Welcome to Life Images by Jill

Welcome to Life Images by Jill.........Through my writing and photography I seek to preserve images and memories of the beautiful world in which we live and the people in it.

I am a Freelance Journalist and Photographer based in Bunbury, Western Australia. My published work specialises in Western Australian travel articles and stories about inspiring everyday people. My passion is photography, writing, travel, wildflower and food photography.

I hope you enjoy scrolling through my blog. To visit other pages, please click on the tabs above, or go to my Blog Archive on the side bar. Please feel free to leave a comment at the bottom of any of my posts. I value your messages and look forward to hearing from you.

If you like my work, and would like to buy a print, or commission me for some work, please go to my "contact me" tab. Thank you for visiting my blog and helping me "step into the light".



Sunday, 26 April 2015

ANZAC Day - 25 April 2015 - 100 years centenary - We will remember them

On 7 September 1914 Norman Albert Clayden, a 19 year old Mercantile Clerk, originally from Pingelly where he had gone to school, his current address listed as C/- Hill & Hill, Wagin, Western Australia, enlisted, as did thousands of other young men from across Australia, only a month after the declaration of war on 4 August 1914.

Norman was a Lance Corporal and was assigned to the 11th Infantry Battalion AIF, H Company, a rifle company.

Following a period of training at Blackboy Hill Camp, Northam, the Unit embarked from the port of Fremantle, Western Australia, on board Transport A11 Ascanius on 2 November 1914.
The Ascanius formed part of the convoy of 38 troopships carrying approximately 35,000 Australian and New Zealand troops destined to join the Imperial Expeditionary Force. They reached the Port of Alexandria, Egypt on 2 December 1914, where they spent the next nearly 5 months before being deplored to Gallipoli, Turkey. 

Norman was shot in the head and killed on 2 May 2015 at Wire Gully on the Gallipoli Peninsula, only a week into the Gallipoli campaign.  

There seems to be some confusion over Norman's age. His Enlistments papers in 1914 show his birth date at 6/12/1892 and his age as 22 years and 8 months.  However The Australian Birth Index and his details given for the Roll of Honour Australian Memorial War Museum shows his birth as 1896.  Did Norman lie about his age when he enlisted? The following note was written on our family tree in Ancestry.com -  

Norman Albert Clayden enlisted into the 11th Battn Infantry, Australian Imperial Forces for service abroad, stating that he was a mercantile clerk and born on 6 Dec 1892 making him 22 years. At his death in 1915 he was actually only 19 years of age. His enlistment paper also stated that he had already done one years service with the 25th Light Horse.

I am currently searching to find Norman's correct birth date. 
What we do know is that Norman is one of thousands whose place of actual burial is unknown, but he is remembered on the:

The Lone Pine Memorial (Panel 33), Lone Pine Cemetery, Gallipoli Peninsula, Canakkale Province, Turkey.   (These pictures courtesy of my sister, J Shearing)

and Panel 61 on the WW1 Commemorative Wall at Australian War Memorial, Canberra, Australia. 

In Canberra you can place a poppy next to the name of your loved one. We did that when we visited in January 2012. Somehow seeing his name on the wall made Norman more real to me and ever since I have felt an intense grief when we attend the Anzac Dawn Service. 

Norman was my father's great uncle. In fact my father was named after him. Norman's brother Frederick Roberts Clayden was my paternal grandfather.
Their parents were William George and Clara Clayden (nee Drew), from Kulyaling, a small town in the Western Australia wheatbelt. His brother  Pte Ernest Wilfred Clayden, 11th Bn, served on the Western Front, and returned to Australia on 3 March 1919.

 The Lone Pine Memorial at Gallipoli commemorates the 3268 Australians and 456 New Zealanders who have no known grave and the 960 Australians and 252 New Zealanders who were buried at sea after evacuation through wounds or disease.

On 8 January 1916, the last British troops left Helles. The Gallipoli campaign was over. Gallipoli cost the Allies 141 000 casualties, of whom more than 44 000 died. Of the dead, 8709 were Australians and 2701 were New Zealanders.
You can read more by clicking here - Gallipoli & the Anzacs

 All across Australia and New Zealand, at Gallipoli and in France, and in other countries where Australians and New Zealanders gather there are Anzac Day services on 25th April. It is a time for us to remember them.
Below are some images from the Dawn Service and daytime march and service in Bunbury on Saturday 25 April.  Our War Memorial has just been restored, the white paint stripped off revealing the beautiful Donnybrook stone beneath. 

This year there has been many exhibitions, television programs, museum displays, etc commemorating the 100th anniversary of the Gallipoli landing. Even though it was a glorious failure (from the point of view of the Allies) an Australian identity was forged in those battle fields.

On 1 November 1914, 40,000 Australians and New Zealanders left Albany on our south coast, bound for Egypt and World War 1. The new National Anzac Centre on Mount Clarence in Albany gives visitors an insight into WW1 through their interactive, multimedia displays, artifacts, rare images and audio commentary. It is well worth a visit.  An overwhelming impression I received from the exhibition was to think about those people who may have returned home but continued to suffer for many years from the affects of their war experiences and the appalling human cost of war. There are many lessons we can learn.I fear however, that we have not.

The Centre overlooks beautiful Princess Royal Harbour from where the ships left Australia. For many it was their last view of their homeland. On the summit of Mt Clarence is the magnificent Desert Mounted Corps Memorial, featuring two mounted soldiers, an Australian and a New Zealander. It is a copy of a statue originally erected in Port Said in Egypt. Another copy is located in Canberra. I wrote about it on my previous Anzac blog post which you can see by clicking here - Anzac Memorial

The Albany Heritage Park on Mt Clarence where the Anzac Centre and War Memorial is located has been upgraded with walks and several new lookouts with magnificent over the harbour and ocean. You can also visit the Princess Royal Fortress.  

One of the lookouts is the Padre White Lookout. From 1916 to 1918 Padre White served as an army chaplain with the 44th Battalion. At dawn on the 25 April 1930 he led his parishioners from St John's Church to the summit of Mount Clarence where they watched a boatman laying a wreath in King George Sound. This was the first dawn service in Australia.
 You can see images of the church below.

Another exhibition we saw this year was "Camera on Gallipoli". A unique series of photographs taken at Gallipoli. This was an Australian War Memorial Travelling Exhibition on display in Busselton. Knowing that my great-uncle Norman died at Gallipoli I was moved to tears looking through this exhibition. In the photo below you can see soldiers trying to get some sleep in their trench.

Norman Albert CLAYDEN
Regimental number881
SchoolPingelly State School, Western Australia
ReligionChurch of England
OccupationMercantile clerk
Addressc/o Hill and Hill, Wagin, Western Australia
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation22
Next of kinW G Clayden, 9 Edward Street, East Perth, Western Australia
Previous military serviceLight Horse
Enlistment date7 September 1914
Date of enlistment from Nominal Roll18 August 1914
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name11th Battalion, H Company
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/28/1
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Fremantle, Western Australia, on board Transport A11 Ascanius on 2 November 1914
Rank from Nominal RollLance Corporal
Unit from Nominal Roll11th Battalion
FateKilled in Action 2 May 1915
Place of death or woundingGallipoli, Turkey
Date of death2 May 1915
Age at death19
Age at death from cemetery records19
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsThe Lone Pine Memorial (Panel 33), Gallipoli, Turkey

Parents: William George and Clara CLAYDEN, Craigie, Kulyaling, Western Australia. Native of Pingelly, Western Australia

Brother: 6488 Pte Ernest Wilfred CLAYDEN, 11th Bn, returned to Australia, 3 March 1919.

The Lone Pine Memorial stands over the centre of the Turkish trenches and tunnels which were the scene of heavy fighting during the August offensive. Most cemeteries on Gallipoli contain relatively few marked graves, and the majority of Australians killed on Gallipoli are commemorated here.

Above information is from: The AIF Project

Sadly I have been unable to find a photo of my great-uncle Norman Clayden. There is a famous picture of the 11th Battalion on one of the Pyramids in Egypt before they left for Gallipoli. Many of the men in the picture are unidentified. I know my uncle is among them - but which one is he?  There is a project to find out their names - you can read more about it at the link below. 

Camped in Egypt before being shipped to the Dardanelles, the men of the Australian Infantry Division’s 11th Battalion were ordered to a nearby landmark, for a group photo. It was likely the last ever image taken of many of them.
“After Church this morning the whole Battalion was marched up to the Pyramid (Old Cheops) and we had a photo took or at least several of them,” wrote Captain Charles Barnes in his diary for Sunday, January 10, 1915.

Click here to read more - 11th Battalion Egypt

Some further reading: please click on the links: 

Western Australian Genealogical Society Inc 

On 31 October 1914, two transport ships sailed from Fremantle. HMAT Ascanius carried Western Australia's 11th Infantry Battalion with South Australia's 10th Infantry Battalion and HMAT Medic carried Western Australia's 12th Infantry Battalion and 3rd Field Company Engineers. Also travelling on the Medic were Western Australian and South Australian men from the 8th Battery 3rd Field Artillery Brigade, Divisional Train (1 to 4 Companies Army Service Corps), 1st Division 3rd Australian Field Ambulance and the Divisional Ammunition Column.
The HMAS Pioneer and the Japanese ship HIJMS Ibuki provided escort. On 3 November 1914 they joined up with a large convoy from Albany to make their precarious journey to war. 

11th Battalion
The 11th Battalion was formed on 17 August 1914, less than two weeks after the declaration of war on 4 August, and was among the first infantry units raised during World War I for the all-volunteer First Australian Imperial Force.
On formation, the battalion consisted of eight rifle companies, designated 'A' to 'H', and a headquarters company with signals, transport, medical and machine-gun sections.

Australian War Memorial
Australians call the campaign “Gallipoli”; to Turks, it is “Çanakkale Savasi”. As part of the First World War, soldiers of the Ottoman Empire, on one side, and soldiers of the British Empire and France, on the other, fought a long and bloody battle on the Gallipoli peninsula.
The Turkish defenders were victorious. After an eight-month-long campaign British Empire and French forces withdrew, having suffered 44,000 deaths. At least 85,000 Turkish soldiers died in the campaign.
Consequently, Gallipoli is of profound importance to the national identity of both Australia and Turkey

Thank you so much for stopping by. I hope you have enjoyed this look at the Anzac Day tradition in Australia. I value your comments and look forward to hearing from you. I will try to visit your blogs in return. Have a wonderful week.

I am linking up to the link-ups below. Please click on the links to see fabulous contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best!

Mosaic Monday
Travel Photo Mondays
Our World Tuesday
Wednesday Around the World at Communal Global
Agent Mystery Case
What's It Wednesday
Travel Photo Thursday

You might also like:
  April - on Anzac Day we will remember them - 25 April 2014
Celebrating Australia Day and Waltzing Matilda - January 2014
Making Anzac biscuits  - June 2014

Sunday, 19 April 2015

Bushwalking at Hoffman's Mill, Harvey - Western Australia

Do you like bush-walking? Do you have a favourite walking track? 

I enjoy bush-walking when conditions are not too hot and the wildflowers are blooming. It is always a peaceful way to escape from our usual work-day lives. 

I also like to take photos of wildflowers, and I have always said you can always find something flowering in the Australian bush somewhere. And autumn is no exception.

Last Monday the rain eased and the sun welcomed a beautiful autumn morning. We hadn’t been bush-walking for a while as summer down here really is too hot, but with the arrival of autumn and a rare day to ourselves, we decided to take the opportunity to visit Hoffman’s Mill.  

Travelling north of Bunbury via the South West Highway we stopped in at the Harvey Visitor Centre to collect some pamphlets about bush-walking trails in the area.  We were told about a wildflower area not far away which evidently is worth a visit in spring (that will wait for another visit).
From Harvey we continued north and then turned east onto Logue Brook Dam Road. The Dam is actually built on Lake Brockman. It is a popular spot particularly for water skiing.  We came here with friends years ago. They tried to teach me to ski – I was hopeless! 

There are two campgrounds – Bush camping (no power & drop toilets) at the Dept Parks & Wildlife campground - DPAW-Logues Brook camping  and camping (with facilities) and huts at the  Lake Brockman Tourist Park 
Below you can see the dam, the camp kitchen and the campsites at the DPAW site.

From here we continued east along Logue Brook Dam Road, and then onto Clarke Road which took us to Hoffmans Mill.

The mill and timber town, New Hoffman, was established in 1919 by Millers Timber and Trading Company. In its heyday before the 1930s Depression it had 35 houses, general store, Post Office, a school with 20-30 students, community hall, tennis court and playing fields. A weekly train brought news, pay packets, supplies, and the doctor to the town. The mill was closed after bush fires destroyed Miller’s Nanga Mill in 1961 and Millers changed their operations.  

Today little remains of the town, but people are free to visit. You can still see evidence of past habitation and the mill, scattered pieces of machinery, and the existence of imported trees including several large fig trees that would have been planted in home gardens. There is an attractive picnic and camping area amongst the trees, with a basic camp kitchen, and flushing toilets.  There is plenty of room to set up if you have a large group and it is ok for caravans, although there is no power.

We sat at one of the picnic tables amongst the trees and ate our lunch before we went for a walk. From the picnic area a walking track crosses the Harvey River via a small wooden bridge and winds its way for three kilometres through the jarrah forest and along the river bank (allow 1 hour). Blue markers let you know you are on the right track.  Part of the way you follow the old rail formations and you can still see jarrah railway sleepers embedded in the track. It was wonderful to see how well the natural bush has regenerated after logging. The track is easy going other than one short uphill section. 

Unfortunately blackberries (an imported plant) have infested the river banks and are almost impossible to eliminate. They are a huge problem along streams throughout the South West. 

Below you can see in this pic some of the old railway sleepers. And in the RH image to remind you to be careful when you are bush-walking - a carpet python - not venomous - but you do need to be careful, you don't know what might be lurking. I wouldn't know what snakes are venomous or not - so best to be wary of them all!

 The banksias were flowering in profusion and the birds were flitting from tree to tree and chirping excitedly enjoying the autumn nectar. According to our guide book Golden Whistlers frequent this area.  We also saw a Robin Red Breast but he wouldn’t stop still long enough to photograph. I love hearing birds when we are out bush-walking. The bird song was in complete contrast to what it would have sounded like in this forest during the logging days. 

My daughter-in-law believes this is a Banksia Littoralis (swamp banksia) - beautiful isn't it? 

We were content to just wander slowly along the track through the sheoaks, banksias and jarrah trees, listening to the birds and enjoying the bush environment. So peaceful and relaxing. The outside world seemed far away.

My husband believes the bird below is a Rufous Whistler - not the more colourful Golden Whistler which evidently lives in this area. I thought I was very lucky to get this pic as I don't have a really long lens for taking bird shots and these birds were darting around everywhere and kept flying from tree to tree as we followed them, not stopping still for long. They are not silly.

I don't remember having visited Hoffman's Mill before, but we decided that it will be worth a camping weekend during spring, however I have since been advised that camping is prohibited between the end of Easter and 1 November. What a pity, as being so close to home it would have been a great weekend getaway spot. Oh well, it is not far for a day visit.

According to the WA Department of Parks and Wildlife, as Hoffman Mill is a water catchment area, they have an agreement with the Water Corporation that it will close for camping during peak catchment period.

From Hoffman’s we decided to drive out along the gravel Harvey-Quindanning Road. A huge bushfire went through here in January and I was keen to see the effects of the fire. The blackened area certainly showed how extensive the bushfire damage was, but already the trees and grass trees (Xanthorrhoea) are sprouting fresh new leaves and fronds.  The bright green was in sharp contrast to the black burnt trunks. You can see the grass tree in the top left image.

Along the road we saw a young echidna crossing the road. I felt a little sorry for him trying to live in this bleak fire devastated area. Some of his quills didn’t look in very good condition, and I hope he hadn’t been burnt trying to escape the fire by burying into the ground or into a log, although he seemed to be walking quite well. 

Particularly devastating along this section was the loss of the historic jarrah Long Gully Bridge, which was completely destroyed in the fire. Because of its location, the severity of the fire front and the thick bush around the bridge fire-fighters were unable to save the bridge, despite it being sprayed with fire retardant and being water bombed from the air. Built in 1949 to service the timber industry, this impressive 128 metre long bridge was part of the Bibbulumun Track which runs from Perth to Albany. The loss of this bridge and the Possum Springs track hut has been devastating to the group.

For more information and images and before and after images of the bridge, please click here - Bibbulmun Track - Long Gully Bridge

The Bibbulmun Track is currently closed and unsafe in this area from Driver Rd (south of Dwellingup) to Harris Dam picnic area near Collie due to the bushfires. The track is also closed between Northcliffe and Mandalay Beach on the South coast due to the January bushfires. Two track huts were destroyed in this section. 

If you are planning to walk on the Bibbulmun Track please go to their website for updates - Bibbulmun Track

Here is a pic of the Harris Dam Bibbulmun Track hut where were walked to and camped overnight a few years ago.

More information on Hoffman’s Mill
Hoffman Mill campground will close on Sunday the 19 April 2015 and reopen 1 November.

This is a very popular camp during school holidays and long weekends.
The large open camping area makes it excellent for group camping 

Camp fires are permitted in fire rings provided between 6pm and 10am, but fire restrictions may be imposed at any time and without notice. Bring your own firewood. Campers own liquid or gas fuel barbeques and stoves can be used at any time, unless a total fire ban has been declared. Note: a fire ban applies December–March; check with authorities for exact dates.

Flushing toilets with disabled access – gas BBQ - no dogs or pets allowed – no drinking water available 

Due to water catchment area - Fishing, marroning and swimming are not allowed.

How to get there: turn east onto Logue Brook Dam Rd from the South Western Hwy, 6 km south of Yarloop, and then onto Clarke Rd. 18km from the Highway.  GPS: S33° 00' 19.6" E116° 05' 08.8"
Fees apply and a ranger visits regularly to collect camping fees  - $7.50/adult, $5.50 concession, $2.20 child (6-15 years)

More information -
Dept Parks & Wildlife WA - DPAW-Hoffman Mill
Timber Towns in Western Australia - Hoffman Mill

A great bush-walking book is "Bushwalks in the South West" published by the Dept of Parks & Wildlife (formerly  Dept of Environment & Conservation" 

Do you have a favourite bushwalking or camping spot? Perhaps you would like to tell us about it in the comments.

Thank you so much for stopping by. I value your comments and look forward to hearing from you. I will try to visit your blogs in return. Have a wonderful week.


 I am linking up to the link-ups below. Please click on the links to see fabulous contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best!

- Mosaic Monday
- Travel Photo Mondays
- Our World Tuesday
- Wednesday Around the World at Communal Global
- Agent Mystery Case
- What's It Wednesday
- Travel Photo Thursday
- Friday Postcards at Walking on Travels 

You might also like -
Deep in the Boranup Karri Forest
Camping with heritage - Karalee & Boondi rocks
Dryandra woodland

Monday, 13 April 2015

Raindrops on roses

Raindrops on roses I think have suited my mood this past week, and there they were in my garden, like silvery glass baubles glistening on the leaves in the autumn sunlight seeping through the grey clouds.

Autumn has come to my part of the world in Western Australia, and with it has come the rain that we have desperately waited for. It rained in a steady drizzle for several days, a good soaking rain, breathing life into our dry gardens and land.

I used a macro lens and shallow depth of field like F/5 to blur the background. Remember to protect your camera from the rain!

So why my mood? Last week we laid to rest the ashes of my father who passed away on 6 September last year and my mother-in-law who passed away on 26 December.  It felt like leaving behind the last physical connection we had with them. The raindrops mingled with my tears. But I know they are at peace and reunited with their partners, brothers and sisters, mothers and fathers. They will be forever in our hearts.

 But there is joy too in the memories they have left behind.
I have taken this image through the leaves of other rose bushes, so that the blurred leaves in front softly framed the rose behind. Do you like the effect? 

To lift my mood I went to a follow up water-colour workshop with Marguerite Aberle at Lyndendale Gallery in the beautiful Ferguson Valley near Dardanup. These miniature paintings are going to be made into cards. It is years since I have painted and I have a lot to learn. But I really enjoyed the morning. Thank you Marguerite for a lovely "play" morning and for your generosity of spirit. You are a treasure.

As you can see the paddocks have welcomed the rain. Soon the grape vines and some of the trees will be putting on their autumn colours.

You can see my first post about painting with Marguerite here - Autumn arrives in Western Australia

Thank you so much for stopping by. I value your comments and look forward to hearing from you. I will try to visit your blogs in return. Have a wonderful week.

I am linking up to the link-ups below. Please click on the links to see fabulous contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best!

Mosaic Monday
Our World Tuesday
Wednesday Around the World at Communal Global
Agent Mystery Case
What's It Wednesday

You might also like -

How to take great flower photos  
Photographing flowers and using clouds as a natural diffuser 
 Autumn arrives in Western Australia

Monday, 6 April 2015

Lunar Eclipse, Western Australia, 4 April 2015

On Saturday night 4 April during the Easter period I was thrilled to be able to photograph the lunar eclipse.  We were out in the central Western Australian wheatbelt visiting my family who farm in the area, so conditions were going to be perfect with absolutely no ambient light from towns, highways, factories etc. 

The total eclipse was due to be at its peak around 8pm. Early in the evening the clouds started to roll in, but I was able to get some photos during the early phases of the eclipse.  In simple terms the lunar eclipse occurs when the earth passes between the moon and sun creating what they call "the blood moon".

The explanation below comes from www.space.com - please click here to read more - 
Total Lunar Eclipse

A total lunar eclipse occurs when the moon is fully submerged in the core of the Earth's shadow, called the umbra. The outer ring of the shadow is called the penumbra. When the moon passes into the penumbra, it darkens the surface of the moon, making it look as if a "bite" has been taken from the lunar surface. "Totality" occurs when the moon is completely submerged in the umbra, and takes on a deep red hue because of light filtered through Earth's atmosphere.

Sometimes you just get lucky. Thanks to my family who went along with me for the experience, we went out onto a quiet country track and I was in the right spot at the right time. A few seconds after this image was taken the moon went totally behind cloud. My photography friends in my home town were completely clouded out and didn't get a shot at all! But evidently they had a spectacular sunset.  You can't win them all. I just wish I'd had a longer lens. Tripod absolutely essential.

The next total lunar eclipse takes place on Sept. 28, 2015. That comes shortly after a partial solar eclipse on Sept. 13, which will only be visible in Antarctica

For those that missed the lunar eclipse, you can see a video here - Shortest blood moon of the century

While we were waiting to see if the clouds were going to move my nephew and I played around with 30 seconds time lapse and the light from his mobile phone.  The totally black night conditions really helped with the success. What fun! I'd like to do some more of these shots.

Thank you so much for stopping by. I value your comments and look forward to hearing from you. I will try to visit your blogs in return. Have a wonderful week. 

I am linking up to the link-ups below. Please click on the links to see fabulous contributions from around the world - virtual touring at its best!

Mosaic Monday
Travel Photo Mondays
Our World Tuesday
Wednesday Around the World at Communal Global
Agent Mystery Case
What's It Wednesday
Travel Photo Thursday

Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Autumn arrives in Western Australia

Autumn has arrived in the south west of Western Australia. Although our Australian native trees are evergreen you can see autumn colour starting to appear in the imported tree varieties that are dotted throughout our towns and countryside.

On the weekend I celebrated the arrival of autumn by joining a water-colour workshop run by Marguerite Aberle at Lyndendale Gallery on Crooked Brook Road just out of Dardanup, about a half hour drive from my home. I had been promising myself to attend one of Marguerite's workshops for a couple of years, and what a joy it was to finally attend. The theme for the workshop was autumn colours.

Please click on "read more" to keep seeing and reading more

Monday, 23 March 2015

Continuing my 52-2 project

My regular readers may remember that in 2014 I completed a 365 project - one photo a day for a year. If you go to the link you can see my 2014 year in pictures - 365 project  It was a huge undertaking, but I found it hard to stop when the year ended so I embarked on a new project - 52-2. This is a project conducted through the Western Australian Photographic Federation and is encouraged by our local Photography Group of Bunbury. You can read more about it here - WAPF - 52-2 project

The brief for the project is to take two photos a week - one colour and one mono for 52 weeks. It is actually a great way to get into the habit of experimenting with mono images. I introduced my project to you on a blog post in early February - A new photography project for 2015 and I thought today I would bring you an update

Please click on "read more" to keep seeing and reading more