Brighter | 1

text & photography by Robert Catto

When I first came to Australia fifteen years ago, it was partly because of what a friend at school in Canada had said to me: “I don’t know how to describe it, but the colours are brighter there.”

It’s true, certainly - the sun here does seem to cut more, to shine harder; but also the birds, plants and flowers that have grown here are more colourful than those in my home land of pine trees, pink granite and lakes.

And it seemed to me that the people had taken that on - had made their cities, cars and houses more colourful. Themselves, too.

Moving back here from New Zealand, after fifteen years in a country whose national colour is black, I’m reminded again why I felt that way. The light itself is similar to New Zealand’s; but the brightness is somehow, to me, Australian.

This is part one of what will be an ongoing project for me, as I test my friend’s statement. Some chapters may push back against the theory, others will propel it further - but I’ll be interested to see which side wins!