‘Unique creative expressions evolve when we step outside our comfort zone.’

- Steve Parish

This competition is about mental illness, but is also about so much more. Individuals facing challenges to their mental wellbeing are varied in their experiences and their responses. This competition hopes to capture the breadth of that diversity, from the experiences of pain and suffering, caring and empathy for loved ones, through to the elation of conquering obstacles.

All stories are valid and welcome: the competition aims to showcase the strengths and the travails, the joyous moments and the sad, of those who directly or indirectly confront the challenges of mental illness.

The competition

The competition will be judged using four criteria:

Lived Experience. Mental illness encompasses a range of disorders, some transient, others chronic; each is a personal story of lived experience. Photos in this category can be based on a wide range of emotions and representations, reflecting the diversity of people’s experiences.

Relationships. Mental illness not only effects those experiencing it, but also those close to them. Photos in this category can be based on the experiences of the individual, or those close to them.

Recovery. Many people recover fully or partially from mental illness, and live fulfilling and meaningful lives. Photos in this category celebrate recovery and wellness or feature the pathways to recovery.

Change. Despite progress in recent years, the one in four Australians experiencing mental illness still face challenges. Photos in this category will give us images about society’s future, and how mental wellbeing is addressed in that future.

Competition Director

Out of the Mist’s competition director is Michael Lockwood. Michael has worked as a senior executive within the Queensland Government and Brisbane City Council, where among other duties, he had responsibility for Council’s diverse engagement with the arts community. Michael has a lived experience of mental illness and is presently a post graduate student of Creative Industries at Queensland University of Technology.
Michael lives in the central south west Queensland town of Charleville, where he spends his spare time between renovating a 100 year old ‘Queenslander’ home, photographing the beauty of the Queensland outback and its people, and working on several video projects.


Steve Parish

Photographer, Publisher, Teacher, Writer, Naturalist & Artist

Steve is a passionate and highly motivational speaker and one of few Australian photographers who can look back over fifty-seven years of photography working across a vast range of social and natural history subjects. Since the age of sixteen, he has shared his work with….

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Mick Reid AM

President of the Mental Illness Fellowship of Australia.

Mick Reid is well known as a leader in our health system for over three decades. Mick has worked as a consultant for the World Health Organization on numerous projects. This included a stint living in Geneva and advising on the development of district health services and…

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Dr. Victoria Garnons-Williams

Lecturer in Visual Arts

Dr. Victoria Garnons-Williams is a Lecturer in Visual Arts within the Creative Industries Faculty at the Queensland University of Technology. She has an extensive background in art education that includes significant contributions to Arts and Education Policy and curriculum in Australia…

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Contact us

Want to know more about Out of the Mist? Or would like to get on board as a sponsor for this fantastic competition?​ Fill out the below form and someone will be in touch soon

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