Hi, I’d like to share this short film (< 3mins) I made of my great-auntie Eva … click on the image to view
A morning tea spent with my great auntie, at her unit in the retirement facility where she’s lived for more than 10 years. Her incapacities restrict her movements, and she no longer leaves the premises, yet her stoicism sees her through. Musing on her day to day life she seems quietly content.
Ever Christmas I challenge myself to design a Seasonal Card for an emailer … they usually end up as different forms of collage – photos mixed with sketches and handwritten text. This one was inspired indirectly by my mother Elvein … after I become riveted and lost in fascination looking through an selection of her old family photos. I like the feeling generated here, it crosses boundaries in time: a collage of family members across decades from 1920s through 1970s. The background image is from a family road trip up the west coast of Australia in a Holden Kingswood station wagon in about ’65. That’s me standing outside the caravan between my brother Christopher and sister Babette. My eldest sister Suzette has been superimposed at the doorway from ’73, and other sister Glennis, circa ’55, looks a little lost at the far right infront of the Model T. My mother is centre stage, appearing again as a young girl (holding the banner aloft) in the background, and with her parents as a new born. Her husband John, my father, stands proudly in his Army uniform circa 1943 at far left. Three generations … connected in spirit.
Happy Holidays, and Merry Christmas and, as the banner declares, All The Best For 2013
It’s been more than a few weeks since I last entered a posting.
My beautiful mother passed away a couple weeks ago after a relatively short illness. Much missed, though her memories and light will continue to influence me long into the future, making all those whose lives she touched richer. 88 years and 8 months to the day … a lucky life by Chinese numerological standards. A woman who created for herself and her children a rich sense of place, and inspired in me an appreciation for art, and a near insatiable wanderlust to explore – the later being a double edges sword: wonderfully inspiring and rich but a perilous curse to negotiate when set against the need to acquire roots to benefit kids and wife.
I’ll break the ice with a photo of her, and recommence posting as of today. I raise this toast in honour of my mother, Elvein Elizabeth Gostelow … to a life lived, bravo!
as unassuming and self effacing at 17 as she was at 88
I’ve just returned to Perth from a busy 6 weeks in China. After the typical intense heat and sweat of summer in the Middle Kingdom, this September and October in Shanghai were unusually mild. While there I completed filming on my short film Pop and had opportunity to shoot in remote Ningxia province for an upcoming feature in Australian Financial Review Magazine (more about that in an upcoming blog post), fly to Beijing to shoot a portrait for Boss magazine and travel to Nanjing for Forbes Asia magazine. This later commission was a cover shoot for the special edition Chinese Richest issue, I was there to shoot Zhang Jindong, Chairman of retail giant Suning, and one of China’s richest men, who is now venturing into online sales. We went to his new headquarters in an industrial park on the outskirts of Nanjing, and had use of his 17th floor office – yes, his office is the entire floor – to conduct the shoot. I chose to utilise the corridors and open spaces, capitalising on a backdrop of washed-out curtain walling for a simplistic, contemporary and uncluttered image. Following our allotted 30 minutes, we joined him for a supreme Chinese banquet lunch (no sea cucumber thankfully) on the upper floor, the top floor. After packing up our gear, we had time to get a tea at Starbuck’s in the lobby (thank God for Starbuck’s, they even have English Breakfast Tea) before heading back to Shanghai on the express tran later in the afternoon.
Next instalment I’ll talk a little about Pop. Here are a couple images from the Forbes Asia shoot.