Homecamp (Doron and Stephanie Francis, Hardie Grant)
Homecamp is 250 pages of pure escapism. Compiled by Doron and Stephanie Francis, creators of the popular Homecamp blog and stylish outdoor lifestyle brand, this unusual coffee-table book features short Q&As and gorgeous images that capture the experiences of everyday adventurers—architects, photographers, farmers, baristas, writers and more—who have embraced the great outdoors. Some have pursued crazy dreams or chosen new beginnings, such as the former advertising employee who quit his job to ride a motorcycle from Alaska to Argentina, or the couple who started a beach-cleaning business to clear up Australia’s coastline; others simply share incredible memories, such as witnessing the Northern Lights or escaping the chill of a Finland winter by retreating into the heat and sweat of a traditional smoke sauna. Books like this can easily feel self-indulgent and aspirational rather than inspirational, but Homecamp avoids straying into mawkish territory—although there is a somewhat similar tone to every Q&A. The collection of ‘how to’ camping guides at the back of the book are a practical addition, and Homecamp’s stunning imagery and charming stories nicely encapsulate its creators’ philosophy that simply being in nature is what counts—you don’t have to travel the world or give up your day job to appreciate the value of what lies beyond your front door.
Carody Culver is a freelance writer and editor and the program coordinator for Queensland Poetry Festival