em Press Publishing
Launch this spring of nature journal organised around six Indigenous seasons
Ornithologist and naturalist Tanya Loos is publishing a book with em PRESS this coming spring organised around six seasons. Yes, you read that correctly… six seasons, which is the number that Aboriginal people would have once observed. We plan to reintroduce the concept of six seasons – a concept tailored to suit the Australian landscape, rather than the European construct of four seasons designed to suit a different continent.
The two added indigenous seasons are pre-spring and late summer. The former is when the first burst of fecundity begins. The latter time was when Indigenous people undertook much of their burning, clearing patches choked with undergrowth in preparation for their underground larder of orchids and herbs to burst through after the rains. Tanya and I have adapted other Australian seasonal calendars to match conditions in central Victoria’s foothill forests. We have consulted with local senior Wathawurrung elder Brien Nelson.
Tanya is writing stories for the Daylesford Nature Diary on plants and animals that can be commonly seen in the foothill forests each season. Walk out your back door in this region and this is what you are most likely to observe. Many of the stories are based on her nature columns in the Daylesford/Hepburn Advocate newspaper.
We plan to produce an A2 poster, six season wheel calendar to go with the book. Delicate, water colour illustrations are being prepared for the book and calendar by graphic artist Anne Mason – her illustration for autumn can be seen above. Anne drew the illustrations for another em PRESS publication The People of Gariwerd.
Historical Interpretation Award Winner in the 2012 Victorian Community History Awards
A new walking guide with a cultural twist, the Goldfields Track walking guide won a second award in a row for em PRESS at this year’s Community History Awards. The guide provides in depth coverage of not just the landscape, but also the cultural heritage of the central Victorian goldfields. It was describe in the award citation as “a model for future guides.”
In June 2012, em PRESS published the full colour wire bound walking guide to the 210km Goldfields Track, which contains 33 maps at a 1:25,000 ratio with track notes. The maps and tracks notes are sandwiched between essays by local experts on reading the landscape and the region’s cultural heritage. Launched in 2010, the Goldfields Track links Ballarat to Bendigo. Gib Wettenhall, the publisher owner of em PRESS, is the publications manager for the Great Dividing Trail Association, where the Goldfields Track walking guide can be purchased online.
Overall Winner of the 2011 Victorian Community History Awards
The em PRESS book The People of Budj Bim last year won the Overall Winner award at the Victorian Community History Awards. Written in collaboration with the Indigenous Gunditjmara people of south-west Victoria, The People of Budj Bim, was acknowledged as “well-researched, and clearly presented” showing a “profound knowledge and understanding of the natural, cultural and historical… landscape.”
It is aimed at tourists, tour leaders, school groups, the community and the public in general.
Books on the Grampians-Gariwerd ranges
A magnificent large format landscape photography book on the Grampians, Gariwerd: Reflecting on the Grampians, featuring 100 photographs by Alison Pouliot and five essays on the history and landscape by Gib Wettenhall. Foreword by the former Governor of Victoria and Olympic runner, John Landy. Published by em PRESS and available at a discounted price of $49.95 on the em PRESS website. Also a limited edition in a slipcase and on A1 paper is available on request for $79.95.
An earlier em PRESS book The People of Gariwerd, an Indigenous history of the Grampians ranges, was written in collaboration with the Indigenous groups associated with the Brambuk Cultural Centre at Halls Gap – the Djab wurrung and Jardwadjali.
Aimed at visitors to the Grampians and school groups, it has been reprinted three times and is currently out of print.
Specialising in what makes Australian landscapes tick
em PRESS Publishing specialises in south-east Australian landscapes and their historical and cultural contexts. em PRESS is particularly interested in fusing Indigenous, European settler and nature-based readings of the landscape to provide a deeper and more complex viewpoint of our country.
Purchase em PRESS books online
em PRESS publications can be purchased through its website or at a range of independent bookshops listed on the em PRESS website.
To contact em PRESS, phone Gib Wettenhall on 0419 370 342 or email: gib@emPRESSscapes.com