The Elysium Arctic expedition is at the intersection of Fiona’s three lifetime passions and work: science, travel and documenting change.
After studying pure math, she moved into a career in travel, running a successful travel businesses in Australia, but always taking full advantage of the opportunities that it provided to journey to all continents and capture and communicate her experiences. During this period she also fell in love with the marine world through diving and sailing.
The joy of capturing unusual aspects of the natural world came from an unlikely source – in 1994 a massive bushfire destroyed her home in the Garigal National Park in Sydney and also burned the whole Peninsula of dense Sandstone Heath forest. During the days, months and years that followed, Fiona explored the formerly inaccessible areas of the
peninsula to observe and record the beauty of a regenerating environment. This exploration and photo documentation, now 20 years in the making, is a mix of scientific and purely aesthetic imagery of the astonishing visual diversity of regeneration in this environment.
In more recent times, Fiona was able to retire from the commercial side of travel and spend more time on both sailing and study, completing a Bachelor of Biomedical Science and exploring the Barrier Reef and islands on her yacht Kalosini II. While much of her time is now spent traveling, she is also involved in landcare initiatives restoring native rainforest areas around her home base, a rural 10 hectares in the Blackall Ranges in Queensland.
While the Arctic biota and landscapes are far removed from the rainforest and sandstone heath areas where she has done most of her work, they are an exciting new canvas for her visual themes of regeneration, diversity and macro/micro scale.