With each passing year, our Australian WWII Veterans slowly diminish in numbers. When I heard of the AIPPs (Australian Institute of Professional Photography) Reflections Project I knew I had to be a part of it.
An enormous logistic exercise, the objective of the Reflections project is to create sensitive portraits of our elderly WWII veterans for the purpose of establishing a unique historical documentation for our nation. All images will be archived with the Australian War Memorial in Canberra and each veteran also receives a commemorative print for their participation.
Over 5000 veterans Australia wide have had their portrait professionally taken since April 2015 by AIPP accredited professional photographers who volunteered their time and skills to the project.
There’s a special place in my heart for defence force personnel, an overwhelming sense of respect. It's what drove my decision to join the Army when I finished school, all those years ago. I am immensely proud of the AIPP for taking on the enormous task of seeking out and photographing our remaining WWII veterans.
For me it was a such a joy and honour. There is a humbling, pride and strength in our veterans that is special and unique. Their eyes change when they speak of their service, their mates, their regiment. It still amazes me how after all these years when asked for their service number (a detail needed in the administrative process) the information returned sharp and without doubt. It made me wonder if I would or could remember my service number in 50 years time.
A selection of the portraits I made as part of the Reflections project can be seen here.
Lest we forget.