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  • Writer's pictureHayley Roberts

The making of ‘Where She Wanders’

Updated: Nov 19, 2023

When I was small we lived in a house that backed onto undeveloped land and so the neighbourhood kids and I would grab our bikes and head off exploring, making up creation stories and brushing shoulders with snakes and wild brumbies.

When I was a teenager we lived in a house that backed onto rainforest and so my friends and I would head off exploring, climbing mountains and swimming in undiscovered waterfalls.

Perhaps because of these experiences or perhaps because a part or me is just a little bit ‘wild’, these days whenever I’m driving through the country I feel the urge to ditch my car and run off into the wilderness to befriend the animals and be at one with nature. But I’m not much of a camping fan and I really hate the cold so I have to quell my Disney-esque urges and just keep driving. Instead I decorate my house in a style that can only be called ‘woodlands’ as evidenced by this peek at one of my bookshelves.

Woodlands Bookshelf

Mind the mess – perhaps I should have dusted first …

But this is why I love creating photographic art. Because now I can be the girl who wanders the forest wooing the flora and fauna, and yet still stay warm and dry.

‘Where She Wanders’ is the first image in the two part ‘Wildflower’ series. The second will be released in coming weeks. Trying to match the colours of the two images while still making each scene look realistic has been immensely challenging and has taken me nearly two months to complete, the longest I’ve ever worked on a piece, and most of that was just spent refining colour.

A woodlands inspired fine art print

The poses for the images were photographed in my studio (backyard). The background bamboo scene was photographed in Japan at Tenryuji Temple gardens in Arashiyama and the deer in Nara Park. The grass came from Stonehenge and the birds from Notre Dame in France as trained by the fabulous Bird Man. The flowers came from a number of different locations after much experimentation to find those that fit.

It shall have pride of place among my woodslandy decor, acting as a reminder to always nuture wildness.

Where She Wanders print by Hayley Roberts Photography

“Like a wild flower; she spent her days, allowing herself to grow, not many knew of her struggle, but eventually all; knew of her light.” – Nikki Rowe

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