Last Saturday a couple of rep teams from Binar played a game against members from a local Church of Jesus Christ of Latter day saints congregation in what hopes to become an annual fixture in the calendar. A few of the Greenmount saints team dusted off the boots from their playing days to tackle these young slick stars of the future. There were 2 main games played with Binar winning the 1st game. The main game was a pulsating clash with several lead changes and great intensity played right through until the end. Binar lead by 3 with 11 seconds to go in the game, when the Congregational leader Bishop Armitage dropped a huge 3 pointer to tie the game up. Some desperate defence then stopped the Binar boys from making a last second winning basket. The spectacle played in front of a huge crowd seemed too good to settle as a tie, and so it was decided that 3 minutes overtime woud be played. The Young Binar boys lifted the intensity at both ends of the court and even though baskets were traded at both ends, the young men were able to come up with some solid stops and control the ball with composure to win by 2 points. A great effort by all who participated and helped organise and run this fantastic event. The main game was followed by some round robin competitions, a kids game and BBQ. Bishop Armitage praised the young team on their high quality skills and excellent level of sportsmanship. He said ” Its great to see the next generation of young leaders from our community rising to the challenges on and off the basketball court. We will continue to support and encourage these boys to make a difference in our community in all that they do…….It would appear we also need to sharpen our skills up before the next match against them.” A further match will be scheduled possibly later in the year when the boys have completed SBL and WABL commitments. More pics and other results to follow.
Australia day this year was spent with some friends on their lifestyle property in the Swan Valley. Its not just a beautiful place but also a fun place to hang out. It also happens to be right next door to another horse property owner who had me do some family lifestyle portraits for them a few years back. That particular photo shoot was quite fun and included some portraits of the kids doing jumps on their horses, playing on their tree rope and mucking around with their dogs.
Today was a bit of fun for everyone. We had a wonderful BBQ even with some Kangaroo cooked up and then the play fun began. Of course I had to get the Drone out and film some footage of the things we got up to. The kids and everyone else who did not have a popped eardrum (From my dive off the diving board at Bilgoman) splashed around in the pool to cool off from the 36 degree heat, while some of the adventurous prepared the horses and began riding. And of course boys will be boys and the Quad also got launched with some seriously flicks of gravel. Of course it wasn’t just the boys. The ladies and the kids showed plenty of spirit when flying around the paddock too. All in all it was a wonderful day and we even got a last dessert treat to finish it all off (YUMMO). I love the Australia day lifestyle. I love living in a safe and well off country. I love the old cultures and I love the new cultures becoming part of Australian culture. I’m glad that I could spend an Australia day with a bunch of friends from all different cultural backgrounds and have a lot of fun. And get some nice photographs of us doing so.
So as the School holidays come to an end and I reflect on the wonderful memories that we have created. I just don’t want it to end… I must love the school holidays more than the kids. That must mean I am still a kids at heart ( and in mind). But I really have loved doing lots of different things with these 3 little gems and these gems mother. I have snapped off many photographs from our adventures and have so many stories to tell, yet the time just slips away so fast and I barely get to post any of my family photographs. While doing a family portrait last week, and talking with this particular family about all the fun adventures they were having over their holiday break, I challenged myself to start by posting some of my family photographic treasures and then follow up with some stories. After all being a professional photographer does put in me in the best seat in the house to take beautiful portraits of my own children. Well here is three little gems of mine, just being themselves. Hopefully you can see the inner happiness and the joy they have spending time together as a family. Hope these holidays never end!!!!
Don’t you just love Christmas. Its a great time to be together with family and share some good fun and create some wonderful memories. Of course there is a greater meaning and spirit to Christmas day, and as a family we take a little bit of time away from opening presents and filling up on food and goodies.
In our family we take a bit of time to go through the Christmas story and reflect on our feelings before we begin seeing what Santa has placed under the Christmas tree. Of course it is a joy to watch our children, with excitement opening their presents, and it such a blessing to see them interact and play with their Cousins, Aunties and Uncles and Grandparents.
Christmas day goes by in such flash and it then the 365 day cycle builds up again. I hope we take more than one day to enjoy our family and reflect on the true meaning of Christmas. Here is a few photographs from our Christmas day celebrations including the annual rushed Desmond family portrait.
Its about that time of year that I take a well deserved break. Well I think I deserve the break anyway. Not only has a massive Photography season been completed for the year, there has been all the windups from the kids school and of course the Christmas season has been upon us.
This year between Christmas and New Years my immediate family and their children congregated together in the South West for a magical week of camping in Siesta Park halfway between Busselton and Dunsborough. And I do mean magical. The weather and company was fabulous and we couldn’t have asked for a better week away. It probably all didn’t go to plan, however we all made a go of it and enjoyed the the summer rays, the cool nights, the sparkling crystal water and some pretty sensation cuisine.
Here is the first glimpse from our big holiday together. Can’t wait for next years camp.
My Birthday girl reminds me that families are forever.
I heard some tragic news late last night after I had finished judging a camera club competition. The baby of a friend and previous wedding client had passed away after a very short life. I send my warmest regards to the grieving mother and she sent back to me a beautiful and insightful message. She encouraged me to ‘hold my babies tight” and showed amazing bravery in talking about the peace she would have with her the rest of her life from the small moments her son had been with her.
A parents special role
It made me ponder the special and beautiful role I have as a parent to 3 amazing children, and the sacred responsibility I have in raising them and seeing them become an asset to their owns families in years to come and the community they live in.
Eager to enter the world.
Today is a very special girls birthday. Yes, today is my only daughters 8th Birthday and it has been a long way coming. I think she has been 8 for about 5 or 6 years now. I vividly remember the day she was born, especially because this young lady was in a hurry from the outset. We raced to the hospital and barely had time to get the camera out let alone park the car. In the panic I drove into the wrong hospital and eventually parked in a doctors reserved car park. 15 minutes later we were blessed with our second beautiful child.
Since then it has been a roller coaster ride and a half, with many wonderful and amazing memories. This young princess of ours is hilarious. She has an amazing personality and is fun and adventurous.
Her own comedy show.
Many times she has brought us to tear from laughing so hard. I love her extroverted approach on life. Times like while travelling in Kununurra and staying at a caravan park and I would take all the kids into the toilets to have showers before our day’s activities. Kembry would run up to one of the used cubicles, look underneath and start a conversation with the very embarrassed person using the toilet.
Protective Mother Hen.
She is also very kind and always thinking of everyone especially her brothers. She is a protective mother hen of her little brother, carrying him like he is her own son. And we love the playful games and activities she plays with her handsome older brother. I just love the way they cackle and laugh together so much. It has been a pleasure to travel with them on family and work trips.
So many beautiful memories and even some challenges ( I’m sure when she is a teenager there will be some more too). But today I just want to take some time out to remember my birthday girl and how wonderful families are.
The good in closing remote communities?
What good is there in the West Australian government closing remote communities? Absolutely none!! Closing remote communities is wrong.
What I have come to believe, through my experiences, as a professional travel photographer is that culture is important and difference is ok. My journey through remote communities in outback Australia is no exception.
Photography in remote communities
I’ve got to admit, I have witnessed some wonderful things. I love photography, and I love documenting events and occasions. My lens and camera sensor are the tools that allow me to document and illustrate people’s life stories.
For the most part my camera is used to photograph couples getting married or families having portraits taken for their family history. But often I find myself telling the story of everyday people and their every day life.
Protesting the foreclosure
In light of this week’s protests against the foreclosure of remote communities, I have decided to share a series of experiences that have led me to personally believe that this is a terrible mistake.
I want to share more of my stories and experiences from my time living in remote communities. I was fortunate enough to document with my camera the lifestyles of these amazing people and this amazing culture that we are still privileged to see living here in Australia.
The photographs I was able to produce from this exploration were exhibited as a body of work at the Australian Professional Photography awards. The reception for the exhibited portfolio was overwhelming. The series of images and photographs were judged and awarded national runner-up photographic album of the year.
Living off the land
For 9 weeks we lived in one of these remote communities in Arnhem Land Northern Territory, which is very similar to the remote communities being closed in Western Australia . Ramingining is about 8 hours from Darwin.
This was a rich and memorable experience for our family, one that we will treasure for many years to come. For me personally it was exposure to the oldest living culture.
My family and I arrived in this remote community with many life experiences. We had previously travelled to countries all over the world and had spent 7 months exploring outback Australia, living in our camper trailer.
Nothing could prepare us for the once in a lifetime experience of living with Yolngu people in East Arnhem Land.
Although we came as complete strangers to this community we were warmly welcomed. The first thing we noticed is that things were different. Remote communities operate completely differently from the mainstream living conditions we had ever lived in or visited.
Was this a bad thing? NO, certainly not! And yes, there were things that we were not prepared for at all.
My personal curiosity really set in and I became determined to discover more about this land and the people that dwelt here. One of the first things we noticed is that our languages were different. However, rather than me making efforts to communicate in their language while in their land, the people graciously made efforts to speak to me in English.
From this point on I made an effort to try to learn some of the basics of their language, and I wanted to experience living the way they did. Of course, I know I wouldn’t be able to fully accomplish this during my short stay, but I wanted to make an authentic and genuine effort towards it.
The more effort I made, the more receptive the people became to me. They were already so happy, friendly and kind, but now they viewed this as an effort to educate me on their culture and their way of living.
Nothing wasted, Nothing taken for granted.
Within the first few days I gained an appreciation for their culture and lifestyle. Here, I discovered a community that were truly grateful for every breath of life they had. Nothing was taken for granted.
Just like my city suburban community, there were problems, some similar and some different. But what was completely different was the people of these remote communities live for life, they all contributed in some way to their family, people and community. They were resourceful and showed gratitude. Gratitude for their land, for their food and for life in general.
Another stolen generation
Why is this radical step being taken in this day and age and with all these years of disastrous failed policies as evidence? What good do we think we are doing for these people in the remote communities? What other problems are we going to open ourselves up for in the future when hindsight proves these policies to be a failure again?
After all, isn’t it owed to the people of these remote communities that they can abide in their original lands according to their tradition, as their forefathers have?
If we refuse to call it an invasion over 200 years ago, what do we call this now?
One thing is for sure, I know that the people making these decisions have never set foot in these remote communities personally. And if they have, their eyes were blindfolded so they have yet to experience the rich and rewarding experience that can await them. No one who has experienced this would ever dream of closing these communities down.
Basketball is a tough sport, and I’m glad to be involved in coaching and developing kids sport. Today I coached my son and his friends school basketball team in a big tournament.
It was nice to take off my professional photographer hat and work with some wonderful young sporting talents. The final of this basketball tournament was played with 3 of our Binar Sports kids representing their schools in a tough and epic battle. (4 Binar sports kids in the Championship grade won their team MVP awards
In the earlier games between these team mates two tight draws had been completed. It all came down to the Grand final and in front of a monsterous crowd these kids put on a epic show.
By full time the scores were again drawn and so the match went into overtime. With the pressure on and with barely anytime to go on the game clock and with scores still level, a sickening and accidental head clash between two rival players (who are friends and team mates outside of school) took place.
The result was a couple of sore heads and for one player a quick trip to the hospital. I’m sure their friendship will always stay the same, and what a great show of sportsmanship form all players, coaches, staff and students involved
The incident came at a critical time with this young key player (My son) having to drop out of the action while his team mates narrowly lost in overtime.
In the end everyone is ok and after a couple of days swelling and a couple of black eyes, this little champion should be back in the thick of things.
Children’s parties are certainly very special. One of the wonderful parts of children’s lives is the joy of attending their friends Birthday parties. On a warm sunny afternoon, our kids were involved in 3 parties. One of the children’s parties I was lucky enough to take out my camera and take some photographs. Yes even when I am not taking my camera out as a professional photographer I still get it out as photographer Dad. Luckily it was our day off and we had some energy to race in between the 3 parties.