Cathy Finch Photography

Toowoomba QLD

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Behind the lens

Cathy is a contemporary photographer and travel journalist based in Toowoomba, Queensland.

Her work takes her around the world, capturing stories of people, places and nature.  Fueled by a passion for reality and beauty in every situation, Cathy covers everything from news, sport, events, mining and port photography, to contemporary portraiture, school formals, studio, advertising, and travel.  Specializing in adventure, she is happiest in the wide open spaces working on anything daring, bold and edgy.

As a photographer for one of the world's leading image libraries, Getty Images, (formerly Lonely Planet travel photographer), her work has been published in many newspaper, magazine and guide book publications from Camping to Luxury Travel and Adventure outlets, including the prestigious Australian Geographic magazine and many in-flight magazines.     

Cathy also teaches photography in Toowoomba for Studio Fifty Three and shoots news and feature stories in the area for the Courier Mail.  


Bio by Cathy

Raised on a small farm in country Queensland, I have long been seduced by the great outdoors although still baffled how a young, naïve, farmer’s daughter picks up such an insatiable desire to travel.

Inspired by an imposing picture of Machu Picchu on the hard cover of my school atlas, I set off (amid much family protest) with a daring ticket to ride. I wanted to see the world. Already equipped with a schoolgirl love of words and images, I traipsed through the United Kingdom, Europe, Russia, Scandinavia, Greece, Africa, Israel and Egypt with a SLR film camera hung over my shoulder. When the check-list of countries and money finally dwindled, I put myself to work within the stocks and shares heavies in London, the ski fields of the Austrian Tyrol and a job on a cruise ship bound for Alaska and Tahiti.

As a trainee wine sommelier, I quickly discovered that wine came out of a bottle, not a box, and with a shimmering silver taster cup dangling expertly around my neck, I pulled more tips than the Captain could ever imagine. The world was at my porthole.

After many years wandering, clear blue skies and the sound of magpies warbling called me home to join a private vessel filming a series of underwater documentaries, sold to the Discovery Channel. When the chasing of great white sharks, salt water crocodiles, whale sharks, tuna aggregations and the likes became second nature, I finally opted to put pen to paper professionally to complete a diploma in photojournalism, followed by a two year stint with the Canberra Times.

I proceeded to live in Karratha, one of Western Australia’s most remote and rugged posts, then Central Queensland, working on newspapers and freelancing my work around Australia. I was a weekly columnist and travel reporter with the Gladstone Observer and on-board as a photographer, shooting news, sport, travel and lifestyle.

Today my passion and inspiration for both foreign lands and my own home country, burns deeper than ever. I live to know more about my world and continue to dream of open spaces, where there are no paths, and go on each and every assignment striving to bring back with vividness, the heart of every destination in words and honest images.  Within my work I strive to tackle world issues, caring for the environment and progressing into humanitarian work.  While in town I enjoy the excitement commercial projects bring, whether it's out on a mining site, playing on big machinery, or dealing with vivacious school children and the general public.  

I love my pillow menu and putting on the heels in five-star luxury. I enjoy fancy food shows and healthy retreats but I am at my happiest helping to achieve a better life for others in developing countries, amid my writing and photography commitments that see me climbing mountains, skiing down them, diving reefs, droving cattle, four-wheel-driving, rafting, jumping off cliffs and sleeping in my swag under the stars.

It could be said I specialise in adventure and wildlife but put me on assignment and I will rise to any challenge. As a professional photographer, strong images bind together my words and articles.

More recently I have also become a CASA Certified Drone Pilot and love having a couple of drones in my arsenal to help capture destinations and businesses from an entirely new angle and perspective.  In my spare time I can also be spotted on the tarmac marshalling in aircraft and parking them on bay.  

Most importantly perhaps, I am a mum.  I have two beautiful girls who frighteningly seem to share my spirit of adventure and will take to the trail with me to report on any tale or exploit.

Life is precious - tell the story, one frame at a time.  

Make a difference. See a difference. Be the difference.  Barefoot Conservation.

Getty Image Photographer
Tutor for Studio Fifty Three
Courier Mail Photographer (on-call Toowoomba/Darling Downs)
Winner of 2009 ASTW Excellence in Journalism Award for ‘Best Image Taken in Australia’
Winner of 2010 ASTW Excellence in Journalism Award ‘Photographer of the Year'
Finalist 'Photographer of the Year' 2011,2012,2013
CASA Certified Drone Pilot 
Cathy was featured in the Walkley Magazine, Australia's premier journalist magazine, for her coverage of the 2011 Grantham and Toowoomba Flood Zone.