The motivation for Our PhotoStories is to help create a sense of community through photography and collaboration. By bringing a photography project into lives and towns, I hope to empower people with a creative way to engage with their surroundings and each other, both in person and online. The aim is that a virtual community is developed through the sharing of photos and stories, which will continue to thrive after the each project is complete, creating a sense of connection and creative companionship across great distances.
Astrid Volzke is a photographer who loves to capture stories and real emotion. The character and atmosphere of people and place. Working as a press photographer for 9 years at the West Australian Newspaper has shaped her documentary style of photography. Astrid uses her knowledge of visually capturing stories plus her versatility in documenting people from all walks of life and all situations to inspire others to push the boundaries of their photography skills and experience. Astrid spent many years in Perth but now lives on a farm in Moodiarrup, Western Australia and is part of the West Arthur community.
"What a wonderful project Our Photo Stories is. I thoroughly enjoyed your workshop in Hopetoun, one of the best I have ever attended. Your passion, knowledge and enthusiasm (plus encouragement!) have obviously inspired so many people. Those awesome postings on Facebook are a testament to your skill and ability to motivate people from all communities" - Kay Wilson, Hopetoun
"You have inspired me so much... I don’t leave home without my camera now! We start our main lambing soon and I am hoping to be lucky enough to capture a ewe lambing.. I am thinking that it will make a great photo story" - Helen Burton - Jerdacttup
"Astrid made it super easy for everyone to learn how to tell a story using photos (from beginners to pros - everyone took something new away). She supported and guided us the entire time to create something special, even when she wasn't in town she was only ever a message away!" - Emily Cole, Broome
"Such a brilliant organisation and initiative!" - Bec Bignall, Rural Room
“Astrid was inspirational to work with as her passion for photo stories is contagious and she encouraged everyone involved in the project to really dig into what they wanted to produce both technically and on a personal level. The stories made for the West Arthur Photo Stories Exhibition were such wonderful representations of what we all love and live for. Astrid is a passionate photographer who effortlessly inspires workshop participants to really immerse themselves in the Photo Story journey.” - Karen Prowse - Manager, West Arthur Community Resource Centre
"For those out there in the bush, this is an amazing project! Astrid has done so much with her photography & it is wonderful to see her skills, talent & creativity being shared with communities that often miss out due to their remoteness. A city girl with a country heart & love of a good story, am sure this project is going to be a blast" - Julie-Anne Buck
"Your photos and blog bring me such joy! I absolutely love the photo stories and how they paint such a vivid story of life in rural WA" - Shannon Wood (Collie, WA).
"I love the human aspect of your photos Astrid...the expressions and the stories they tell are just amazing" - Roslyn Ruland
“Your photo’s are spot on Astrid. They always capture the soul of wherever you are.” - Vicki Lee
"If you feel safe in the area you’re working in, you’re not working in the right area. Always go a little further into the water than you feel you’re capable of being in. Go a little bit out of your depth. And when you don’t feel that your feet are quite touching the bottom, you’re just about in the right place to do something exciting"