Sunday, 15 April 2012


Guest blog by David Alexander

“Don’t be afraid to chase you Dreams”. I have heard this saying all my life but only in the last few years have I realised how much satisfaction you can get by doing exactly that, your outlook on life will change.

With determination, hard work, support from family and friends and the right guidance/teaching from Bluedog Photography I have seen my dream of calling myself a photographer coming to fruition. I have been offered the opportunity to have one of my photo’s (taken at a Bluedog Test Workshop) made into a poster that will be handed out at V8 Race Meets during the 2012 season.

The SP Number 9 car is driven by Shane van Gisbergen who is currently running fourth in the 2012 V8 Supercars Series. The young Kiwi has driven the SP car for SBR racing since 2008 and is one of the up and coming stars of the V8’s.

So what I have discovered is don’t be afraid to step-up to the plate – tell the world you are a photographer (if that is your dream) be proud of what you produce and keep learning your craft and your dreams can come true.

 Image by David Alexander

Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Who is the Cunnamulla Fella?

Stan Coster was ‘ringing’ (working as a sheep-shearing “ringer”) around Cunnamulla in the 1950’s when he wrote the words of the ‘Cunnamulla Fella’.  Slim Dusty later recorded the words as a song.

So who is he? Well locals in Cunnamulla say he is the larrikin in all Australian’s. When Stan was in the region working on stations during the 1950’s and 1960’s Cunnamulla was enjoying steady prosperity due to high wool prices and increased demand for the fine merino clip produced from the Mulga country. It was the days, they claimed, when Australia was riding on the sheep’s back. Wool was fetching a pound for a pound and cattle were worth their weight in gold.

Friday and Saturday nights saw the young ringers and shearers hit Cunnamulla for a weekend of ‘drinkin, lovin and fightin’. After a week of working hard – 15 or 16 hour days were not unheard of - they also played hard. 

Mike Nicholas, an artist, was based in Cunnamulla as a policeman in the 1960’s and these young men inspired his drawing of the ‘Cunnamulla Fella’. A young man with pannikin in one hand, sitting on his rolled up swag having a yarn at the end of the day. He later recalled seeing boys as young as 14 sitting on their swag waiting for the grazier or mail truck to pick them up for another jaunt on one of the huge stations.

Since then the character The Cunnamulla Fella has grown into the legend it is today. So when you next venture west into the mulga country with its orange tinted soils and friendly outback folk check out the huge bronze statue sculptured by Archie St. Claire. He sits on the green lawn in front of the Paroo Shire Council gazing down the main street. 

There may not be as many ringers, shearers or even pubs for that matter that once overflowed with these men cashing in the weekly cheques as back when Stan was amongst them but one thing is for sure, there are still the larrikins, the yarns and the colourful characters out there.

‘Well I’m a scrubber, runner and a breaker too,
I live on damper and wallaby stew,
I’ve got a big cattle dog with a staghound’s cross,
I never saw the scrubber we couldn’t toss,
Cause I’m the Fella from Cunnamulla
Yes I’m the Cunnamulla Fella”

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Easter in Australia!

By Danielle Lancaster

Tomorrow is Good Friday and the start of the Easter holidays for those on our time clock down here in Australia. Some of you may already know that those of us here at Bluedog Photography support Easter: specifically, the Easter Bilby!

You see, a while ago we adopted, along with many others, that it should be the native Australian Easter Bilby hopping into our children's lives here in Australia not the feral rabbit.

Did you know bilbies breed like rabbits but it's the unfortunate presence of the fox and cat (and once man) that forced the lesser Bilby to extinction and the greater Bilby to  within a breath of it: by the way we have no malice to cat owners either. They are just best indoors at night).

My personal story with the Bilby was kicked up a gear on a trip to outback Queensland, some 18 years ago. I'd been showing my children the work being done through journals, scientific papers, news paper and magazine clippings and a very different internet than we have today about this cute little animal. We had the fortune to call into Charleville EPA headquarters and catch Peter McRae, the scientist behind the long hard studies and attempts to save the Bilby there.

 Peter and a Bilby at Currawinya National Park

John, my eldest son, a mere 8 at the time, emptied his entire pocket money and savings that day into Peter's palms. As the coins dropped onto Peter's work ridden hands, the skin creases encrusted with dirt from a good days hard work in red soil country, there was a moment. Peter accepted this stream of coins with as much dignity, as I later saw him accept thousand dollar cheques.

In the recent opening of my exhibition 'Across my Path' Peter features checking out the Bilby Fence within Currawinya National Park. And he is happy to report that inside the fence the Bilbies are breeding like rabbits!

So if you don't do it already consider changing to the Bilby for Easter. And make saving the bilby one of the most delicious things to do. Australian chocolate manufacturer and retailer Darrell Lea has been making chocolate Easter bilbies since 1994 raising in excess of $225,000!

Did you also know that in 2003, bilbies outsold bunnies by eight to one here in Australia! But be aware: it's only Darrell Lea bilbies that donate sales from their bilby chocolates back to the fund.

Have a safe and happy Easter everyone!

 Peter checks out the Bilby fence at Currawinya National Park.