Tourism Australia collaborator Karina Holden on the intricacies of filming Australia

Tourism Australia collaborator Karina Holden on the intricacies of filming Australia

Australian Geographic in partnership with global presenting partner, Tourism Australia, has announced the launch of ‘Australian Geographic: Our Country Immersive Experience (Our Country).’

This multi-sensory experience is showcased through large format multi-screens to take its audience into the beating heart of Australia’s vast wilderness.

Together with TEG Live, the international touring event will launch its world premiere in Sydney on 19 November 2022 at Hall 7, ICC Sydney Exhibition Centre in strategic partnership with the NSW Government through its tourism and major events agency, Destination NSW. The event is supported by its official partner, AAT Kings.

We caught up with Karina Holden, the head of factual content at Northern Pictures and UNESCO Sydney City of Film, Filmmaker of the Year, who was responsible for capturing content for the experience, and discussed her approach to filming Australia and what she learnt from the experience.

“We have been putting together a first-of-its-kind event that is an incredible, multi-sensory experience that’s going to open at the ICC in Darling Harbour in November,” Holden said.

By the time it launches, Holden will have been working on the immersive experience for over 20 months. She has described the project as a reimagining of Australia in an immersive experience through natural sounds and natural history footage.

Viewers can step into Australia through all of the different habitats “in this incredible 48-minute show that immerses you directly in the power of nature,” Holden said.

Holden wants to show the pure force of nature, its diversity and beauty in ‘Our Country.’

“Your experience of being surrounded by the wilderness of Australia is to inspire you, which is why we’ve partnered with Tourism Australia and Destination New South Wales and why AAT Kings has supported the project,” Holden said.

“We want people to love and feel this place in a way that makes them want to get out and experience it for themselves.”

Holden said that this film is not focused on humans or their impact on the environment, but rather where “you can go and experience the true beauty and splendour of Australia as it should be.”

“It takes you into the celebration of everything that is on this incredible continent with creatures and places that you don’t see anywhere else,” Holden said.

The diversities of Australia and the contrast of extremes is what spoke to Holden when she was crafting the immersive experience.

“Flying over Kati Thanda-Lake Eyre and seeing the colours and the shape shifting that happens underneath you and how incredibly alien and remote that landscape is just so extraordinary. Then being in the riches of the Daintree or on the Great Barrier Reef, in our southern oceans around South Australia and the Recherche archipelago, and the incredible marine richness that we’ve got and its species that come right up to you and play alongside you. Everything I got to witness and experience was an incredible privilege,” Holden said.

While she travelled independently for the filming of the experience, Holden hopes that the footage can inspire travellers to go on tours where they can experience remote and niche areas of Australia themselves.

“Hopefully, the magic that we bring within the show will inspire people to want to go out and do those tours themselves,” Holden said.


Featured Image: Karina Holden (nsw.gov.au)

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