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.



Wednesday 30 May 2012

Coral Bay, Western Australia - blue on blue

created from an image I took at Coral Bay

We have just returned from two fabulous weeks at Coral Bay on Western Australia's spectacular Coral Coast. The weather was warm, but not too hot, the water temperature was perfect, the snorkeling was fantastic, there was lots of people about enjoying the sun, we had a wonderful time with our friends who came to stay with us for a week and my husband got to do some fishing and bring home some fish - AND the relaxing relaxing relaxing - morning and evening walks on the beach, stunning sunsets, sitting under an umbrella on the beach reading a book, flopping around in the warm water snorkeling amongst the beautiful fish, taking heaps of photos, trying out my new underwater camera housing, having our meals out on the veranda, not bothering about TV or news or work or computers. A wonderful holiday all round. 
read on for more..........


Bikini girls tumble out of painted vans
Sun-kissed laughter and languages merge
In a kaleidoscope of sound
Mazarine ocean sandwiched between yellow sand and sapphire sky
The fringing reef a tumble of white on the horizon.

Bring the picnic baskets and spread out the beach mats
Sunhats and sunscreen and rainbow umbrellas
Buckets and spades
Build sandcastles on the beach
Families and children mingle
Grandmothers under sunhats read from beach chairs
Grandad tips buckets of water into the moat
Boys running send seagulls squawking from their patch of sand
Little girls in frilly bathers
Brown skin baking
Ice-cream dripping over chins and fingers
Kayaks cutting through the sparkling blue.

Pull on goggles and snorkel
Wiggle into flippers
Transport you to another world
Filtered light creating patterns on the rippled sand
Flashes of silver and gold just out of reach
Weave through their underwater garden

Little stripy peers at you through the glass
An open clam waits
A spreadeagled star fish guards his collection of shells
A turtle glides across the coral floor
Following his mate into the approaching shadows.

Time to shake the sand from wet towels
The last glows of light
Turn the sky pink, red and purple
Couples entwined linger
A guitar softly strums its love song
A heron stalks the shallows
Golden ripples whisper on the sand

                                                               by Jill Harrison May 2012 

Blue, so bright and crystal clear it is startling. Its warmth envelopes me, calm and soothing as I float in another world, weightless. Floating with the current, absorbed by the sights around me I can only hear the sound of my own breathing.

Fish swim around me in shoals, parting and reforming, flashes of silver and gold in the sunlight. Tiny fish in a myriad of colours and patterns dart in and out of their underwater garden.  I am close to the shore in only a couple of metres of water but the underwater world of coral and brightly coloured fish around me is amazing.

I am snorkeling on the Ningaloo Reef at Coral Bay.  For someone like me who has never dived and has rarely snorkelled, the underwater experience was amazing, (made even more special by my new underwater housing for my camera!) and goes to show that nearly everyone can experience the reef. 
The Ningaloo Reef which stretches 260 kilometres along the North West Cape and covers 5,000 square kilometres, is the jewel of Western Australia's Coral Coast. It is one of the largest fringing coral reefs in the world, home to 250 species of coral and 500 species of fish and a prime conservation and sanctuary area as well as one of Australia’s great nature based tourism locations.

It is also one of the few places where you can swim with the world’s biggest fish, the Whale Shark which visits Ningaloo Reef from late March until July each year following the mass spawning of coral. Exmouth celebrates by holding its bi-annual Whale Shark Festival.

The Coral Coast and the Ningaloo Marine Park can be easily explored by staying at Exmouth at the top of North West Cape, or its smaller neighbour Coral Bay, 155 kilometres south. Both towns are geared towards tourism, but Coral Bay exudes a more casual relaxed holiday feel.

Most of Coral Bay’s small population is directly involved in catering for the hundreds of tourists that come here every year to catch the winter sun, experience the reef and relax on the beach that is only a stones throw from the front door of your caravan or holiday cottage.

Any time of day you will find people sitting on the beach, swimming or snorkelling on the reef that starts only metres from the shore. The town beach provides safe swimming for children and fish can be seen swimming in shallow water near the shore line, making it a favourite place for families. It also attracts many “grey nomads” judging by the number of retirees you can see sitting on the beach or in the water talking about their travels around Australia.

Dive tours are conducted daily from Exmouth and Coral Bay, but you can also experience the coral gardens of the reef by taking a tour on the glass bottom or submariner boat. For non divers, the submariner and their informative guides bring you in close contact with the underwater world. It is also great for children, who love seeing the fish through the glass. 

At days end ...... sunset walks along the beach......
Golden ripples whisper on the sand

these few words from the WA Department of Environment and Conservation sum it all up - Marine parks and reserves protect Western Australia's underwater wonders from top to bottom. We need marine parks for the same reasons we already have national parks on the land. Together they protect our precious plants and animals, above and below the water line.  
To learn more please go to Nature Base

Do you like the postcard at the beginning of the post? - I created this from one of my images, manipulated in Photoshop Elements with a technique taught in one of Kim's Beyond Layers e-classes.  To check out Kim's classes please go to her blog by clicking here - kimklassencafe
Thanks for stopping by. I hope you have enjoyed these images and excerpts about Coral Bay.  I would love you to leave a comment - I look forward to hearing from you.

I am linking up to Mosaic Monday at Little Red House - please click on the link to see the work of other wonderful contributors. Mosaic Monday at Little Red House
The power has been off all day today, so I am a little late in connecting! and I know I wrote this a week or so ago - but I so wanted to share some of Coral Bay with you!

I look forward to hearing from you.

Wednesday 23 May 2012

Discover Gold at Dundas, Western Australia

On the road between Esperance and Kalgoorlie? - for an interesting side trip off the highway visit the Dundas heritage trail just south of Norseman.
My article about the Dundas heritage trail -  "The Old Coach Road" - was published in On the Road magazine's June 2012 edition. We visited Dundas last October on our way north from Esperance. It was certainly worth the side trip and an interesting insight into life on the gold fields in the 1800s.

Please click on the link to see a quick preview - On the Road Magazine

The opening page to my article

 Here is a short excerpt from the article............

Travelling along a bush track amongst Eucalypt scrub on the goldfields we didn’t expect to see a cricket pitch.  It was cracked and worn, but remains as a tangible reminder of a long past community life. We found the pitch along the 25 kilometre Dundas Coach Road Heritage Trail just south of Norseman and we wished we had some cricket gear with us. 

The old cricket pitch laid in 1895 near the old Break O'Day minesite.  The fortnightly cricket matches were the centre of social and sporting activities for the miners and their families.

If you are travelling across the Nullarbor to Western Australia, or from Kalgoorlie to Esperance, you will reach Norseman at the end of the Eyre Highway. Instead of rocketing along the highway in your quest to reach Esperance and the coast, I suggest you take a break by turning off the highway and explore the hidden treasure that is the old Dundas goldfields. 

There are 10 stopping places along the trail which starts at the racecourse just two kilometres south of Norseman. Interpretive panels describe the fortunes and fates of the men and women who had come here with hopes of striking it rich, the harsh life on the goldfields, and an insight into Dundas’s short history. 
 Each site is well-signposted, and the route is easy to follow. Some sites have picnic tables or walk trails along the well-formed sand-gravel track which is suitable for 4WD, or 2WD in dry conditions.
Gold was first discovered around Dundas in 1890 by pastoralist William Moir, followed by prospectors Mawson and Kirkpatrick, who rode overland on horseback to Southern Cross to register the first claim, “Mawson’s Reward”, in 1892.  A townsite was laid out near Noganyer Soak in 1893, not far from the original Mawson’s Reward lease. However Dundas’s fortunes were short-lived when richer gold finds were found near present day Norseman when Laurie Sinclair’s horse, Hardy Norseman, uncovered a gold nugget in 1894. Norseman boomed and the town of Dundas disappeared. 
The old Dundas dam, built on a rock outcrop with stone walls to channel and hold rain.

At the site of the Dundas town near Dundas Rocks you can see a map of the old townsite. We read that Dundas was a ramshackle place of mainly tents and rough bush timber huts. Many of the town’s inhabitants disembarked into their new world at ports on the south coast, walking to Dundas with their wagons of belongings along rough tracks. As you wander about the abandoned townsite you can only imagine the struggling existence of the miners and their families.  Many were ill prepared for the heat and their basic living and working conditions, but strong bonds were formed as they learnt to reply on each other in their new harsh environment.

Quandongs were an important food for the Ngadju aboriginal people and settlers.  The thin layer of fruit wraps around the knobbly kernel which can also be eaten or ground to make flour.

 To read more about the Dundas heritage trail please see the June edition of On the Road magazine, or visit the Shire of Dundas website by clicking here  - Dundas -
 The click on "tourism" and "attractions" to find a downloadable pdf map of the trail. 

Saturday 5 May 2012

Feel, live, be - every moment is a gift

As I left work late Wednesday afternoon there was the beginnings of the most magnificent sunset. So instead of going straight home I drove to the beach, took off my shoes, and walked on the beach to take some photos.
It was a true gift.

I heard part of an interview with Burt Bacharach on the radio coming home his afternoon. He is in Australia doing a tour at the moment.

Burt is in his 80s and he said that he still loves to be able to make people react to his music, for them to feel something.

And it got me thinking - Is that why we enjoy our photography, why we share our images - we want to inspire people to feel something?

I know I am probably showing my age, but Burt's love ballads I am sure have inspired many people over his six decades of song writing.

And certainly now "what the world needs now is love"

You can read more about Burt here -

My image is overlaid with Kim's "Hope Filled" and "I Am" - fitting I think.

As my Flickr friend, cnocera1, so eloquently replied....

 Jill, you are absolutely right. As a photographer/artist our goal and hope is to convey an emotion - one that we felt when we observed a scene (good or bad) - or to evoke an emotion in the viewer. Inspiration is our gift and our reward. Thank you for inspiring me. Love your work.

Have a wonderful weekend and take time to spend with those you love, enjoy the sunrise-sunset, and smell the lavender!