Kirsty McKenzie's letter from the May 2016 issue of Australian Country.


If it takes a village to raise a child, the same could be said of the number of people who collaborate to bring together each issue of Australian Country. It all starts when our team heads out to points all over Australia to uncover a fresh stock of features. Depending on geography and timing, this may mean photographer Ken Brass and I are on the road for a couple of weeks, or it may involve our contributing writers and photographers from all over the country.

Back in the office, our editorial assistant, Daria Kurilo, beavers away collating pictures and copy for all our columns, calendars and product pages. Our hard-working ad reps, Fiona Collins, Angelos Tzovlas and Angela Jevdich are out on the road making contact with the lovely clients who keep us in business. Then our designer, Rachel Henderson, works her magic on the pictures and stories, turning them into the beautiful features you see in each issue. Then the production and prepress department kicks in, making sure everything fits perfectly and our eagle-eyed proofreader, Haidi Bernhardt, is the final arbiter ensuring no typos or errors have slipped through.

Of course, none of this could happen without the cooperation and hospitality of the lovely people we feature in each issue. They welcome us to their homes and spoil us all by generously sharing their time and their stories. So as always, I’d like to thank all those people who went out of their way to bring this issue into the world. They include Garry and Linda McDouall, who let us help ourselves to the extraordinary kitchen garden at their home in the New England township of Bingara, the foundation that runs Woolmers Estate in Tasmania for unprecedented photographic access to this historic property and Mrs Cornersmith, as Alex Elliott-Howery dubs herself, for letting us gatecrash one of her preserving and bottling classes. Nurseryman David Lambley welcomed us to his garden at sparrows and his partner, artist Criss Canning, let us invade her studio and interrupt her creative time. An extra big shout-out goes to Bill and Julie Sheilds, who allowed us to take over their apple orchard and home for our fashion shoot.

I hope you enjoy the fruits of everyone’s labours as much as we have putting it all together and I look forward to seeing you next issue, which goes on sale June 9.