Q Are You? Learn more about ‘farmer’s wife’ and the woman behind the lens, Justine Rowe

Headshot of Kate Campbell
Kate CampbellGeraldton Guardian
Mullewa photographer Justine Rowe with horse Springbrook Harmony.
Camera IconMullewa photographer Justine Rowe with horse Springbrook Harmony. Credit: Alix Kennedy/Alix Kennedy

Justine Rowe is a self-confessed “farmer’s wife”, “jack of all trades” and freelance photographer based in Mullewa, whose fabulous photos are regularly seen in the pages of the Guardian and Midwest Times.

How did you come to live in Mullewa and how long have you called it home?

I was born and bred in Mullewa. My parents were machinery dealers in town, selling Holden cars and Steiger tractors. After a few years away at boarding school and uni in Perth I returned home to work in the Westpac Bank. I married a Wongoondy farmer in 1992 and moved out to the farm then.

What’s your day job and the best thing about it?

I am a stay-at-home “farmer’s wife” — jack of all trades. Cook, cleaner, driver, bookkeeper. I am also a freelance photographer as my “real job”. This gives me an escape from the kitchen when I photograph social and sporting events around the Mid West.

What do you do for fun?

When I say that photography is my job, it is also how I have fun. I rarely have a social outing that doesn’t entail me taking my camera. I enjoy playing sports, including tennis and polocrosse. Yoga is now a passion also. My horses are my “happy place”.

Finish this sentence: Come to Mullewa for the _____, stay for the ______.

Come to Mullewa and stay for the wildflowers. It is really beautiful in spring.

What’s your most embarrassing moment or something you wish you’d never done?

A hard question because I am such a “goof ball” and embarrass myself regularly. The most memorable one I can think of was when I was talking to a client who was flying with Geraldton Air Charter to take some aerial photos of the Abrolhos Islands. He asked for some tips from me with shadows etc. I told him to make sure he took some photos with his iPhone as they work really well from the plane and are so safe on the day. I later found out he was from National Geographic and was probably more than capable of taking a great shot with the top of the range camera equipment.

If you weren’t in Mullewa, where would you be?

I am so happy where I am at the farm and don’t really desire to be anywhere else. I love a good road trip but always enjoy returning home. There is nothing like looking at the ocean after you have been on the farm for a while.

Who inspires you the most?

My mum (Wendy Mann, from Geraldton Air Charter). She is a hardworking, clever lady who has achieved so much. We have had some wonderful adventures over the years. The funny thing is I am scared of flying and she is scared of horses.

If money was no object, what would you do?

I would build a big house on the farm and maybe another one in town ready for retirement. Then hire someone to clean them for me. There is a farm close by that I have always loved, so I would probably try and purchase that too.

What’s something that never goes out of style and something that should never be in style in the first place?

Levi jeans and a nice tailored shirt never go out of style. Jeans and boots are my thing. Shoulder pads and big permed hair should never have come into style.

What song sums up your life right now?

‘Never Get Old’ by Nathaniel Rateliff and the Night Sweats.

Do you want to have a go at Q Are You? Send us your answers and a high resolution photo of yourself to news@geraldtonnewspapers.com.au

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