Photography Projects with Marion F. Healy & Janet Ambrose

I did a series of photography shoots with Marion Healy, they were titled: What I love about Mackay, Homestead Frontier and Chicks in the Canefields. Along with other photographers, I was invited to photograph 30 Australian South Sea Islander women in four locations around the Mackay region. Here are some highlights of those four locations:

Two of the locations are significant in Australian South Sea Islander history; Far Beach where Pacific Islanders were first brought to Mackay in 1863 for the sugar industry. The boats sailed past Flat Island into the mouth of the Pioneer River and eventually to the wharf in Mackay where the Leichhardt tree still stands today. This is where they were sold to local cane farmers to first clear the land and work the cane fields. This was the reason these locations were chosen.

Chicks in the Canefields project was in commemoration of the days when the womens' fathers, grandfathers, mothers and grandmothers worked the cane fields. It was a very moving experience listening to these women talk about their families history, and I think the photographs reflect this.