any darker. “I’m black on the outside but white on the inside,” she told me.

Photographing Mpho was just one of those wonderful, unexpected encounters that ended up being better than anything I could have imagined or planned. Being the only white person in the community felt uncomfortable and strange but I think it was important to experience that. At times it was confronting and challenging but for the most part it was just plain fun. Mpho and I really connected and she felt like a real friend.

All photos shot with a Leica M6 and Kodak Portra film. Developed and scanned at Richard Photo Lab.

'Small Town Girl - Australia, South Africa and the USA' opens at Gaffa Gallery (Sydney CBD) between 6-8pm on May 14 2015 as part of the Head On Photo Festival. I'd love to see you there!