Darren Stones

Winner of the 2008 Grenfell Henry Lawson Festival of Arts Bronze Statuette for photography.

Whenever I think of Grenfell, I recall great memories of the 2008 Grenfell Henry Lawson Festival of Arts. It was an exciting time for me as I was judged winner of the bronze statuette for photography. I will never forget the phone call I received from the festival’s photography exhibition coordinator Tim Wood informing me of my win. His genuine warmth shone through right from our first contact on the phone.

That phone call instilled a sense of excitement in me. It lifted me in fact and gave me inspiration. I remember being so excited that I went straight to my parents place after Tim’s call and telling them of my win. Mum began crying tears of happiness because she was so happy for me. I have had images published in guidebooks, magazines, on websites, and licensed images, and sold products nationally and internationally to clients, but the whole experience I had at Grenfell in 2008 during the Queen’s Birthday weekend ranks above all achievements and experiences I have had in photography.

Tim kindly invited me to attend the exhibition and dinner and I truly felt humbled and excited. To me it was a big deal. Tim and his wife Amy welcomed me warmly when I arrived in Grenfell as if I was a close friend. They treated me as a special guest and we have kept in contact ever since.

They were special moments I was experiencing and those memories of 2008 remain vivid to this day.

I attended many exhibitions and festivities during the 2008 festival and I can honestly say it has left an indelible mark on me as a truly great Australiana festival. The locals were fantastic to meet and the hospitality I experienced in Grenfell was genuinely friendly. As a participant in the photography exhibition, I felt I was an important part of the success of the festival and it was an honour to have my works displayed to festival attendees.

The sheer amount of voluntary work that goes into organising all parts of a festival is enormous. The people of Grenfell should be very proud and hold their heads high because of what they present to fellow Australians. The Grenfell Henry Lawson Festival of Arts is a brilliant festival that allows people from near and far to come together to celebrate the arts and enjoy one another’s company. Great people and great hospitality is the basis for conducting such a great festival – Grenfell has it in spades.

Winner of the 2008 Winning Image, Henry Lawson Festival, Grenfell Bronze Statuette for photography.

To contact Darren or to view his website please go to: www.darrenstones.com.au