At home with photographer Tom Ross

Derby Street | Architecture architecture | Photographer: Tom Ross

What does the concept of home mean to you? 

Jeepers. All the clichés, about family I guess, but also I want it to act as a constant reminder of who we are, and where we’re trying to go.

How would you describe your home?

A sunny little treetop nest

When photographing a project, what elements are important to you and how do you try to capture these?

I start with the designer’s intent and let that inform where we point the camera. For myself it’s important to try to capture atmospheric qualities beyond the purely visual. Still photography is obviously reductive which has its strengths and weaknesses.

Derby Street | Architecture architecture | Photographer: Tom Ross

How do you select the things you surround yourself with at home?

I think of it as a coral reef of our lives well lived. A team effort with Emily, Lenny, and Lucy, it’s a growing collection of artefacts of the people we know mostly, and the experiences we’ve had.

What made you decide to renovate your home instead of choosing to buy something new?

Everyone else was getting a go at it. I’m so jealous of all the people I meet who get to work with architects to make places for themselves, it’s a wonderful process. That, and why buy something new built by a broken system when there’s so much great quality stuff around that can be affordably given some love.

How would you describe the process of renovating with a friend?

I imagine it’s fraught for some, but it was just a hoot for us. Well I can’t speak for Michael Roper (Architecture architecture), but I had fun (most of the time). Mike and the gang made the major gestures of knocking walls out, designing the steel work and things, then we only had enough money left to do the kitchen and bathroom ourselves.

How do you select and think about colour?

The trend as I get older seems to be more and more colour, because life too short to worry about being tasteful or something. In this case, I tried a few colours for the steel, and ended up with a pink hue I had sampled from a photo I took of the sky at dawn out our window. It was a colour I just kept noticing in the sky here.

Elizabeth Campbell RAIA is a senior architect at the City of Melbourne. She is a contributing editor of Architect Victoria.

Tom Ross is a photographer living and working in Naarm (Melbourne). Trained at the Victorian College of the Arts, and Massachusetts College of Art, he works with architects, and storytellers, and has been published internationally.

Published online:
01 Jan 2024

Source:
Architect Victoria
Edition 3 
2023

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