Next events, previous events & office opening hours

Normally….when there’s no pandemic around…

  • Discuss what you’d like & book early, to avoid disappointment – there’s only often time for one event per month.
  • Some engagements are listed below while there’s others awaiting confirmation before being made public. *Note, of course due to Covid19, event arrangements are being altered by organisers, as the situation progresses.
  • You receive personal service as I have no staff. If I’m taking photographs for you or you’re attending a workshop, you have my undivided attention.
  • Remote area & overseas travel can also mean I’m hard to catch when out & about – there’s info on how to contact me when travelling, down the bottom of this page.

Events we could cross paths at & dates out of the office:

2020:

The first in-person event after the March COVID19 lockdown! Very exciting:

  • 2 day drone & aerial photography workshop, a Rural Academy event; hosted by the Quilpie Cultural Association & funded by Queensland’s Regional Arts Development Fund (RADF) and also the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA). Runs 25-26 July. (I’ll be away 23 – 28 July, perhaps longer – exact away dates TBA). More detail on the Quilpie drone workshop; and details of what is covered in drone workshops, visit the Rural Drone Academy blog post
  • Numbers are limited so if you’re interested in this workshop I recommend booking ASAP. Because a) these drone workshops are unique, Australia-wide. So participants travel long distances to attend (more than 1,000km, in some instances) & b) this is the first drone workshop after more than 4 months of enforced social isolation, so participants are likely to be keener and book earlier!
  • There has been some good rain around the Quilpie region, this year, so it should be looking a picture. Quilpie is on the way to Birdsville, for anyone approaching from the East – a great year for a good roam around!
  • For more details, don’t hesitate to contact Fiona Lake.

Rural Drone Academy training covers the A to Z of everything a drone pilot needs to know in order to fly safely, productively and enjoyably. Drone workshops are based on a wealth of drone and small business experience, with agricultural, rural and professional photography knowledge informing the additional topics offered.

Later in 2020:

  • Tentative plan – drone workshop, Townsville – a full day, A to Z of everything a drone pilot needs to know to fly safely, legally, productively and enjoyably. Tentative date – Sept or Oct 2020; details TBC.
  • Australian conference – Nov (postponed from Sept; exact dates away TBA)
  • PLUS – commercial photography trips, sprinkled throughout – as permitted.
  • (Three 2020 overseas trips to talk at drone conferences, cancelled)

2020 POSTPONED, CANCELLED, SUBSTANTIALLY ALTERED (not all listed here):

By January I had drone events and photography commission work lined up for every month of 2020, right up until Christmas. Including 3 overseas work trips. Some of the engagements cancelled or postponed, from April onwards:

  • POSTPONED INDEFINITELY: March trip to the US & Canada; drone-related training
  • CANCELLED: Commission photography in North Queensland, March – May.
  • POSTPONED INDEFINITELY: Freelance photography, Gulf Country (Qld) – early April
  • CANCELLED: Commission photography, NT/Far Western Qld – mid May
  • POSTPONED INDEFINITELY: (originally scheduled for March, then June, then cancelled); South West Queensland; Thargomindah, Noorama, Morven, Quilpie – Introduction to drones in agriculture workshops
  • POSTPONED INDEFINITELY: Townsville City Library, North Qld – 2 drone & aerial photography workshops plus author talk (during Townsville City Council’s July ‘Festival of Stories’) 14-18 July
  • CANCELLED ATTENDANCE:  InterDrone Texas (USA)- was to be speaking on 2 panels and on a trade stand. Conference originally to run 18-20 August then rescheduled for 15-17 December 2020. Withdrawn from speaking due to the low likelihood of Australian travel to the US/risk of much higher airfares/virus risk in the US.
  • CONFERENCE NOW ONLINE ONLY: Commercial UAV Expo Europe, Speaking on drones in agriculture. Conference was to run 1-3 December 2020, in conjunction with Amsterdam Drone Week.

POSTPONED UNTIL 2021:

  • WAS TO BE 1-2 MAY 2020; POSTPONED UNTIL 2021: Broken Hill Agfair, Western NSW; drone in agriculture & mobile phone photography workshops, in conjunction with the RFDS. Dates away, 30 April – 4 May.
  • WAS TO BE 17-18 JUNE 2020 POSTPONED UNTIL 20201: AUS conference at Rotortech, Brisbane – 15-17 June (dates away TBC); presentation on drone use in Australian agriculture (rescheduled date, from 17-18 June 2020, then rescheduled again from 15-16 October 2020)
  • WAS TO BE FEBRUARY 2021, NOW NOVEMBER 2021: Avalon Airshow, Geelong (Victoria); centenary of the Royal Australian Airforce

Some of the most recent events etc attended (& office closures):

2020:

  • Online soon: Farms Advice podcast, interview with Jack Creswell
  • Online – 50th Dronemasters Meetup – online event, midnight 3 June to 2am 4 June (based in Canada); seven speakers on drones from around the world – Germany, UK, Ghana, USA plus myself.  (Not recorded; only broadcast live)
  • Online – Cynthia Mahoney & Associates ‘Wellbeing Wednesday’ interview, 6 May (hour long, session recorded with participant Q & A session)
  • Online – The Drone Trainer Podcast, ‘Tourism & Agricultural Drone Photography’ interview, March (hour long, pre-recorded session) (based in Canada)
  • Commission drone photography, Western Queensland, mid March
  • Wandoan Photo Challenge, Southern Qld –  late March; judged the photography entries again this year, delighted to be asked again! Luckily – online, not in person. This is the best-run rural photography competition in Australia, as far as I know.  But – the images must have been taken within a 100km radius of Wandoan. Lucky locals! Other photography competition organisers would do well to read the Wandoan T & C.
  • Commission drone photography, Far North Qld/Gulf – 5 – 10 March
  • Sarina (North Qld) – 29 Feb; Rural Academy training – Introduction to drones workshop, full day; plus Sarina school talk (away 28 Feb – 1 March). Sponsored by the Bendigo Community Bank.
  • Rockhampton region (Central Qld); commission photography; 18-22 February.
  • January; limited work hours due to illness; & reduced computer hours due to major system upgrade (not completed until early February).

2019:

  • Far North Queensland; commission photography – away 16 Dec to 19 Dec (home just in time to mail book orders for pre-Christmas delivery)
  • Queensland Rural Press Club Christmas function (Brisbane) for the annual photography award presentation, then Victoria for MLA commission photography; away 5 – 12 December.
  • Interrupted work hours & travel in November, due to a family member’s illness & recovery.
  • Melbourne (Victoria) – away 8 – 10 November
  • Innamincka (South Australia) Rural Academy training – ag drone workshop, RFDS wellness weekend – away 1-4 November.
  • Department of Agriculture & Fisheries, Innisfail (Far North Queensland) commercial photography – away 22-23 October.
  • Marcus Oldham agricultural college, Geelong (Vic) – Rural Academy training – ag drone talk for farm management students; away 15 -17 Oct.
  • World of Drones Congress, Brisbane (SE Queensland) – 26-27 Sept (away 20-27 Sept); presented a talk on drones in agriculture – current reality vs myths, and predictions.
  • RAPAD Outback AeroDrone Symposium, Barcaldine (CW Queensland) – 21-23 September (away 20-27 Sept); Rural Academy training – presented a half-day aerial photography masterclass.
  • Cobb & Co Festival, Surat (Southern Qld), 23-25 Aug (away 22 – 26 Aug). A commemoration of the last Cobb & Co Coach run in Australia – 95 years ago. Australian agriculture was founded on the sweat & loyalty of hard working horses and I love to see respect being paid to them. So I especially enjoyed being part of recognising this vital part of Australia’s inland history, and taking drone images.  I look forward to the next Cobb & Co Festival, the centenary – in 2024.
  • IRELAND & UK FARM TOUR:  16 July – 10 Aug 2019 (away 15 July – 17 Aug).  Ireland, Wales, England & Scotland; during the height of Britain’s summer – I escorted 25 farmers around a huge diversity of highlights – agricultural and otherwise. This particular tour had three unique features. 1) an unusual number of opportunities to converse with a large diversity of locals involved in agriculture, sometimes over lunch or dinner; 2) more events visited than any other farm tour & 3) Professional-standard photographs to remind everyone of their journey highlights. More details on this fantastic farm tour of Ireland and the UK on this blog page. Don’t hesitate to contact me by phone (07 4728 4922) or email if you have any queries regarding future tours, or you would like to subscribe to my Overseas Farm Tour newsletter.

One of the unique aspects of the 2019 UK & Ireland farm tour – the number of events and special occasions included in the itinerary. British Isles shows are still focused on agriculture and very traditional.

  • Atherton Tablelands & Cairns (Far North Queensland) – away 6-8 July.
  • The 3rd Drone World Congress, 2019 –  run by the World UAV Federation, Shenzhen, China. Plus 2 other drone events; Nanjing & Huizhou. 19-24 June (away 17 – 25 June). Presented a talk on drones in Australian agriculture, & innovative ways to increase uptake – at the conferences in Shenzhen & Nanjing.
  • NQ Dry Tropics – mobile phone photography workshops (in house), 13 & 14 June; Townsville & Ayr (North Queensland)
  • Blackall Cultural Association 2 day drone photography masterclass, Blackall (Central Western Queensland) 8-9 June. (Away 6 -10 June)  Rural Academy training, funded by RADF & the Blackall-Tambo Regional Council.
  • Pooncarie Field Day (Western NSW), 4 May (away 5-6 May) – Rural Academy training; presentation on using drones on farms & stations.
  • Commercial UAV Expo, Europe (Amsterdam, Netherlands); 8-10 April 2019 (away 2 April to 25 April). Presented on drones in agriculture plus involved in a roundtable discussion. Also Belgium, France, UK.
  • Wandoan Photography Challenge, South East Queensland, late March – delighted to judge this great regional photography competition in 2019. I judged it from home rather than on the spot, but mention it here as it’s a great annual opportunity for photographers within a 100km radius of Wandoan to win very generous prize money and see their work recognised.
  • Australian International Airshow & Aerospace & Defence Exposition, Avalon Airport, Victoria; 1-3 March 2019 (away 28 Feb – 11 March); plus commercial photography in northern Victoria & Tasmania. Avalon Airshow is the most comprehensive air show in the southern hemisphere and 2019 included the drone showcase. I was invited to present an introduction to drones in agriculture session. I love aviation so enjoyed it immensely, & hope to return in 2021!
  • Tintern Old Girls Association – presentation at the AGM, along with fellow former boarder & now film producer, Fiona Eagger. 6 March.
  • Late January to early February – floods in Townsville; interrupted postal and other services, apologies for delays.
  • Austrade lunch, Brisbane – away 30 January.
  • Commercial photography, Top End (NT) & Kimberley (WA); away 11 January until 21 January.

2018:

  • “ANZ Smart Farms & Ag Tech” forum at the Sydney Convention Centre (Darling Harbour); 3-5 December (away 2 – 8 Dec). Presented on ‘Drones – sorting fact from fiction, plus predictions’; and on a panel session re ‘Thinking outside the box – to boost ag tech adoption’.
  • “Introduction to Drones” Rural Drone Academy, full day training, Townsville, 10th Nov. A feast of useful content, all day, worth travelling to attend. Townsville drone workshop information.  An independently run event.
  • Commission photography for JBS Australia, southern Victoria; 29 October – 2 November.
  • Far North Queensland, 2-5 Oct; commercial photography.
  • InterDrone – Las Vegas. 5-7 September 2018 (dates away; 3 Sept to 17 Sept). I ran a workshop titled ‘Maximising still photography results’ – based on 30 years of aerial photography experience – first via choppers then in recent years, also via drones. Plus on a panel discussing drone photography & videography tips & tricks. The first Australian to present at North America’s largest commercial drone conference, & one of the few female presenters.
  • Australian Women in Agriculture conference, Shepparton (Vic); 17-19 Aug (away 16 – 20 Aug). Presented a theory session on drones in agriculture, then a hands-on drone demonstration at Dookie Ag College.
  • RAPAD Outback AeroDrone Symposium, Barcaldine – 11-12 August (away 10-13 Aug); presented 2 sessions – an introduction to drones on farms & cattle stations, and aerial photography.
  • Central Queensland, 1 August; Injune. Rural Drone Academy, full day ag drone training. Away 31 July to 3 August – ‘Putting drones to good use on farms and cattle stations’; plus commercial photography. For the Roma-based Maranoa Regional Council.
  • Cunnamulla, Quilpie, Thargomindah & Morven (South Western Queensland), AgForce multi-topic workshops.  17-20 July (dates away – 16 – 21 July). Ran rural social media sessions: ‘Putting social media to work for the bush’; plus answering drone queries.
  • Birdsville (Far SW Qld); (during the Birdsville Big Red Bash); 10 – 12 July (away 7 – 15 July)
  • ‘Digital Farmers: Bringing AgTech to Life 2018’ – 13-14 June; Sydney. Run by the Australian Farm Institute. Away 12-15 June.
  • ‘Basalt Bash & Beauty’, Mt Surprise (Far North Qld); 29-31 May (away 29th May – 31 May 2018). Workshops on using drones on cattle stations (‘Drones, are they the future? and can they help?’) and effective use of social media (‘Social media – the do’s & dont’s’).  Organised by AgForce & the Northern Gulf Resource Management Group.
  • ‘Your produce, my plate, our future’ forum, Laura (Far North Qld);  (15-16 May; away 14-17 May). Run/organised/supported by AgForce & Cape York Natural Resource Management. Workshop on using drones on cattle stations.
  • Beef Australia, Rockhampton (Qld); 6th – 11th May (away: 5th – 12th May). As usual I was on a stand at Rockhampton’s Beef Week – but in 2018, rather than have my own stand in the Walter Pearce Pavilion, I was on Quadrant Australia’s.
  • Gulf Country, Queensland attending 2 workshops run by Northern Gulf Resource Management Group; drones & presentations; away 18th – 22nd April
  • AgriFutures Rural Women’s Award – Rural Drone Academy project, Queensland finalist interview & winner announcement, 20th – 23rd March, Brisbane.
  • Women on Farms Gathering, (Victorian Rural Women’s Conference) Mornington Peninsula (Victoria); away 15th – 18th March 2018. Workshops on social media/mobile phone photography, and an introduction to drones in agriculture.
  • USA; away from 20th February until 11th March.  Attended the opening of ‘Whispering grass – stories from Australia’s outback cattle stations’ – my exhibition in the Embassy of Australia in Washington D.C.; opened by Australia’s Ambassador to the US, Joe Hockey.  There’s some info on the Washington exhibition blog post. I also attended a DJI drone photography academy day in North Carolina plus the New York City Drone Film Festival and Drone Day.

2017:

  • Victoria & Southern NSW – farm photography plus 2 day TAFE drone course training; away 7-15 December.
  • Mareeba (Far North Queensland) National Agricultural Day – Farmer Meets Foodie forum & Food Truck Feast, 21 November (away 20-22 Nov). #AgDay presentation on making the most of social media; plus a panel session on social media for business.
  • Townsville (North Queensland)‘Politics in the Pub’ event run by Agforce – forum at the Commonwealth Hotel in South Townsville, with North Queensland state election candidates in attendance. 16 November (office shut in the late afternoon, only).
  • Narrandera (Southern NSW) – at the NSW Rural Women’s Gathering, ‘Women Culture Land – just add water’, 27-29 October (away 26 Oct to 1 Nov); ran 2 workshops: How to get the best photographs from mobile phones, and rural travel.
  • Townsville (North Queensland) – 24 October; ‘Managing risks: Securing the Future’ live export forum; run by AgForce in conjunction with ALEC (Australian Livestock Exporters’ Council).  Presentation: ‘best practice’ live export story (& traps to avoid).
  • Emerald (Central Queensland)Queensland Rural Regional & Remote Women’s Network conference, ‘Building vibrant communities, developing future gems’; 19th to 21st October (away 19-22 Oct); ran 2 unique workshops – How to get the best photographs from mobile phones, and rural travel.
  • Victoria & Southern NSW – away 5-12 October (completing magazine stories)
  • USA – attended InterDrone – the largest drone conference in the world. Plus workshops on drone cinematography & drone night flying. Away 30 Aug – 14 Sept.
  • Prairie (North Queensland) – Kooroorinya Ladies Day – 26th August (away 25-27 August); workshops on ‘Drones in Agriculture’, ‘Better Mobile Phone Photography’ & ‘Grants & Scholarships for Rural Women’.
  • Charleville (Western Queensland) – 27 July (away 26-28 July); ‘Managing risks: Securing the Future’ forum; run by Agforce. Workshops on drones in agriculture & mobile phone photography.
  • Corner Country trip (north-eastern South Australia, north-western NSW & far south-western Queensland) – 8 July to 23 July; for photography purposes (including an Outback Magazine story).  Remote area – limited communication while away.
  • Malanda; Atherton Tablelands (Far North Queensland) – 21st June (away 20-22 June); ‘Managing risks: Securing the Future’ forum; run by Agforce, the Northern Gulf Resource Management Group & the Queensland Farmer’s Federation. Keynote speaker: Drones in Agriculture. Workshops: mobile phone photography & how to use social media efficiently & effectively.
  • South-east Queensland; Brisbane – 3rd June to 6th June; ‘She Flies’ drone instructor training.
  • Far North Queensland – 9th to 12th May; tropical pasture field day on Olive Vale station, Laura & corporate photography.
  • Victoria & southern NSW – RM William’s Outback Magazine business story; away 13th April to 21st April.
  • Southern Gulf country (Qld); RM William’s Outback Magazine station story. Away 3rd April to 10th April.
  • Australian Women in Agriculture (AWiA) event at the Toowoomba Show Speaking about the ‘Trial and Terror’ involved in running an entrepreneurial rural business, triumphing over obstacles (even when such persistence borders on crazy), the compromises women make and changes I have seen in the bush. Away 31 March to 2 April.
  • Northern Beef Producers Expo, Charters Towers – away on 3rd & 4th of March.
  • Queensland Rural Press Club – monthly luncheon in Brisbane; 16th February (away 15-17 Feb).  The February speaker was Simon Crean, talking about Australia’s place in the global livestock trade (and our live export industry).  The annual Rural Media Awards were also presented – this year I was delighted to win the Rural Social Media category.

2016:

  • Remote and Isolated Children’s Exercise (RICE) 40th anniversary dinner – Great to be invited to be the guest speaker at the 40th anniversary dinner, and take photographs of the children’s end-of-year activity day. (Away 8-12 December 2016). Loved visiting Whyalla, Port Augusta & other towns around Spencer Gulf (South Australia).
  • RICE – full day ‘Photography with Purpose’ workshop, at Mannahill, South Australia (Monday 31st October 2016).
  • NSW Rural Women’s Gathering, Broken Hill (NSW); ‘Rocks Rust Stars & Dust’. 28-30 October 2016; presented 2 workshops – “Rural travel around the planet – without costing the earth” and “Make photography work for you”.
  • QRRRWN Conference, Roma (Qld).  6-8 October conference days (away 5-9 October 2016).  Presented 2 workshops – “Rural travel around the planet – without costing the earth” and “Make photography work for you”.
  • BIRDSVILLE – late August/early September & mid May 2016; taking photographs & making short videos for the OBE Organic, a unique organic beef producing business; and the Birdsville Roadhouse.
  • HEADON PHOTO FESTIVAL OPENING & WORKSHOPS 29 April (away 29 April-3 May 2016).  I entered this prestigious photography competition for the first time this year and one of my photographs was a finalist.  It was included in the HeadOn exhibition in NSW Parliament House, from 2 May until 9 June, in the Fountain Court Gallery.
  • SYDNEY ROYAL EASTER SHOW (the show ran from 17 to 30 March 2016 & I had a stand in the Home, Garden & Lifestyle pavilion).
  • RIRDC RURAL WOMEN’S AWARD  As a Queensland finalist in this year’s awards, I was in Brisbane 23-25 February 2016 for the interviews and announcement of the winner.

ANNUAL OFFICE CLOSURES & POTENTIAL INTERRUPTIONS:

  • Late December to late January – shorter public hours are worked in order to catch up on the busy year that’s just finished, and new one ahead.
  • February – tropical Australia’s highest rainfall month; it’s the height of the wet season and it’s not unusual for business to be interrupted by heavy rain or a cyclone.  Work continues but I rarely commit to travelling away between the last week of January and mid March because of this. Sometimes there’s interruptions to our power supply and postal, phone and internet services.
  • Public holidays – I often work on public holidays & weekends but in to complete work on these days, phonecalls are usually not taken (but emails answered).

BEST WAYS TO CONTACT FIONA LAKE:

  • When I’m in the office, email is best for 24/7 enquiries (or ring [07] 4728 4922).
  • When travelling, social media is the best way to start the conversation, especially if your enquiry is urgent.
  • Sometimes I do not have access to any networks, but your message will be responded to as soon as possible.

Fiona Lake – social media account contact options:

  • Twitter & LinkedIn: the fastest way to get a message to me when I’m travelling.
  • Facebook & Instagram: I use these less often, but endeavour to check daily.
  • Email:  When I’m in the office this is the best way to enquire.
  • Landline phone:  If my office absence is longer than 2 weeks please don’t leave phone messages as Messagebank automatically deletes messages older than 14 days – and they can’t be retrieved.

Notes:

  • If you haven’t received a reply within a couple of days of the travel return date specified above, don’t hesitate to send a reminder message.
  • If ordering a special-event gift, please order well in advance to ensure timely delivery.
  • Apologies for any inconvenience caused by office absences.  Ideally I’d have a bevvy of slaves, but alas not.

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