100 people - #21: Catherine
Now Playing: r.e.m. - be mine
Topic: 100 people
I met Catherine in year 10 when I moved to Stawell and started at the local high school. We hit it off pretty much straight away.
She was pretty, intelligent, articulate, a talented illustrator and photographer, very into music and a very good friend. Over the years, very little has changed.
Despite our respective movements around Australia (both of us) and the UK (me), and the odd loss of contact here and there, we have managed to keep our friendship alive.
We were always willing subjects for each others' various assignments; I acted in her TAFE black & white 16mm film (which I wish I had been able to see!); she let me drape her in chains and seaweed (on separate occasions).
We have both been supportive and encouraging of each others' art, whether it be visual or literary.
During my road trip with Philip Ivens through the eastern states of Australia, we were lucky enough to arrange to meet Catherine and her partner, Aaron, to spend a long Easter weekend on Aaron's family's property, Shady Rest, in Wombeyan Caves at the base of the Blue Mountains in New South Wales.
The time spent there was a great opportunity for me to catch up with Catherine and Aaron, but also turned out to be a very inspiring one, with the old home site at my disposal to shoot self-portraits and other photographs amongst what was left of the previous home. I felt very spoilt.
During my time there, I only managed to snap a few shots of Catherine. She is animated to the point that finding a moment of calm in her is often impossible. Her mind and her body move at a rate of knots most of the time.
And though usually I would avoid shots like these; shots where someone is playing up to the camera, and specifically dropping into a defensive stance - the single finger salute taking centre stage - I think this actually sums up Catherine quite well in some respects.
She is done with the niceties of life. She doesn't really care too much what you think about her and how she lives her life. She's all about being in the moment and living her life the way she wants to. And she does.