Inspired by nature – and particularly birds – Marguerite Lamb is a local who calls Green Point home. Marguerite has both the skill and patience to capture our feathered friends, but can also be seen out and about taking photos of local happenings and events. Check out the Forster Digital Photography Club website to see more examples of Marguerite’s – and other talented photographers’ – work …
What part of the Manning-Great Lakes do you call home, and how long have you been a resident?
I first came to this area in 1999 and lived in Tuncurry, then in 2004 we moved to the lovely village of Green Point and built our new home.
When did you first pick up a camera – and do you remember what model/type it was?
I was about nineteen when I started to use my father’s Foth-Flex German single lens reflex film camera. I was seven when my father passed away, and my mother used to tell me about my father wanting to take our photos under the old peach tree when we were babies.
Dad did his own developing, enlarging and printing in his dark room in the garage. Mum gave me lots of two and a quarter inch square black and white photos of my three sisters and I when we were children. I still treasure these photos.
Later I bought myself a Casina camera, to take on my first overseas trip in 1969. Of course, in those days it was all slide film Agfa, which I used for many years.
What life skills/career choices have you learned/made over the years that you feel have led you to your talent “behind the lens”?
Teaching Design and Technology and Textiles taught me about the elements and principles of design and how to really see colour, textures, lines, shapes all around me – and in particular with the natural world.
I used to take my students to the Botanical Gardens and the Rocks area in Sydney to draw and photograph plants, flowers, seed pods, patterns in leaves, as well as architecture and reflections – all of which could be used later in their design projects.
I try to apply these principles and of course, good composition, to my photographs.
Who or what motivates you to take photographs?
I love nature – and birds in particular. I particularly like to observe and to record the life cycle of bird families.
My bird report with images of the local birds appears regularly in the Green Point Community Newsletter and on their website.
During my travels overseas, I like to photograph the differences in culture and landscape – in particular the rich culture and architecture of European churches.
When you pick up camera and point it at a subject, what thoughts generally go through your mind? Are you focused on composition/lighting etc. or more about telling a story through the camera’s eye?
I look for great lighting when possible, but I am always aware of composition (the grid on the viewfinder helps). With nature and street photography, I like to observe the behaviour of the subjects first, then try to capture the action which could tell a story e.g. a bird feeding its young, or interacting with other birds.
In some of my images, I concentrate on the patterns and textures in the natural environment; for example, tree bark after a rain storm, when the colours and texture become really accentuated.
What are some of the photographs you have taken that you are most happy with – and why do you like them?
The photos I am most happy with are the Norwegian Warehouses, as the early morning light in Norway is very special, and the houses are very colourful.
My Osprey photographs are very special to me, because I also enjoy watching and photographing the Rainbow Bee-Eaters every year when they come to our area in spring.
What are some of your favourite places in the world and locally to take photographs?
One of my favourite places in the world is Green Point, where I am lucky enough to live.
Green Point offers me a rich, natural environment with lots of bird life, magnificent views of the lake in all its moods, as well as the wildflowers growing in our local National Parks.
There are many activities and events in the local area that I enjoy photographing, including the annual whale migration.
Overseas, I am searching for something a little different. I am attracted to the magnificent castles, gardens and quaint villages with their cobbled stone streets and alleyways, such as St. Paul De Vence, Grasse in Provence in France. Bavaria in Germany is one of my favourite places for photography.
What camera/photographic clubs are you a member of, and how do they assist with your photography?
I am a member of the Australian Photographic Society (APS) and Forster Digital Photography Club (FDPC).
The APS has assisted me with competitions and lots of advice, workshops and some very inspirational photographs. Recently the APS held its convention at Club Forster. In the themed print exhibition, my entry of ten photographs showed the life cycle of the Osprey family who live on the Lakes Way at Green Point.
As a member of Forster Digital Photography Club, I have been helped by the monthly competitions, which are judged and critiqued by experienced photographers. Our experienced members also share their knowledge at workshops and short tutorials.
I really appreciate that our club members are willing to encourage and help other members.
What are some of the awards/acknowledgements you’ve received for your photography?
I have entered a few overseas competitions, where I have received acceptances and merit awards.
The Australian Photographic Society has organised various competitions, in which I have had acceptances – particularly in the Nature Division.
My image of mating frogs won the Print Division Trophy of The Northern Zone competition. The photography clubs in the Northern region of NSW hold a Northern Zone competition annually.
The local Great Lakes Art Society (GLAS) holds an annual exhibition, which includes photography. I have won prizes in this exhibition, and as a consequence I have sold some of my images.
If you had to pack a camera bag for a spur of the moment trip, what are the items you would grab without thinking?
My camera bag with the Panasonic Lumex GX8 Micro four thirds camera and one 100 – 400 mm Panasonic lens and one 14 – 140mm Panasonic lens, a polariser and a tripod – or maybe monopod – spare batteries and cards … And a few chocolate munchies.
Where can we see more samples of your work or find out more about you?
I don’t have a website, but my images are on the Forster Digital Photography Club website: www.forsterdigitalphoto.com/