Capturing gratitude interview with Alex Kelly

by | Dec 30, 2012 | Uncategorized

Alex Kelly and I went to high school together, so we go WAY back!  After finishing year 12, we agreed to jump out of a plane together if Alex got the marks she wanted.  She did get the marks, but we chickened out (at least I did, maybe Alex forgot…. I’m not sure…. maybe I should keep quiet about it!).

We’ve kept in touch on and off since high school via facebook and chance encounters, and I’m really stoked she joined us in capturing gratitude, and agreed to an interview.

Here is Alex Kelly…..

Lauren: Tell me a bit about yourself.

Alex: I am a film maker and social change activist who works across arts and media. I am very lucky and get to travel and work with many amazing creative people through my projects. I’ve been based in the Central Australian desert for the last 9 years.

Lauren: Why did you decide to join capturing gratitude?

Alex: 2012 has been a year of much upheaval and change for me. This has triggered, as all good crisis does, much reflection and a desire to make some changes in my life. I am someone with loads of energy, I am always pretty busy and move quickly and I felt like I was missing things, that life was getting blurry. I thought this would be a way to slow down and notice more as well as be inspired by the gratitude that others were capturing.

Lauren: Tell me about one of the gratitude photographs you took during November for Capturing Gratitude.

Alex: November ended up being a very busy month for me with the launch of a film I made. I noticed when looking back at the photos that people feature most heavily in my focus of gratitude. Sure my 4WD, my swag, some amazing flowers, the sky, plants and weather did make it in there, but by and large I featured my friends, family and my nieces. As the month did focus so much on the film it’s really Starlady who stands out. I am so grateful for the access she gave me to her story, grateful to her for her strength to be herself and integrity in how she lives her life. I am also grateful for the opportunity to share her inspiring story with more people through film. This photo of the Wangaratta newspaper makes me incredibly happy. Front page of a paper in the small town where she grew up in country and experienced homophobia now honouring Starlady is a remarkable thing. I love these kind of ripples!

Lauren: How was this month for you?  Did photographing the things you were grateful for change your life in any small or not so small ways?

Alex: It was great to have the daily practice and the reminder of the practice through social media. I tend to be more disciplined at these kind of things if I am participating collectively rather than relying on just myself to stay on track! Photographing the things I was grateful for made me realise how diverse and full my life is – of wonderful and creative things, dress ups, parties, food, artists and great friends. That reflection has been powerful to hold in tandem with great loss and change this year.

Lauren: What role will gratitude play in your life from here on in?

Alex: I would like to make noticing things I am grateful for a daily practice, even if I don’t capture it with a photograph I still want to be sure I have noticed things to be grateful for, because there are so many! I had been reading a lot about gratitude, joy and neuroscience prior to taking part in capturing gratitude and the obvious benefits make it a practice I want to maintain. Thanks Lauren for the inspiration and the practice!


Lauren: Here’s your opportunity to share something close to your heart with, be it your business, your art, your poetry, your favourite cause or a charity.  The stage is yours……..

Alex: The stories we tell and share change the way we see ourselves and each other as witnessed by capturing gratitude! Keep telling & sharing stories!

Queen of the Desert film page on facebook and on the internet.
Gratitude pics on flickr.

Lauren: Thanks so much Alex.  I really enjoyed seeing and hearing about your journey with gratitude and re-connecting once again (and I loved watching your Queen of the Desert doco on ABC last month).

All photographs in this post were provided by Alex.

Next week I’ll be posting another capturing gratitude interview….. until then x


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