Tree rock mud fog tram bird car rain

When I was asked to contribute some work to this show, I dredged up the negatives I shot during lockdown. They were filthy, scratched and shamefully stored in my wardrobe under my shoes. At the time I was taking these images I didn’t have much intention of ever looking at them again. When covid really descended on Australia I was working as a freelance photographer. I remember the moment that the whispers and rumours of what might be coming finally crystalised and turned up at my doorstep. All of the upcoming jobs I had booked, including one I was already on location for, were canceled in the space of three days.

I decided the only way I wasn’t going to fall into a dark well, whilst essentially unemployed, was to get up at 7.30am every day and use my hour of exercise time to walk around my 5km radius. Sometimes I took my camera with me andsometimes didn’t. I can’t explain how much at the time I thought taking any photographs during this time was pointless. My mind was trimmed and compacted down to the smallest functioning version of itself in lockdown, like I was a phone operating on low battery mode. Essential functions only. The days in lockdown are blurred in my memory and the things I saw on my daily walks followed the same repeated patterns. The same images and sights I passed day and day over, like watching the same movie on repeat again and again.

The images are explicitly representative of my physical surroundings, and the small restrictive area that encompassed, but in hindsight I can see how they encapsulate my psychological space as well. They are foggy, blurry, focussed on small details, and underexposed because I was using expired film. I didn’t want to waste fresh film taking images that were - according to my quietened brain - going nowhere. When I look back on the images now I see their worth, not necessarily in the outcome but in the way that the process of taking photographs, like it has through most of my life, gave me something to keep searching for.