The Broken Creek

John Donegan
event-detail-image
John Donegan
This event has concluded
Dates: -
Location: Stanley Street Gallery 1/52-54 Stanley St Darlinghurst NSW 2010 Australia
Hours:
Entry Fee: Free
Genres: Fine-Art, Landscape

Photojournalism was the perfect career for my madness.

The chaos of the newsroom allowed me to thrive.

My mania would conjure up ridiculous projects and I would work day and night to complete them.

Alternatively, I remember telling myself, when I was down, to just shoot through it.

I learned about mindfulness in hospitable and it turns out that every time I picked up a camera I was practicing mindfulness: Grounded; in the moment; outward looking.

After I left full-time photojournalism, my madness ground me down slowly, crushingly, until I could not live with it any longer.

During this period the worst place for me to be was alone and resulted in many poor life choices.

Now, diagnosed and appropriately medicated, being alone is a joy. A joy I am reacquainting myself with after a 35 year hiatus.

I sit in the bush around the Broken Creek and allow it to reveal itself to me: Different in each hour, different in each season, all various moods of the same being.

My recovery has required me to confront the traumas buried in the shadows of my life; to be vulnerable; to embrace the full gamut of emotions that I once shielded myself from.

The Broken Creek represents a change in subject matter that mirrors my changed mental state: Peaceful, contemplative, with a myriad of detail in the deepest shadows.

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John Donegan was moved as a child to observe the minutiae of suburban life by the writings of Australian authors like David Malouf and George Johnston whose ability to turn a tram journey; a bike ride or a swim into something magical was an inspiration.

He sold his first photograph to a newspaper aged 14 and still pinches himself everyday that photography provides him with a living 40 years later.

John grew up in suburban Melbourne but his career has taken him to live on three continents, visit 20 countries, and to have lived in three Australian states. He is constantly humbled by the access into people’s lives he is afforded simply by dint of his photography.

John began his professional career as a cadet photographer at The Herald and Weekly Times in Melbourne in 1985 where he was promoted to Sport Photographer of The Herald at the age of 21.

In 1988, John relocated to London where he worked as a stringer for The Evening Standard, Associated Press, The Express, The Sunday Correspondent et al.

John moved to Jerusalem in 1991 on a retainer for The Guardian and stringing for Associated Press covering Jerusalem, West Bank and Gaza.

Returning to Australia, John returned to the now-merged Herald Sun as a photographer and took over as Picture Editor in 1996. John won two Walkley Awards for his photography whilst at the Herald Sun.

John joined The Age in 1998 taking over as Picture Editor of The Sunday Age in 1999 and moving to the role of Chief Sport Photographer in 2006.

John moved to Sydney in 2009 for personal reasons, taking on the role of primary carer of his three young children. During this period he served on the Walkley Advisory Board and as a judge and curator for the Head On Photo Festival.

In 2012, John broke new ground as a multimedia reporter for radio station 702 ABC Sydney providing photography and reporting for the station’s website and live reporting on air.

John remains as enthused and energised by photography today as he was on the 19 August 1985 when he walked nervously through the brass and glass doors of The Herald & Weekly Times and, after 35 years as a photojournalist, he has turned his camera to the native landscapes around the water ways of Yorta Yorta country.

This event has concluded
Dates: -
Location: Stanley Street Gallery 1/52-54 Stanley St Darlinghurst NSW 2010 Australia
Hours:
Entry Fee: Free
Genres: Fine-Art, Landscape

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