Ruby In The Landscape – Windorah Red

There is something special about the outback and we loved our trip to Windorah this year.

Just a little red dog doing her thing in the outback!


“Windorah Red”       

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Ruby In The Landscape – Dune Frenzy

What is an Australian Kelpie, who lives in an urban townhouse, to do when she has the opportunity to explore a red sand dune in the outback?

Why………stick her nose in the sand and go crazy……..of course!

A cow grazes peacefully in the background.

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“Dune Frenzy”       © Sue Thomson 2015

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Ruby In The Landscape – Queen Of The Outback

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“Queen Of The Outback”       © Sue Thomson 2015

There is something about the Australian outback that is addictive.

Dry cracked red earth, endless vistas, spectacular wildlife and pubs in remote towns that always have a cold beer.

We are just home from a trip to Windorah, which is located in the heart of the Channel Country, approximately 1200km west of Brisbane.  Windorah is surrounded by red sand hills and is a great spot to overnight before heading out on the road to Birdsville.

Ruby enjoyed the red dirt and will be back again soon!

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The Ladies of Louth

Two lone figures appeared on the horizon like a mirage.  As I drove closer to them along the insanely red dirt road, I could see that they were wearing fly veils and one was carrying dumb bells.

Feeling adventurous, I had ventured off the black-top to travel the unsealed Darling River Run and had travelled more than 100km from Bourke.  I had not seen any other cars and was enjoying the vista of the red earth country and a land springing to life after recent rain.  The appearance of the odd emu, kangaroo and wild goats kept me on my toes as wildlife are a little bit unpredictable when grazing and moving around near the outback roads.

At first, I thought the ladies may have broken down, but the dumb bells had me intrigued.  I pulled up and had a chat to the lovely Clare and Margaret and they told me that they lived at the little town of Louth just up the road.  They had both embarked on a health mission and were out walking to get fit.

To say I was surprised was an understatement.  But life is like that in the country and the outback.  Folks don’t have access to big fancy gyms, they make the most of what they have, and despite the trillions of flies, they were out enjoying the land and each other’s company.

They were pretty chuffed when I asked if I could photograph them, as I was to meet such interesting ladies in the middle of nowhere.

Louth is a small town with a population of under 50 which swells to thousands when they host their annual race meeting.  I called into the pub to refuel and enjoyed looking at the wonderful memorabilia located inside the pub whilst I waited for my hearty bacon and egg burger to cook.

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“The Ladies of Louth”       © Sue Thomson 2014

I received some very good advice from the ladies of Louth… a fly veil when you get to Broken Hill….and I did!

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Ruby In The Landscape – The Mad Max Dog

The town of Silverton in New South Wales, Australia is an outback town with such classic desert appeal that it has perhaps become the most famous movie location in Australia.  Iconic films such as Mad Max II (known as Road Warrior in USA), Dirty Deeds, Mission Impossible II, The Missing, Priscilla, Queen of the Desert, Reckless Kelly, Razorback, The Slim Dusty Movie, Hostage and A Town Like Alice (mini-series) have all been filmed in and around Silverton.

This was an important destination on our recent outback trip, and as we drove in to Silverton on the first morning for a sunrise shoot, I could sense Ruby’s excitement was growing.  You see, I think she has dreams of being a movie star one day.  We arrived at the Mad Max 2 Museum and Ruby immediately got into the spirit of this awesome movie and strutted her inner feral dog.

Feel free to share this blog and image with any big-name movie screen writers who might be thinking of writing a Mad Max sequel and might be in need of a dog like Ruby.  Her modelling training is coming along well and at this stage, her fee is modest.  Her handler is probably expensive though 🙂

The Mad Max Dog

“The Mad Max Dog”       © Sue Thomson 2014

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Ruby In The Landscape – The Non Musical Kelpie

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“The Non Musical Kelpie”   © Sue Thomson 2013

Ruby had no interest in learning to play the musical instruments at Winton.

She did however, love the wide open spaces and red dust of ‘jump up’ country.  Winton is a unique outback Queensland town, located approximately 1500 kilometres from Brisbane.

The Musical Fence was designed by percussionist and composer Graeme Leak and is a wire fence that can be played as a musical instrument.  It is possibly the first permanent musical fence installation in the world.

Ruby, an Australian Kelpie, is now seven months old and is loving urban life in Brisbane.

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Ruby In The Landscape – Cunnamulla

The international model Linda Evangelista once famously said that she doesn’t get out of bed to work for less than $10 000 which is pretty impressive.  At the other end of the scale, I have a new photography assistant who is very low maintenance and is happy to do a spot of modelling for a pat and a piece of roast beef.

I am excited to launch my new personal project which brings together two of my favourite things, my little kelpie puppy Ruby, and my love of photographing landscapes.  We will be travelling to many new places,  and hopefully over time, creating some amazing images together.

Our first image comes to you from  Charlotte Plains Station, which is located 50km from Cunnamulla in South West Queensland.


Charlotte Plains Station is an authentic working sheep and cattle station (half the size of Singapore) and provides an opportunity to experience the real outback and more.  There are lots of interesting things to explore on the station but my favourite was having a dip in the relaxing hot bore water which is enriched by minerals.

We camped right next to the artesian bore and it was hot, dry, dusty and fabulously quiet.  We saw emus, kangaroos (by the hundreds), goats, camels, galahs, pelicans, herons and of course plenty of sheep and cattle.

I was very thankful for Ruby’s impressive barking effort which thwarted off the interest of a wild pig circling our tent on the last night of our stay as my Bear Gryll’s effort of shining a torch from the inside of the tent had no effect.  I could understand the pig’s curiousity as our tent is pretty flash.  We travel in style in an Oztent which I can put up on my own in less than 30 seconds.

Meet Ruby

Ruby is a six month old Callicoma kelpie bred by Mandy Sansom in Grafton.   Ruby is chocolate in colour and whilst officially a New South Wales gal by origin, she now resides in Brisbane and is a proudly adopted Queenslander.

Being a working dog, she loves to run, cant get enough of fetching a ball, and is a pretty chilled city girl, having perfected the art of being a lounge lizard during the day whilst her mum is at work.

Ruby has graduated from Puppy Pre-School and Basic Obedience.

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Woof woof…..see you on the next job!

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