SHELTER: How Australians Live - By Design Files

SHELTER: How Australians Live - By Design Files

Book Review - Shelter

SHELTER: How Australians Live is Kara’s love letter to the Australian countryside, and the unique people and places she has found on her extensive travels – from rural Tasmania to Australia’s Red Centre, and everywhere in between..

Shelter nz


Shelter Book Aus

We have long been fans of Brisbane based photographer and stylist Kara Rosenlund. Kara is a unique creative – yes, she has a distinctive style, she’s known for her richly layered, rustic interiors – but honestly, what I find most inspiring about Kara is but her incredible drive. This is a woman who lets nothing stand in the way of realising even the most ambitious creative ideas.

Kara’s first book is perhaps the greatest example of her intense optimism and work ethic in practice. ‘Shelter, How Australians Live’ is Kara’s meandering love letter to Australian country interiors of all kinds. Within these pages are spaces you’ve never seen before… and there’s a reason for that. Quite simply, they’ve never been documented. So how did Kara find and capture all these incredible homes? Well, that’s all part of her magic!

In order to fill these pages, Kara spent just over year on the most epic Australia-wide solo road trip. Her itinerary was loose and unstructured – ‘I simply followed a conversation around the country, like a bush telegraph’ Says Kara. One person would say, ‘Oh, Kara, you must visit my cousin in Tasmania, she has a great hut’, so she would go, and then from there she might be told about a homestead in the red dust of central Queensland, and again, she would follow the conversation. ‘There was no structure or strategy, it was an adventure, never knowing exactly where I would end up next.’ says Kara.

Inevitably, such a unique approach had resulted in the most wonderfully unique book. We really LOVE THIS BOOK. It’s an absolute beauty.

Kara, tell us a little bit about your book – how did the concept first come about?

I spend a lot of time on the road as a photographer, and I’m always looking out the car window. I wanted to celebrate the authentic Australian interiors and landscapes which I love so much, in all their faded, crumbling, rambling ways.

Australia really is very exotic, and I think we have forgotten how striking our landscapes are, and what a unique lifestyle this country offers the people who live and listen to the landscape.

What can we expect to see in Shelter?

You can expect a lot of emotional imagery, and an Australia which you may not have seen before. I wanted the emotion of the homes to pour out from the pages.

Because I was travelling the country alone, it was an emotional time for me personally and I captured the interiors and the landscapes from an emotional perspective, how they spoke to me at that time. No styling, no lighting, just real, authentic people and places.

Who was one of the most memorable people you met whilst making the book?

Shelter really was built on the generosity and spirit from the advice from strangers. Each person contributed in different ways to helping me, which I’m truly so grateful for.

If there was one person who’s lifestyle set a tone, it would have to be artist Luke Sciberras’ home in country NSW.

What are you looking forward to?

So much more…. I haven’t even begun! I would love to be able to do another book but on a global scale – ‘Shelter, how the world lives’!

I am also working on my photographic prints series to sell in my print shop… maybe even a TV show…!?  I’m not sure, but whatever comes my way you can be sure it will be the real deal!

Photos and text by The Design Files


Shelter Photos NZ

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