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 26 March 2012

Western Australia's amazing wildflowers

There is always something flowering in the Australian bush somewhere. There are actually over 12,000 known species in Western Australia alone - aren't I lucky! I just love getting out and photographing them.

Spring is when the main rush of wild flowers come on and we have done several wildflower drives throughout Western Australia at this time of year - of course our state is so vast you have to decide where you want to go this year! The locations, variety and density of flowers can vary from year to year depending on temperature and rain fall.

I have just completed Kim's colour week in here Beyond Layers e-course - how much fun that was photographing a different colour each day for the week. But as part of that I put together four collages of Western Australian wildflowers. I really enjoyed going back through my hundreds of images to put them together. What a wonderful opportunity it was to showcase Western Australia's amazing wildflowers.

So here I present to you - YELLOW! -
from the Kimberley in the north (the Kapok Bush) to Cape Naturalist in the south (the Yellow Tail Flower) and everywhere in between...........

From top left to right -
Goodenia, Casia, Yellow Plumed Grevillia, Yellow Tail-flower.
Ilyarri Gum, Podolepis, Feather-flower, Kapok bush.
Dryandra, Wattle, Munjina Yellow Grevillia, Silver Grevillia

PINK!  - stretching from the Kimberley in the north (the Kimberley Heath) to the south (Pincushion Hakea) and everywhere in between..........

From top left to right -
Kunzia, Painted Lady, Pincushion Cone Flower, Velleia
Pincushion Hakea, Pink Fairy Orchid, Mulla Mulla, Queen of Sheba Orchid
Kimberley Heath, Emu tree, Pink Tassels, Everlastings

BLUE! - Most of these ones come from the mid west (the Native Cornflower - see the red dirt background) or the south west (Hovea)....

From top left to right -
Dampiera, Blue Lady Orchid, Blue China Orchid, Sun Orchid
Hovea, Native Cornflower, Blue Squill, Scented Sun Orchid
Wild Violet, Blue Leschenaultia, Blue Fan Flower, Starflower

 and finally RED!  The ones you see below are found from the Pilbara (the Sturt Pea) in the north to the south coast (the Scarlet Banksia) and everywhere in between....

From top left to right -
Grevillia, Bottlebrush, Red Flowering Gum, Claw Flower.
Sturt Desert Pea, Eucalyptus Macrocarpa "Mottlecah" , Barrens Regelia, Federation Flame Kangaroo Paw.
Rose Mallee, Pea, Scarlet Banksia, Star Flower.

White wasn't one of the colours for the colour week - but here is one of my favourites - the Splendid Everlasting found in the Mid West.

And a carpet of yellow and white everlastings spreading through the bush at Canna in the midwest - a snapshot of what you can expect to see on a wildflower drive in Western Australia during spring.
It is autumn here now, but the project has made we want to start planning my spring wildflower drive now!

Thank you to Kim Klaeen for the Beyond Layers e-course and her textures. I am really enjoying learning about textures and other techniques, and opening up to the possibilities by looking, seeing and being inspired  "beyond layers".  To check out Kim's blog and classes click on the link - Kim Klassen Cafe

I am joining up with Mary at Little Red House for Mosaic Monday. To see her work and the work of other wonderful contributors around the world, click on the link - Mosaic Monday

Have a wonderful week. I hope you have enjoyed these beautiful blooms. I look forward to hearing from you.

Sunday 18 March 2012


Australia is a multicultural society. Everyone either personally or their ancestors has come from another country originally - even the original inhabitants, the aboriginals, came from another country to Australia. Multiculturalism can bring so much to a community - and if you are open to new ideas and other lifestyles and traditions, you can learn so much from other cultures.

In the last couple of weeks I have been fortunate enough to attend with my daughter-in-law a couple of multicultural events in Bunbury, showcasing the music, dance and songs of various cultures which are a part of our community.

Here are some scenes from the Bunbury Multicultural night - left to right - belly dancing, hula dancing, Spanish flamenco, Indian, Chilli, Brazil (I think), Maori, and the Chinese Lion Dance.  This is the second year i have gone to this wonderful free event. Also on sale was food from many nationalities. The light was a bit of a problem, and some of the movement was very fast, but I was reasonably happy with these pics.

The group below is the Burundi Band and Peace Choir. The group was formed by Jean-Phillippe Irambona to help overcome the pain and trauma of war and the many years spent in refugee camps in Tanzania, through singing, dancing and music. A wonderful cause and so inspirational - and they were wonderful to listen to and hear their story.

 Last week we went to the Viva Bunbury Latin street fiesta.  As well as dance and singing performances, two groups ensured that we danced the night away to Latin music. In the top LH corner you can see the lead singer of group "Bump" - this group really got the crowd into the party mood.
ps - the guy in the bottom LH corner is from last year - I just had to include this shot with the drums.

A couple of weeks ago I started attending a six week introduction to Spanish Flamenco dancing. My daughter-in-law has been Spanish dancing for a few years, and it is something I have wanted to do for a while. The music and dance is so powerful and passionate.

This is my teacher - Nicole -

and some of the colour and movement of Flamenco -

Have a wonderful week - and if you get a chance to see a multicultural performance - go!

I am linking up with Mary at Little Red House and other wonderful contributors at Mosaic Monday - click on the link - Mosaic Monday

Monday 12 March 2012

summer tomatoes

oh my goodness, the heat has been sapping here the last couple of weeks. Autumn is supposed to be here and we are still experiencing temperatures in the high 30s centigrade!
During January we had more rain than normal for summer, but February and the beginning of March - heat!

Our summer crop of tomatoes is all but finished. The plants are shrivelling in the hot sun. My husband would like to pull out the bushes, but the tomatoes are still producing a few which keep us going for salads.

These are tiny heirloom tomatoes - a variety is called "red fig" - it is an elongated tear drop type shape - not round. We have never planted heirloom tomatoes before - and it certainly has been a prolific bush.  My grandsons love the little cherry type tomatoes, which is why we grew a small variety.

Here are a few of the last tomatoes clinging to the bush -

 An here is a collage of tomatoes -  photographed in a nifty little bucket I bought from a garden shop last week, on one of my old boards under the shade of my patio - photographed with my new macro lens.

A couple of years ago on DPS when I was moaning about my "kit" lenses, a very wise person said to learn, practice, work out my style, use my lenses - and then, and only then, upgrade to a better quality lens.
How right he was! and that day has come! All last year I while I have been working on my food photography I wished for a better quality lens. And last Saturday my husband said "well buy one". And so I did. I bought a macro F2.8 100mm pro lens. It arrived on Thursday -  woo hoo! so excited about my new lens!

 And to finish a plate of plums - I love the stone fruit that is around this time of year - and especially these plums which are dark red inside - delicious. They are a variety called "rosa" very much like "satsumas" which we hardly ever see these days. Soon all the stone fruit will be finished, so I enjoy them while I can. Photographed here in morning light - I have to catch the morning light at just the right time on my north east  facing patio. I have sprayed the plums with water to give them that fresh just picked look.

Thank you for looking everyone. I look forward to hearing from you.

I am joining Mary and other amazing contributors at Mosaic Monday at Little Red House - to see their work please click here - Mosaic Monday

Have a wonderful week.

Monday 5 March 2012

Blueberries for breakfast

I really struggled with the bright morning light and the moving shade of my patio this morning. It would have been much better with cloud - but it is summer - so deal with it I guess. But in a way the moving shadows of the palm leaves, and the shadows caused by the pergola battens added another dimension and certainly a challenge!

Anyway, I made pancakes with blueberries. I wanted to put the blueberries "into" the pancakes, but they are sooooo expensive! as they are imported from New Zealand - and I wanted to use them for styling - so have put them on the side and in the bowl.
Pancakes for breakfast anyone? with honey drizzled over?

Thank you Tartelette for the inspiration. I can only dream of being a photography like Helene and her book "From Plate to Pixels" about food photography is wonderful.  You can see her amazing work here - Tartelette

 Here you can see cutting into the pancakes

 And just the blueberries...............

And for my submission for Kim's Texture Tuesday - I have added Kim's texture "happy heart" to my blueberry pic - per the brief.  It has put just a bit of additional texture onto the wood. I love these old boards which I bought really cheaply from a salvage yard. They make a great table top for my photography. I put them onto a table with wheels that I have which I can move around chasing the light.

Texture was applied multiplied, and then I wiped off a bit on the edge of the bowl and the handle of the spoon and the blueberries in the middle of the bowl. I "picked" the colour of the writing by pointing to the blueberries.
To join in the fun at Texture Tuesday - click here - www.kimklassencafe.com/thecafe

 Thank you so much for looking. I really look forward to hearing your thoughts as they really help me to improve. Thank you in advance!

Wednesday am -  I'm back! Kim's latest edition of her "Beyond Layers" e-course was about conversion to black and white and then bringing back some colour, and about making "brushes" in Photoshop. 

So I have decided to convert this blueberry pic to black and white and then rubbed off the B&W over the berries to reveal the blue of the berries. 

I have also learnt how to create a "brush" tool with my watermark signature, and also a brush tool with a little Eucalypt logo I use on the back of greeting cards. You can see it up next to my name, and I have also stamped it onto the white of the bowl so you can see it. So many new things to learn!