We received a theme submission recently that was a bit different from the norm. It wasn’t a model shoot. It wasn’t beautiful shots from a wedding or gathering. It was shots from an experience. An experience that Kalian Lo had, living on a cattle ranch in the Australian Outback. All images were taken on a Polaroid Spectra with expired Polaroid Image Softtone film from 2009. You can find more of Kalians work at the following links.
The following text was written by Miriam Johnson of OUIDIDI – Oui Dream It Do It!
“I met Kalian while she was living in Australia — she had just spent three months working on a cattle station in North Queensland with her boyfriend, a musician, who had been raised on a cattle farm. They specifically took the most remote job they could find — a speck on the map near the mining town of Moranbah, hoping for an honest glimpse at life in the outback.
They started out living in a small, prefabricated shack, working separately in the blistering 40° heat of the dry season. Jay handled the cattle and Kalian did a variety of jobs. Her first, most tedious job was solitary: collecting large sticks and tree trunks for burning piles. She moved onto mixing cement for fences and working with the station’s contractor. “The people made the whole thing worth it, especially because for them, this was their whole life.” She didn’t make the kind of friendships where you’re talking until dawn, no. She made the kinds of friendships that happen in silence, when you work in hard labor and accustom to the rhythm, simplicity and steady hum of the people beside you. I asked her what was unique to her experience. “Death is something you see regularly here, you get used to it, how nature can be foolishly cruel. And at the same time, life always finds her way out.”
Like her subjects, she’s not afraid to mix cement under the blazing sun. When she captures peoples’ lives, it is with the same grit on her hands of working alongside them.”