‘Be realistic, demand the impossible.’ (Paris 1968)

Last week I had the very good fortune to meet Tim Page. Tim is a patron of the organization I work for, MAG, and he came to Cambodia with a film crew from Al-Jazeera television to (amongst other things) film our activities. Tim’s iconic photo-journalism of the Vietnam War initially wrought his reputation in the 1960’s, but there is so much more to this man who has often used his chosen medium to make us confront the reality of what we , as humans, are and what we are actually all capable of. I can’t even begin to encapsulate his achievements, not just his photography, but also his extensive humanitarian work, his recovery from the brink of death and the dark nights of the soul he has traveled through in his lifetime – to see his work and read more about his remarkable life please go to his website, www.timpageimage.com.au 

We met several times over a few days and I immediately warmed to the imposing figure with the quintessentially English accent who limped into the office. His body still bears the scars of war, and he jokes readily about his hell-raising days, yet behind his determined gaze one can glimpse a little of the deeper anguish he still struggles with as he processes the things he has seen and done, and the memories of the friends who drove off in a cloud of motorcycle dust and never returned…

There are simply not enough mavericks like Tim left in this world, people who refuse to settle for the safe option and who push themselves to go further, faster and higher and truly live life to the absolute full… it was a real pleasure to meet him and find him funny, articulate, generous, charming, eccentric, but above all still driven and truly passionate about his life and work.

Tim Page
Tim (r) and I, Phnom Penh May 2007