Shoots & leaves
The nomadic life of garden photographer Claire Takacs
You might not know Claire Takacs’ name, but if you read garden books or magazines you’ll have seen her work. She’s a top Australian garden photographer who works around the world, following the seasons to capture beautiful gardens at their most compelling.
In the 14 years since she took up the profession, Takacs has shot more than 1000 gardens. Now she has distilled the best into a book, Dreamscapes (Hardie Grant, $70), which includes more than 50 gardens from across the globe – some the work of famous designers, others lovingly created by their owners.
“I could have filled three books, there are so many images to choose from,” laughs Takacs, 40. “We chose them for beauty and creativity, and hopefully they provide an inspiring glimpse into the remarkable diversity of gardens around the world. I am still continually surprised when I visit gardens.”
Closest to her heart is Cloudehill, the acclaimed garden of Jeremy Francis in the Dandenongs outside Melbourne, near where she grew up. It’s the first garden she photographed and one she returns to regularly. Other favourites include Great Dixter and Gravetye Manor in England, but