Photographers covering protests in many parts of the world need to consider logistics, politics and, above all, their personal safety. In Australia, one of the main considerations is whether to cover the event at all.
Glancing up while sitting in the departure lounge of Grantley Adams Airport in Barbados my heart sank – oh crap! – joining me and a few other passengers in the waiting area was the Australian Cricket team. Nothing personal, all good guys. Some passengers, who were clearly supporters, reacted with muted excitement. But it became painfully obvious to me, the team was joining us on our flight leaving shortly for St Vincent. I smiled an evil grin at the ignorant supporters in the lounge for they were unaware of the fact that the team’s presence on our plane meant only one thing and it wasn’t good… but I will come back to that.
Distance is a bit of an issue in Australia and every year we shoot a number of drought-related features that require us to drive 8, 10 or even 12 hours inland. Out there is where it’s really dry, where some farms haven’t seen rain for five years.
Climate change is a big issue in our patch of the planet, which covers Australia, the world’s driest inhabited continent, and some South Pacific nations that are at risk of vanishing because of rising sea levels. Droughts are getting longer and the cyclones that form in the Indian and Pacific Oceans each year keep getting bigger. Reporting on these subjects makes us ever more aware of the damaging effects humans can have on the environment.