Photography is in Lisbeth Westra’s nature, and nature is in her photography.
The Moruya resident arrived in Australia from her native Denmark in 2004, and it marked a turning point which would lead to her winning prizes for her work.
“I had always loved photography, and I bought my first digital camera before I left Denmark,” she said.
She first settled in Canberra with Australian husband Tom, and was inspired by her surroundings.
“I noticed all these different flowers and discovered all these birds,” she said.
“I find the nature here beautiful.”
She moved to Moruya in early 2012 and joined the Eurobodalla Photographic Club.
“At first you do photography for yourself, and then you want to show others,” she said.
“I have an account on (photo sharing website) Flickr and this allows me to talk to other people and be inspired by their work.”
Lisbeth always has her camera ready in case a good photographic subject presents itself.
“Sometimes I will stop the car to photograph a great egret (bird),” she said.
She also takes landscape photos around the Eurobodalla, especially where the shore meets the sea.
“The best times are sunrise and sunset,” she said.
“Sometimes it is hard to get out of bed but that’s when you get the best photos.”
One of her favourite subjects is Mullenderee Creek north Moruya, of which she has taken stunning portraits, although it is a “bit dried out at the moment”.
She has taken photos at the Eurobodalla Regional Botanic Gardens so good that four of them were chosen for the gardens’ 2014 calendar.
Fur seals on the Narooma rock wall have also been among her subjects, but her favourites are still birds and flowers.
Lisbeth first entered her work in the Eurobodalla Show in 2013 and was named most successful exhibitor in the novice section.
She easily topped this at the 2014 Eurobodalla Show, winning first prize in the Eurobodalla scene, seascape, landscape, birds and single flower categories.
She also won second prize in the action scenes, for photos she took of bull riding at the Moruya Rodeo, as well as the black and white and sunrise categories.
She concedes she still has a long way to go to be the photographer she wants to be.
“I am a member of the Australian Photographic Society and I have put photos in their competitions,” she said.
“I haven’t won anything yet and I’ve still got lots to learn.”