My image making is about prayer.

I make images every day. Because, apparently, I cannot help myself. It is part of how I breathe.

As always, much of what calls to me are the creation of Naturalist Images. Images of the land as palette, images of nature's details.
Images often, of the littoral zone. My saltwater songlines.

My images form a significant part of my current life’s work: Songlines.
To walk mindfully through the landscape, listening, and exposing the digital sensor - extension of my heart - to what I encounter and witness around me.
Listening to my Stories. Listening to the Stories of the Land. Listening to that relationship.

 
I have been consciously making images for about three and a half decades. 
Whilst my Dad always had a wonderful old film camera, it was my first husband, of 36 years, who introduced me properly to taking photos, with an Olympus OM1. Through the coast and bushland of the Australian landscape, to the tundra of Norway’s far northern edges, to sparking and sizzling turquoise rocky bays in Greece, I learnt to look, to see, to feel what I was encountering and expose my heart on the film. 

Years passed. My camera broke. For six years, sans camera, I walked the rock and tide pools of Queensland’s Sunshine Coast, my heart still agape.
Still seeing. Still learning to see. Still in communion with Place. 

I bought another fancy film camera, a Canon. I went to Egypt. I made photos. Women shrouded in black, mosques of cavernous and calligraphic splendour, Nubian villages in gelato and ochre as the full moon rose over the dunes and I tried to capture the feeling of sound: camel pads in the sand drifts of otherwise silence.

The digital age emerged. 
I transitioned through a simple digital compact camera in the wilds of Kakadu, through the smorgasbord of European towns, and in the hallowed canyons of New York City. I made image after image of the places where the land echoes our own physicality. Body : Land. I used these images in my dance and yoga teaching, offering an experience of embodied ecology of Place. Consciously inhabiting the interior of the body.

Then my life changed.
At a time of deeply personal family trauma, all I could manage to do each day, was take my camera into the surrounding bush.
Walk around a lake and a bushland reservoir. Breathe. Commune with the spirits of trees, rocks, water, lichen. Heal...
Photography became a daily practice of Medicine.

I met a man who touched my heart, soul and life utterly.
A photographer. A writer. A wonder. American.
A gift.
For over a year we travelled the world. New places; Hawaii, New Zealand, Mexico. 
I bought an iPhone 7, and began to use its native camera. 
I learnt anew how to see. How to be, in relation with my subject.
I learnt to edit an image in a sensitive and evocative way, helping me to communicate what I felt as I made the image; enriching the viewer’s experience exponentially.
Together, we collaborated on four Image and Word Books, created a Portfolio of Body-Land Portraits, wrote and taught an online Contemplative Photography Course, built and curated a beautiful website, and wrote a Blog about our Nomadic Naturalist travels as we walked and made images as a daily way of life.

Then, more change.

The experiencing, the learning and the journey are ongoing.
I am blessed.

Narelle xo

 portrait by glen mckerrihan

portrait by glen mckerrihan