It was the first time Kristin Walsh had picked up her second-hand digital camera, but the photo she took of her son and his dad holding hands perfectly captured the candid moment.

Key points:

  • Photographer Kristin Walsh said she looks for details that are normally overlooked
  • Her photo of her son and his dad holding hands won Rural Aid’s inaugural bush photography competition
  • Trina Patterson, who placed third, said she takes photos as a way of staying positive in tough times

“I’m more about the detail of the shot, the little things that you forget about, so the size of the little hand in the big hand,” the amateur photographer said.

“The grittiness of the fingernails, all those little things that you don’t so much think about every day.

Ms Walsh, from Gerogery in the New South Wales Riverina, was one of 400 to answer the call for entries to Rural Aid’s inaugural photo competition, Spirit of the Bush, and she took out first place.

The charity’s CEO, John Warlters, said the competition was about highlighting the work of bush photographers that are doing it tough, particularly with COVID-19 travel restrictions.

‘Lucky to live out here’

As someone that lives close to the NSW-Victorian border, it is something Ms Walsh knows a lot about.

“I work across the border and we were not in the ‘bubble’ for most of the time,” she said.

“So we were basically in isolation constantly, apart from dropping my kids off to day care and going to work, that’s it.”

But it is life in the bush that has made the pandemic bearable.

“Every day I think we are so lucky to live out here where we are,” Ms Walsh said.

Trina Patterson said she takes photos to stay positive.(Supplied: Trina Patterson)

For the recipient of third place, Trina Patterson, from Rolleston in Queensland, taking photos is a way of focusing on the positive.

“If I could find something and try to capture it in a positive way, it was so good for my mindset. It was sort of like a photographic diary for me as well.

“It’s that creativity, positivity and the benefits of good mental health, that’s what I really get out of it.”

Ms Patterson said she thought her photo of a girl droving cattle epitomised the theme of the competition.

“I thought it was a beautiful and tender moment and that just encapsulated the spirit of the bush for me,” she said.

As for winner Kristin Walsh, she is encouraging every one to take a moment, to capture the moment.

Bunderra Cattle Co took out second place of Rural Aid’s inaugural Spirit of the Bush photo competition.(Supplied: Bunderra Cattle Co)

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