It was such an honour and privilege to begin this Kids in Sydney project by photographing Claudia and Matt Bowman with their three gorgeous children. Claudia and Matt, natives of Sydney, decided to settle in the heart of the City upon returning from their travels about ten years ago. When they decided to start a family, it never occurred to them to move out from the vibrant neighbourhood of Potts Point. They feel strongly that their kids are at a great benefit growing up within a stone’s throw of Kings Cross. “The dynamic city neighbourhood provides us with the most educational, stimulating, convenient, social environment for us to exist as a healthy, happy, balanced family unit whilst working and interacting with our environment and the people in it,” Claudia said the day we met for her family session.
We met on a sparkling Sydney Saturday at their new apartment in Rushcutter’s Bay. The children have a stunning public front yard in which to run, play, laugh, and learn. With tennis courts, a playground, and the harbor all at their feet, it is hard to argue that the space sacrificed by apartment living is really necessary to a healthy, happy childhood. The children, 6, 5 and 3, were eager to show off their favourite trees for climbing, beach for dipping their toes in, and grassy green parks where they played chase and a bit of football while I snapped and looked on.
Claudia is also a legend when it comes to advocating for resources needed to raise kids in the City of Sydney. And Matt has supported her efforts every step of the way. Claudia has spent years encouraging the City to invest in needed infrastructure like upgraded parks and playgrounds, safer crossing areas, bubblers, and improved library space for kids. “We are fortunate to have an accessible local government that has been most sympathetic to the changing demographic of our neighbourhood- there is no doubting that our neighbourhood has had to evolve to accommodate the change of behaviour of young families staying in the city rather than heading out to the suburbs,” said Claudia.
Claudia and Matt are active in the community professionally. A small business owner, Claudia is a cheesemonger and owner of McIntosh & Bowman, a cheese events company. Matt is a dedicated high school teacher.
I asked Claudia what opportunities she and Matt felt their family had access to because they live in the City. , Claudia was quick to rattle off at least a dozen benefits of city living. At the top of her list was the ability to offer their children more opportunities to be stimulated and educated by tapping into the amazing comprehensive and free schedule of public events hosted by the City. Events like Vivid, Art and About, the Night Noodle Markets and the Christmas Concerts give families who might have limited financial resources the ability to still offer incredible cultural opportunities to their children.
It was such a joy to photograph this amazing family in their beautiful city neighbourhood. Here are some images from our afternoon together.
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