Welcome to Life Images by Jill

Welcome to Life Images by Jill.........Through my writing and photography I seek to preserve images and memories of the beautiful world in which we live and the people in it.

I am a Freelance Journalist and Photographer based in Bunbury, Western Australia. My published work specialises in Western Australian travel articles and stories about inspiring everyday people. I have a day job, but my passion is photography, writing, travel, wildflower and food photography. For now my day job supports me until I can pursue my passions full time.

I hope you enjoy scrolling through my blog. To visit other pages, please click on the tabs above, or go to my Blog Archive on the side bar. Please feel free to leave a comment at the bottom of any of my posts. I value your messages and look forward to hearing from you.

If you like my work, and would like to buy a print, or commission me for some work, please go to my "contact me" tab. Thank you for visiting my blog and helping me "step into the light".

Welcome!

Welcome!

Tuesday, 3 March 2015

Sol-y-Sombra and Flamenco at the Multi-Culutral Festival Bunbury

This last weekend in Western Australia we have had a Labour Day long weekend - 28 February to 2 March.

One of the events over the weekend where I live was the Multi-Cultural Festival held on Saturday evening. This is a family based free event showcasing cultural dances from around the world representing the fabulous mix of cultures who live in our region. There was also a fusion of wonderful international tastes sold at the various food stalls around the event.

I am involved with the Sol-y-Sombra Spanish Dance Company and School of Dance. This year they danced the "Fire Dance" at the festival.  Below is my favourite image from the night. This is our teacher Nicole. Don't you just love the swirl of those "fire" shawls?


As I am relatively new to the group I am still learning this dance, so I wasn't involved in the production, but took photos from the sidelines - much more relaxing for me!

I enjoyed trying to capture the swirl of those skirts and shawls.

I had to fiddle around with the settings on my camera because of the low light, and I didn't want to use flash. I was happy with the results. These are all straight out of camera. I am yet to do any post production "fiddling". That will have to wait till I get my computer back. My lap top just doesn't cut it.

The make-up and hair for the performance were expertly done by Susie from our group.





Below is a pic of my daughter-in-law. She has been dancing Flamenco for about 10 years.
It was so lovely that she was happy to have her mother-in-law join the class a couple of years ago. It is something creative we can enjoy together.


Sol y Sombra is this year celebrating 25 years. They are planning a big production in September to celebrate. Lots of practicing and learning between now and then, especially for me!

I hope you have enjoyed these few images. This is just a short post today as I am still waiting for my computer to come back. I hope everything will be returned to normal next week and I'll be back with more images from the Multi-Culutral Festival.

In the meantime, thank you for stopping by.
Have a lovely week.

You can see more pics from Sol y Sombra by going to their Facebook page.  Perhaps you could "like" us!! Please go to the link -
Sol-y-Sombra-Spanish-Dance-Company


You might also like
Weekends of art and dance
Sol-y-Sombra Spanish Dance Company 
Spanish dancing
Flamenco


Thank you so much for stopping by. I value your comments and look forward to hearing from you. I will try to visit your blogs in return.

I am linking up to Mosaic Monday, Our World Tuesday, Wednesday Around the World, What's It Wednesday and Travel Photo Thursday.  Please click on the links to see fabulous contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best!

Mosaic Monday
Our World Tuesday
Wednesday Around the World at Communal Global
What's It Wednesday
Travel Photo Thursday

Wednesday, 25 February 2015

A forest of sunflowers

Today I have some creative writing for you - a writing group exercise this week.
My grandmother did have a huge vegetable garden, and there was a man that lived over the lane we used to visit, but I don't remember his name, and I don't remember any sunflowers, so this story is partly true and partly fictional.

A Forest of Sunflowers

There is a forest of sunflowers at the bottom of my grandmother’s garden, up against the back picket fence between the chook pen and the outhouse under the weeping trees.

The sunflowers are so tall that when we stand amongst them we can only just see over the top. We crouch down on the dusty dry red dirt amongst their stiff scratchy stalks. The sunflower heads are so big they form a canopy shading us from the hot sun and casting a yellow glow over us. Sometimes we take a book with us and read it sitting amongst the sunflowers. It’s our secret world where anything is possible.  As we doze in the sun the world of the Faraway Tree comes to life under the sunflowers.

Please click on "read more" to keep reading!

Thursday, 12 February 2015

Playing around with food and light

It's been a little while since I posted about food photography, so today is the day!                                                          If you are a newbie food photographer with only basic equipment you might struggle with light. I know I did. I                                                            You should study the light around your home as you will probably find that the light changes around your house throughout the day. My patio is great in the mornings, and my kitchen window is great around midday or later on if I am looking for backlighting.
 
Please click on "read more" to read more!

Monday, 9 February 2015

Busselton Jetty swim 2015

What does one do on a beautiful summer's Sunday morning in Busselton? Swim 3.6 kilometres around the Busselton Jetty with 2000 other people? Of course! but did I? No not me! I stood on the jetty and watched - I wouldn't want to get my camera wet would I?

But seriously this is what 2000 competitors, male and female, ranging from their teens to their eighties did on Sunday morning 8 February. It was the twentieth time the Around the Busselton Jetty swimming race had been held. Each year the race grows in numbers of competitors.
 
Please click on "read more" to read more!

Sunday, 1 February 2015

A new photo project for 2015

So we are already a month into 2015! How are you all going with your New Year Resolutions? I must admit I don't make any. But I do start to make a few plans, and there are a few big plans waiting in the wings for me for 2015, but resolutions? no.

I can hardly believe I am saying this, but I have embarked on a new photographic project for 2015.  Those that follow me on my blog probably know about my 365 Project in 2014 - one photo a day every day for a year. It was a challenge - a huge challenge at times. When I reached the end of the 2014 and the successful completion of the 365 project I said thank goodness for that, it is over.  But do you know what? I couldn't stop taking photos every day just in case I decided to do a fool thing and do another 365 project! And then fate stepped in. A week or so ago I woke up about 12.15 midnight, and realised that I hadn't taken a photo the previous day.  The first I had missed in over 380 days. Now I could have gotten up out of bed and taken a photo, but no, the day was past. It was a relief really. 

Please click on "read more" to read more!

Sunday, 25 January 2015

Australia Day - 26 January - on the beach

26 January is Australia Day and the day we celebrate everything Australian, our history, the future, way of life, mateship and cultural diversity. 

I'd love you to waltzing matilda over to my post from last year to look at a more humouress look at what Australianism is - Celebrating Australia and Waltzing Matilda

Why do we celebrate Australia Day on 26 January?  This is the day in 1788 that Captain Arthur Phillip landed in Sydney Cove with the First Fleet (eleven convict ships) from Great Britain. They raised the Union Jack to symbolise British occupation of the eastern half of the continent claimed by Captain James Cook on 22 August in 1770. We should also remember on this day that Australia's first inhabitants, the traditional indigenous owners, have a slightly different view of this event. You can learn more by clicking here - Australia Day History 

Please click on "read more" to read more!

Sunday, 18 January 2015

Bunbury street art on a Sunday morning, Western Australia




So what does one do in Bunbury on a Sunday morning?

  • Go to the beach
  • Take a walk
  • Have breakfast in a cafe
  • View the street art
  • Go to the art gallery

Or as we did on this last Sunday all of the above!




Please click on "read more" to read more!

Tuesday, 13 January 2015

St Werburgh's Chapel, Mt Barker, Western Australia

Years ago we visited St Weburgh's Chapel not far out of Mt Barker and north of Albany on Western Australia's south coast.
I wanted to visit again, and this last weekend we took a side trip to Mt Barker and St Werburgh's on our way to Denmark.

St Werburgh's Chapel is nestled in a small grove of trees on a hill surrounded by farming land and overlooking Hay River. It is one of the few church buildings in Western Australia which have been built by a landowner on their own estate.  

Dedicated to Saint Werburgh (English Abbess 7th century AD) the chapel was built from clay pug and completed in 1873.

Please click on "read more" to read more!

Sunday, 4 January 2015

And that's a wrap - 2014 and my 365 Project

And so 2014 is at an end. What a year it has been. When I started my 365 project back on 1 January 2014 I could not have imagined where the year would take me. It has been interesting to look back over my year in pictures. At times the project has been challenging and I didn't think I would be able to maintain taking at least one photo every day, but I have and it has been immensely enjoyable and very rewarding. During times when life has been a little tough, my camera has been my solace, and a welcome distraction. 

To read more please click on "read more"

Sunday, 21 December 2014

A little bit of Christmas baking

It's nearly Christmas. Do you go all out and do a lot of Christmas baking? Or only a little?

In truth Christmas in the Australian summer is not the best time for baking, so I usually target a cooler day to cook.





Looking for a simple Christmas cookie recipe? Try these Ginger Stars.


To find the recipe, please click on "read more" to read more!

Monday, 15 December 2014

The Ghosts of Christmas Past


And so it is only just over a week and a bit to Christmas. Our last "homework" for our writer's group was to write a memory from Christmas.  And this is what came to me..... I thought I would share it with you.

Christmas comes but once a year
It brings with it joys and tears

As I go through the motions of gift buying, decorations and planning menus..... 
 
Please click on "read more" to read "The Ghosts Of Christmas Past" ....

Monday, 8 December 2014

Belonging and choosing happiness

Sol-y-Sombra Spanish Dance Company
It's December and things are winding down towards the end of year and Christmas, or is it winding up as we plan our Christmas festivities?

For us in Australia at least, this time of year brings with it the end of the school year, summer holidays and the closing of groups we belong to for the year. I belong to three groups: a writing group (once a month), photography group (once a month) and a dance group (once a week). I will miss these people, my friends through shared interests, over the break till we meet again in January or February next year. 

To read more please click on "read more" !

Monday, 1 December 2014

A walk through Ambergate Reserve, Busselton, Western Australia

pea flower growing over grass tree
In late October we visited with new friends who we had met at Mt Augustus in the Pilbara during our July tripThey only live about 45 minutes south of us. 

I had been wanting to visited Ambergate Reserve at Busselton and they were happy to come along for the bush walk. It was spring time and the area was ablaze with wildflowers along the four kilometre bush trail. I wonder if they realised what they were putting themselves in for  - it was spring, the wildflowers were fantastic,and I had my camera with me!

Only 9km from Busselton, Ambergate Reserve is a 75 hectare remnant of the southern Swan coastal plain woodland, much of which is now cleared.  The Reserve contains a wide variety of vegetation types and includes both natural and artificial wetland area.
 
To read more please click on "read more"!

Monday, 24 November 2014

Hello sunshine yellow and lemony delights

Yellow is such a happy colour don't you think?  I love it when the yellow daisies start to flower in my front garden.


 To me yellow is also the colour that says summer. In Australia spring is on the wane and summer is moving in. My front garden is starting to put on its brilliant summer display -  red Coral Bush, purple/blue Agapanthus, yellow daisies, green kangaroo paws, pink hydrangers, roses, and sprawling nasturtiums. Someone called Agapanthus "Aggie's Pants" the other day - I love that.

To read more please click on "read more"!

Monday, 17 November 2014

Walking down memory lane

This is not what I was originally going to blog about today. But it was my birthday on Saturday and my sister sent me the most amazing gift, hand made by her. She makes beautiful greeting cards - they are works of art. Her gift came in a hand made and decorated box, a piece of art itself. Inside was the most beautiful book, which folded out as it opened, with pages decorated around photos of us as children, and adults with our Mum and Dad.  I will treasure this very special gift.

Can you see the message: "Time has a wonderful way of showing us what really matters".

To read more please click on "read more"

Sunday, 9 November 2014

Cook it, plate it, take a photo, and pack it for a picnic

Prawns in Penang
It has been a little while since I have done much food photography as life seems to have gotten in the way over the last few months.  Any food photography was at best just a snapshot before I ate it! 
This is a pic of a delicious food-hall dish we ate in Penang in October.


So last Monday, my day off work, I rectified this and had a day in the kichen cooking and taking pics.  I have just bought a long cable so I can attach my camera to my laptop while I am shooting. This is called "tethered" shooting. You work through "Lightroom".

To read more please click on "read more"

Monday, 3 November 2014

Continuing my Project 365

Hi everyone! Welcome back.  I am now into the last two months of my Project 365! I can hardly believe that the end is in sight and that I have managed throughout everything that has happened this year to keep going faithfully taking a photo every day. It is a habit now, though sometimes it is a quickly snapped shot at the end of the day.


 
To read more please click on "read more"!

Sunday, 26 October 2014

Exploring the Kennedy Ranges, Western Australia

Hi everyone, as promised I am back with my Pilbara trip account. This time from the Kennedy Ranges in the southern Pilbara region of Western Australia.

Last post you may remember we camped at Mount Augustus. If you missed it, you can catch up here - Mount Augustus walk trails

We left Mount Augustus just before 9am in the morning. It was another beautiful blue sky day. We had about 260 kilometres to cover over gravel roads to get to the Kennedy Ranges, although we found the road was in pretty food condition, varying between sandy flood plain country to rocky through the mountains - watch out for the sharp dips, and drive to the conditions.


To read more please click on "read more" and continue on our trip to the Kennedy Ranges

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Penang travel tips for first timer

I don’t profess to be a Penang travel authority. Far from it.

The last time we visited was in 1995. We were there as part of a Western Australian team competing at the Penang International Dragon Boat Festival along Gurney Drive.  We didn’t do a lot of touristy things, mainly went for long sweaty runs along the roads and beaches, and paddled madly at the regatta, although we did have a few days after the regatta finished to have a look around.

Please click on "read more" to keeping reading!


Monday, 13 October 2014

Penang in bloom

We have just returned from a lovely week of R&R in Penang. After the emotions of the last couple of months the timing couldn't have been better for us. We must have known something when we booked in February!

I have always loved tropical gardens and the gardens of the Park Royal Hotel where we stayed were amazing. 
 Our first view - welcome -


I could easily have just laid by the pool and done very little. Nice? Wouldn't you just love to have just a little bit of this garden at home?








Please click on read more to read & see more!

Sunday, 5 October 2014

Mount Augustus walk trails, Pilbara, Western Australia

Have you ever been to Mount Augustus in Western Australia’s Pilbara region?  We hadn’t before this last July. I wondered why we had never been there before! If you missed my first blog post about it you can catch up by clicking here – Wildflowers that bloom in the red rock of Mt Augustus

Mount Augustus, or Burringurrah, as it is known by the local Wajarri indigenous people, is the largest rock in the world. 430 kilometres from Carnarvon via Gascoyne Junction or 360 kilometres from Meekatharra, via gravel roads either way, it is easy to explore Mount Augustus from the Mount Augustus Outback Tourist Park, located only a short drive from Mt Augustus National Park. If you stay a few days you can enjoy the numerous walk trails through Mt Augustus.

Please click on "read more" to keeping reading and seeing more!

Monday, 29 September 2014

Flowers that bloom in the red rock of Mount Augustus, Western Australia

Regular readers of my blog will know that life has changed for me over the last couple of months in a way that was totally unexpected, and my blogging has been a little erratic.

In July we set off on a camping holiday into the Pilbara region of Western Australia. If you missed the last post back in August you can catch up by clicking here - Pilbara-camping-part-3

For those of you who have been waiting patiently out there in blogland for me to continue writing about our trip, thank you so much for being patient. As promised I'm back!

Please click on read more to keeping reading and seeing more!

Monday, 22 September 2014

Welcoming new beginnings



It has been an emotional six weeks. A time of great change with the passing of my darling father. I never imagined that this is where we would be when we went off travelling and exploring through the Pilbara in early July.  I keep going back over the last few weeks and trying to fathom how we got from there to here. I have felt that someone else has been in control of my life...it certainly wasn't me.  As John Lennon wisely said....."life is what happens while you are making other plans".

During this time my camera has been my solace and I have kept up my 365 Project as I work my way through what life has thrown my way.  Amazingly those wintery images are around the time of my Dad's passing.

Please click on "read more" to keeping reading and seeing more!

Sunday, 31 August 2014

Life in pictures - June-July-August

 I would have never imagined at the beginning of June how life has changed in only a few months. It certainly has had highs and lows. As my 365 Project reflects - one photo a day every day.  The project has sometimes been a challenge to take a photo every day.

Sometimes it is easy, sometimes my shots are planned, but often they are just a quick snapshot or a random shot on my way home from work!  But my friend has just wisely said to me -
Random shots of a moment in your life where every minute is as special as any other - nothing wrong with that!

Please click on read more to keep reading and seeing more!

Monday, 18 August 2014

Blooming Art 2014 - Bunbury Regional Art Gallery, Western Australia

I was thrilled recently to be invited to be a Blooming Art Special Guest exhibitor at the floral art exhibition run annually by the Flower Designers Club of Bunbury in the beautiful Chapel Gallery at the Bunbury Regional Art Gallery.   I was invited by Blooming Art Coordinator, Eileen Wenn, who is a friend of mine from Spanish dance class, and who is also a world class floral art designer.

Special invited guest exhibitors select a painting from the City of Bunbury Art Collection, and then represent it through a floral display.  I have no floral art background or formal arts training, so felt very priviledged to be invited, as well as a little apprehensive and excited. 

The painting I chose which you can see below, is a painting by Alisa Small, called Up The Gorge to Tallering Peak.  I was attracted to this painting because we had just past through this area on our way south from the Pilbara.  I love the rich colours, textures and ruggedness of this ancient landscape and how the colours change with the light. Alisa has captured with her painting what I try to capture with my camera. 

 To keep reading and see more pics, please click on "read more" .....

Sunday, 10 August 2014

Pilbara camping - Part 3 - Western Australia

Hi everyone, I hope you have enjoyed my last two posts about camping in Karijini National Park in Western Australia's Pilbara region. If you ever come to Western Australia, and have time, you should visit, particularly if you are here around July-August.
If you missed the posts you can catch up here -  Karijini Camping - Part 1
 and here - Karijini camping - Part 2


Today we are back on the road again, heading out of Karijini and heading towards Mount Augustus - the world's largest monocline.
But first the town of Tom Price - 108km from the Karijini's Dales Gorge campground.
We need to fuel up and buy some fresh supplies for the next leg of our trip, plus a quick email catch up and mail some post cards.

Situated on the edge of the Hamersley Ranges, Tom Price is Western Australia's highest town, 747metres above sea level. Tom Price's economy is dependent on the iron ore industry. The area was only appraised for mining in the early 1960's, so Tom Price is a very young town.  

 To keep reading and see more pics, please click on "read more" .....