Welcome to Life Images by Jill

Welcome to Life Images by Jill.........Stepping into the light and bringing together the images and stories of our world. I am a photographer, writer and multi-media artist.
Focussing mainly on Western Australia and Australia, I am seeking to preserve images and memories of the beautiful world in which we live and the people in it.



Monday 13 May 2024

Autumn in the Golden Valley Tree Park in Balingup, & the Aurora Australis - Western Australia

 Hi everyone. I hope you and yours are doing well. We have had more rain yesterday - yay! 

As promised last week, today I bring you some more pics from our annual visit to the Golden Valley Tree Park in Balingup, Western Australia. I know for those of you in the northern hemisphere, the autumn leaf fall is a common yearly occurrence for you. Not so in Australia, where our trees hold onto their leaves. So to have a place like the Golden Valley Tree Park to visit is fabulous for us. 

We have been making an annual visit the tree park for a number of years. The park is about an hours travel from our place, depending if we stop somewhere on the way. You go through the town of Ballingup before you get to the tree park, so that is a great place to grab a coffee and cake, and often on the way home we stop at Donnybrook to buy some fruit - they are in the middle of the orchard region. We usually take a picnic, and have morning tea when we get there, then do one of the loop trails, come back to the car and have our picnic lunch, then do the other loop trail before heading home. 

We have been in drought since October, and it was sad to see how dry the paddocks at the tree park were. You can see a comparison below - I know we were a few days early this year - but we hadn't had any rain either. 

I've brought you images from the Golden Valley Tree Park before. 

The Golden Valley Tree Park is a sixty hectare landscaped park set in the picturesque hills of Balingup. The heritage listed site has a collection of international trees that was begun over one hundred years ago, and is now the largest arboretum in Western Australia. The land was bought by the Government in the late 1970s and  park was established around 1980. 

We were a little early this year - but there was enough colour to satisfy me - and it was a lovely day for a walk and a picnic.

This is a persimmon tree 

And an avenue of Chinese pistachios that were looking a little sad this year

my new favourite - Zelkova serrata from Japan

The tree park is 1.5 kilometres south of Balingup, or you can walk to it from Balingup via an easy 2 kilometre walk along the part of the 1000 kilometre Bibbulmun Track, which passes through the park. Please shut the gates as sheep graze on the property. 

To learn more about the Golden Valley tree park you can go to their web page

or some of my previous posts - 

Autumn season of change - 2016

Autumn in the Golden Valley tree park - 2017

Autumn colour in Western Australia - 2019

Autumn in Western Australia - 2021

Balingup Golden Valley Tree Park - 2022

The area that comprises the park was first settled in 1898 by Frank and Margaret Cleverland.  Their home was built of bricks made from clay dug from nearby Yungerup Spring. The original 20 plantings of exotic species by Olwyn Cleverland during 1930-1940's has grown to an impressive world collection of over 500 species, represented by over 3000 individual specimens. The Park, which is heritage listed, is maintained by volunteers and sponsorship. From its first plantings over 100 years ago the the Golden Valley Tree Park is now the largest arboretum in Western Australia.

Nuts on the Oriental Plane tree - 

There are places to walk, places to sit, and places to picnic - the Balingup Golden Valley Tree Park is a treasure of the south west of Western Australia
Forgive me - these 2 photos are from a previous greener year....
The other unexpected thing we experienced this week was the Aurora Australis - ie the southern lights as opposed to the northern lights. We had never seen it before. Due to huge sun activity the aurora effect could be seen about half way up the Australian continent. We couldn't see it with the naked eye where we were, other than a faint glow, but I was able to capture some images with my camera. Though not sharp, I thought I would share them with you. the top image here was taken over the ocean, and the other one in our Ferguson Valley region about 20 minutes from home. There was a lot of excitement from everyone about this event and lots of people out taking photos. I've seen some amazing ones on the net. 

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. Have a wonderful week. 
I am linking up to the link-ups below. Please click on the links to see fabulous contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best!

Tuesday 7 May 2024

April-May randoms

Hi everyone, I hope all is well with you. The week is getting away from me and it is only Tuesday. So just a quick update and I will be back next week. 

Last week we made our annual visit to the Balingup Golden Valley Tree Park to see the autumn colour - a little early this year, just starting, and so sad to see it so dry, but still enjoyable.  More photos next week. 

Finally it rained late last week - the first rain since we have had since October. Hopefully this link will work :) 

We have had a bumper crop of quinces on our tree this year. On Monday I made quince and grape jam. And of slices of quince

And of course because it was Anzac Day on 25th April, I made Anzac biscuits - an Australian classic - albeit a few days late. 

Did you know you can catch up on latest published magazine articles by going to Published Work in the tabs bar?

And my latest news is that a few months ago I was contacted by Pandora Archive through the WA State Library to have my blog digitised and kept on record at The National Library of Australia through Trove. 
There is a selection process. My blog was selected as it was about Western Australia and written by a Western Australian author. And it was on a subject of social, political, cultural, religious, scientific or economic significance and relevance to Western Australia. 
What an honour to be selected.

You can search Trove here: Trove - National Library of Australia
Then write Life Images by Jill in the seach box and click on Websites over on the right hand side. 
Click on my title when it comes up. Then click on View the Live Webpage in the green box on the right hand side - to bring up the latest updates. 

That's it from me for today. I will be back next week with more photos from Balingup.

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. Have a wonderful week. 
I am linking up to the link-ups below. Please click on the links to see fabulous contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best!

Sunday 28 April 2024

Anzac Day 2024

"They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old;
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them."
Lest We Forget

The 'Ode of Remembrance' comes from the poem "For the Fallen", written by Laurence Binyon.

These words are spoken at war memorials - the big and the small - all across Australia and New Zealand, and around the world at Gallipoli in Turkey, France, New Guinea and many other places on Anzac Day - 25th April - the anniversary of the dawn landing at Gallipoli in 1915 - the day that we have set aside to remember those who lost their lives or have come home damaged from war. 

I believe it is Australia's most important national day. 

Every year we go to the Dawn Service to remember two family members who we have never met but who are part of the reason we live in the freedom of Australian as we do. 

Norman Clayden - my great uncle who was killed at Gallipoli on 27th April 1915, just two days after the beach landing - aged 19 - no known grave.
As well as his name on the Lone Pine memoral at Gallipoli, and the Perth War Memorial in Western Australia, we last year found his name on the memorial at Pingelly in the Western Australia wheatbelt, from where he enlisted. He looks so proud in his uniform this photo.

And my husband's uncle Richard Ramsden who died in a prisoner of war camp in Myanmar (Burma) on 29th October 1943 in World War 2 - aged 23 - buried at Thanbyuzayat War Cemetery, Mynanma - a place where his family have never been able to visit. We only just recently learnt about some of what he might have gone through as a wounded and sick captured soldier who was forced to work.

Two young men cut down in their prime. What a waste. With the wars still going on around the world, it is obvious we have learnt nothing.
We are grateful to the people who look after these resting places far across the oceans.

I have shared some of this before in different ways -

Anzac Day 2022

Anxac Day 2019 - Field of Lights, Albany

Remote Anzac Sunrise Reminders - 2023

Gallipoli and Anzac Day 2021

Thank you so much for stopping by. Do you have an Anzac Day commemoration where you live? Is there someone you remember on that day?

I value your comments and look forward to hearing from you. I will try to visit your blogs in return. Have a wonderful week. 

I am linking up to the link-ups below. Please click on the links to see fabulous contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best!

Monday 22 April 2024

Australian Dragon Boats and Dardanup Art Trail

 Hi everyone. I hope you are yours are doing well. 

Last week was a big week in our family with the Australian National Dragon Boat Championship Titles at Champion Lakes in Perth, Western Australia over 5 days 17-21 April, and the annual Dardanup Art Spectacular and Art Trail over the weekend of 20-21 April with the opening and awards night of the exhibition on Friday night. 

Our two sons were competing in the Dragon Boat raqcing and we went up to support them on Wednesday and Thursday. Our family has been involved in dragon boating since the summer of 1989-90, and we are members of a small regional club, the Forza Dragon Boat Club. Our club took out a swag of medals at the WA State Dragon Boat Titles a month ago, but it is a whole new experience and bigger challenge for Western Australian clubs to compete against the bigger Eastern states clubs, so unfortunately Forza didn't bring home any medals.

However they improved on their times, and on the last day of racing made the semi-finals in the Mixed 20's and Open Premier Division categories

We had eleven Forza paddlers competing with the WA State team on Friday, and they all won medals, albeit not gold, but a fantastic effort for a small club. Congratulations must go to all club members, paddlers, management and coaching team, especially our head coach and sweep, Paul Harrison. 

Unfortunately my husband and I had to come home on Thursday afternoon because my husband had some university work to do on Friday morning and we had to set up for the Dardanup Art Trail on Friday afternoon for the art trail over the weekend. I was there with all my usual - photography and botanical eco-prints on paper and cloth. I had a good weekend sales wise and it is always great to speak to all the people who come through. 

I was so excited to win the Photography section theme prize for the theme "Reflection" on Friday night.  We had to write a description of our image - This is what I wrote -  As we gaze out the window during our work day in the city we see reflections of our office windows in the windows of other buildings. Perhaps others are looking out at their reflections too. We are hemmed in by the buildings and the demands of work and economics, and feel we cannot escape. However over time the path-lines of our life will continually evolve, blur and change.

They say that winners are grinners and it was certainly true on Friday night at the Dardanup Art Spectacular art awards. Photography Group of Bunbury (of which I am a member) did exceptionally well. Judged by Sarah Henderson - Winner open photography - Jodie Deeley with Äutumn Tree; Winner Reflection theme - Jill Harrison with Reflecting Life; Highly Commended Open - Trevor Spivey with The Rose Hotel Corner; Highly Commened Reflection theme - ex member Chris Smith with Reflections on a Rainy Day. Honourable Mentions went to Glenys Hough, Chris de Blank, Trevor Spivey, Debbie Schramm, and Lina Coe. An Honourable Mention also went to Jill's Grandson Owen Harrison in the Secondary student division for his Rockpool Underwater Wonderland. You can see a list of all exhibition winners here - 2024 Dardanup art Spectacular winners

I want to thank everyone involved for their support over the weekend of the Dardanup Art Trail. Jenny Spokes and the Dardanup Art Spectacular & Art Trail committee for all your hard work putting together such a fabulous art exhibition and art trail. Father Wayne from the Dardanup Catholic church for allowing us to use the rooms again at the old Dardanup Convent, and Lisa for getting the space ready so brilliantly for us on Friday. Sarah Henderson for awarding me first prize in the photography theme "Reflections" division of the Art Exibition. The person who bought my red canna photo on the opening night of the exhibition - enjoy! The "convent girls" - Christine Blowfield, Sandra and Sylvia Nysten, (we have been exhibiting together I think 4 years now), Gemma Mangano (congrats again Gemma on winning the Portrait prize) and Cynthia Dix - you all make our space a great place to be for the weekend. My husband Rod for his continued support of me, my work and assisting me over the weekend - I couldn't do it without him. All the wonderful people who visited us over the weekend, chatted, encouraged, and loved my art enough to purchase from me - thankyou so much. You all help artists continue with their work. And who could have asked for much better weather! Glorious.

Unfortunately I didn't take many photos over the weekend so here are a couple from last year

It was a big week. Now for the clean up and pack away and I think spend some down time. And catch up on writing I need to do. 

You might also like:

Doodling on botanical eco-prints

Forza dragon boat club - 30 years and on!

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. Have a wonderful week. 
I am linking up to the link-ups below. Please click on the links to see fabulous contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best!

Mosaic Monday @ Soul & Mind & So On

Until then, enjoy your day... it won't be back.