When painting this work, I felt like I was feeling the land. It was flowing, like I was there on the land. I was walking this journey
and capturing moments from childhood. I could see our corrugated iron home, the campfire, the waterholes we used for drinking
and swimming. I could see my mother washing our clothes in the creek. I could see the textures, the cracks, the soil, the
landscape. I could see the red-brown earth, hear the crackling of the fire, smell the smoke and burnt toast, see the billy boiling. I
could feel the closeness of family and the small community nearby. If you look after the land, it looks after you. If you look after
family, family looks after you.
For me, the boomerang symbolizes returning to country. I have just come back from Chicago after receiving an international
award for my coffee table art book on reef and rainforest. But my dream for a number of years has been to make a documentary
about my country and my grandfather Thomas Miller. I was inspired by his story of being carried in a dilly bag by his mother and I
did a painting of this that won the Oceania Art Prize in 2006. This will be the subject of the documentary. We need to listen to our
elders and their stories and retell them or paint them so that wisdom can be passed down to the next generation.