Canberra region, ACT

A Canberra photographer's reflection on 2020

By Lauren Sutton

August 19, 2020 | 3 minute read

In this guide, Canberra photographer Lauren Sutton reflects on how COVID-19 has affected her during 2020.  

Reflecting back on the last 6 months since we first went into lockdown because of COVID-19, a lot has changed. The start of this year was particularly busy for us, with a wedding and other event every weekend, leaving no time to go away on weekend adventures. While it was amazing to celebrate with so many of our friends, lockdown was almost a welcome break from the frequent socialising - giving us time to do jobs around the house, garden, play with our puppy, and enjoy spending time together. 

During March I was really missing taking photos. Most of my photography work had been cancelled or postponed and we weren’t travelling anywhere, so I tried taking some self-portraits at home. Then I saw Jamie Beck’s #isolationcreation project on Instagram and decided to join in. Our garden was full of flowers and the first frost was due to come soon, so I picked some of the flowers and froze them in water and then photographed them. From this my frozen flora print series was born. I found getting started again was the hardest step and was definitely more inspired and creative when I was taking photos again.

Frozen Flora
Frozen Flora

While most travel is off the table, we have been doing a little bit of travelling close to home. We were lucky enough to spend 2 weeks on the NSW South Coast when the restrictions eased in June. A much-needed break after a busy time at work for my husband and it gave us the opportunity to explore more of that region than we had before. 

Days were spent surfing, swimming, taking our puppy for walks on the beach, shell hunting, reading and just relaxing. We stayed in Broulee and explored some of the beautiful areas of the coast within a short drive to the north and south. 

We have also done a bit of exploring around Canberra and took a trip up to Mount Coree in the Brindabellas one afternoon. The drive up there is beautiful, winding through lush rainforests, over creeks and through tall open eucalyptus, with incredible views from the top!  

Perisher Back Country
Perisher Back Country

It has been strange not to go to the snow over winter. Normally we would be spending every free weekend skiing, but this year we decided to cancel our season passes and take a year off. It has been nice to spend more time at home, but it doesn’t really feel like winter without regular trips to the snow! 

Alongside my full-time work, I am now slowly starting to do more photography and design work. Mostly creative collaborations at this stage as we start to get back in the swing of things, but the work is slowly starting to come back which is great.  

I know that so many people have struggled through this time and feel for the people who haven’t been as fortunate as me to continue without too much change to their lives. I guess what I have learnt during this time is what is important in life. Spending time with the people you love. Learning to slow down and not to rush through life. Appreciating nature in my own backyard. Prioritising things that really matter. Travelling close to home. And how important your health is, physically and mentally.  

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