Snap-happy pair keep it positive for the Bay

Pointing out the Byron Bay positives. Ben and Yoko Bennink on the job at Main Beach.
Pointing out the Byron Bay positives. Ben and Yoko Bennink on the job at Main Beach.
Ben and Yoko Bennink have got to be Byron Bay’s number one snap-happy couple.
Between them, they have probably taken more than 10,000 surf and beach-related digital images since last December for their web site, In Byron Bay Today.
Most of the images don’t make it to the site though, with Ben and Yoko sifting through the hundreds they take each day to pick the best 20.
They have a simple formula for doing that – they pick the images they believe best depict what sort of a day it has been in the Bay.
It’s something they do five days a week, working long into the night updating their site which they launched to show the ‘positive’ side of the town – and also of course, to hopefully make a living out of it.
Ben, a surfer for 40 years, takes the surfing shots and Yoko, who took up surfing seven years ago, does the ‘people’ shots, locals and visitors alike.
Yoko says she approaches ‘happy’ people and most are, indeed, happy to be photographed. Men are much shyer about it, she says.
Ben said the idea for the site came about after repeated requests from friends around Australia and the world for information about Byron Bay.
He said they wanted to take a ‘softer’ approach and to depict in images and words daily life at Byron Bay and what kept them living in the town.
“We have a few underlying messages on the site, gentle reminders that Byron Bay is a community where real people live and it’s not a theme park,” said Ben.
“We are pointing out the positives – to see Byron Bay the way we see it.”
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