In late 2017 Magpie Goose commissioned the recently formed Kalumuburu Photograph Collective (KPC) for a selection of images showcasing Magpie Goose's first range.
Since 2015, Enterprise Learning Projects' WA team, Clare and Susannah, have been helping the Kalumburu women explore enterprise as a way of making money, sharing culture, and learning new skills- and photography has been a real interest. Fresh off the back of a successful calendar featuring KPC photos, Clare and WA photographer Freedom Garvey headed up to Kalumburu to work with the women on the fashion photography brief from Magpie Goose!
We asked two of the photographers - Maria Maraltadj and Maria Fredericks some questions about how it all happened:
The shoot took place over three days at sites around Kalumburu.
These photos were taken at the workshop where there's nice tin walls and old petrol pumps.
These photos were taken at Turtle Gallery where there's beautiful rock art.
These photos were taken at the old kitchen and bakery buildings where the women used to bake bread for the community during the mission days.
On the last day there was a shoot with three babies at the the Kalumburu Strong Women’s Centre where lots of people helped out to try and get the babies to smile, look at the camera or stay still.
'The weather was really hot and on the day of the baby shoot the wind got strong and there was thunder and lightening so it was hard to keep the babies happy! Lots of grandmothers and aunties helped out.' - Maria M
"I had a lot of fun taking photos of the babies, trying to keep them happy when the storm was coming, everyone jumped when that thunder" - Maria M.
The photographers got into some modelling (because why would you just be on one side of the camera!?), and also asked young women in the community who they thought would be brave enough to model or may fit the Magpie Goose clothes. The four young women were all friends of Maria Maratadj, so this made the women really comfortable at the shoot.
The women say they learnt a lot from the project
‘I learnt how to get a better fashion shot by watching Freedom, by looking at the angles to make sure the clothes looked good’- Maria M
‘ I got confident directing models and making them smile'- Maria M.
'I liked taking images of the models sitting on the rocks at turtle gallery in the bush, I learnt from Freedom whatever position you see the model in and if you like it catch it capture it in an image' - Maria F
And are excited to continue their photography:
'I just like taking photos, I like what I do, I dream of going to back to my country and take pictures, I'm from Kingana' - Maria F.
'I like to do some family portraits and find their stories to share, a whole group of a family, and little ones and learn their stories.' - Maria F
‘I want to share my photos on Instagram and facebook to make my family proud’- Maria M
'I feel great that other people like my photos'- Maria F
And they'd love to work with Magpie Goose again in the future. There might even be a textile design workshop on the cards...watch this space!
'I’d love to take more photos of Magpie Goose clothes, my grandmother, Domo would love to design clothes for Magpie Goose.’- Maria M.
'I like to learn screen printing, and have clothes up for sale, I'd like Kalumburu stories on fabric, I reckon the young women would feel good about it (wearing kalumburu designs)' - Maria F