Esther Beaton


Latest Outback Magazine

Have you seen the latest issue of Outback magazine? It’s published by the outfitter RM Williams. They manufacture such high quality supplies and clothing for stockmen that the clothes have now made it into mainstream fashion. The magazine is a lovely evocation of the life of country people in Australia. I guess it’s a bit like England’s “Country Life” toned down for us simpler, down-to-earth Aussies.  

I was lucky enough to get on the cover this month. (That is, one of my photos did.) Have a look at the June issue. Powerful photo, isn’t it? I bet a lot of overseas people don’t realize we have an alpine area blanketed by snow in winter (which is now).

The story behind this shot is just as good. I was asked by a documentary filmmaker who was producing a movie on wild horses, or brumbies, to be the still photographer. Brilliant – what a fantastic gig!

We were woken well before dawn in the most amazing way. There was quite a group of us: stockmen (the actors), cameramen, soundman, all camping in one of those old high country wooden huts. Suddenly, in the blackness of predawn, we were startled out of our sleeping bags by the haunting soundtrack of “The Man From Snowy River” movie, blasting out across the snow-covered valley.
Usually, when I’m on a shoot, I give the orders. I tell people where to stand, how to move, etc. But this time, I was low man on the totem pole. Not only did did cameraman number 1 and cameraman number 2 have priority, but even the soundman had more decision-making clout than me. While we were waiting for the mustered horses to come charging down towards us, the sound recordist told me to go stand behind a bush so the clicking of my shutter and motor drive would not be recorded. I was quite frustrated, thinking that I wouldn’t get the shot I wanted. My heart was hammering away and I was desperately hoping my settings were accurate, knowing I would only have a few seconds to capture the shots of a lifetime. It all turned out OK. The series of photos from that assignment have sold well and I’m glad they continue to be used to promote the amazing spirit and atmosphere of Australia – just like in this issue of Outback magazine.

8 thoughts on “Latest Outback Magazine”

  1. Love the blog Esther. What an amazing photo! It really captures one of the beautiful, rarely recognised aspects of the Australian outback.

  2. Love the blog and its content; the pic is a good size and so is the length of the post. Terrific photo – you’ve really captured the moment with these legendary Australian horses in their natural setting.

  3. Got there this time Esther….all reads and views bootifully….love the blog banner and your portrait. Cover pic is a winner..reminds me of the old Marlbora bill boards. The smokes were killing us but the pics were romantic..great action and lighting.

  4. Great to see your new blog Esther, will be very curious to see the developments. Naturally you have used the quintessential editorial/advertising/nature/Australian image that seems so far removed from our times.

    It reminds me of several shots that were winners in ACMP a few years ago, I’ll try and track down details and make a note to you.

    What surprised me, and thankfully, was that you maintained rights to the image and deservedly so.

    The page looks reasonably good, works in Safari though you might consider a margin around the edges to help relieve the eyes at the edges of the page.

  5. Havn’t caught up with you since the course … based in Alice Springs for a couple of months … your blog is a great start and very professional … I saw the R M Williams photo a couple of days ago .. it jumped off the news stand at me … “Electric, vital, crisp, exciting “… what more can I say … congratulations

  6. Robyn here….

    I was utterly taken by your written interpretation of the gusty male spider in his quest… the way you write!

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