About the artist
Melissa Anderson is an accomplished artist with over two decades of experience. She has been published internationally, and her projects are held in the National Library Australia, Australian War Memorial, Australian National and State Galleries, and within international galleries. Her work has been recognised for its cultural significance including an Australia Day Cultural Medal. In 2017 Anderson was a finalist in the Clayon Utz Art Prize, Freemantle Portrait Prize, Australian Photography Awards, AIPP Australian Travel Photographer of the year finalist, and Josephine Ulrich and Win Schubert Prize., and numerous other prizes.
About the sitter
Gail Austen OAM is a well known Brisbane identity. She started in the Surfing industry in the 1970s, was an advocate for safety, business, and community. Her accolades include being a world class athlete, and in 1974 she founded the Australian Womens Surfriders Association, to promote women in Surfing in Australia. She also created the Straddie Classic to bring the coast and Brisbane together. She was responsible for the Valley Classic. Her company Goodtime Surf was rebuilt in 1984 after being firebombed. Austen has extensively contributed to many water sports associations, communities, youth, disability charities, Brisbane business, and EXPO 88. Her ethos is one of contributing back to community, and she has spent her life raising funds for others, giving purpose, building communities, and making a difference for Brisbane. She has repeatedly given second chances through employment, and her vision continues with her succession plan for Good time being passed onto this staff in a form of a co-op.