Celebrating 20 Years at Westmead

Cancer Centre for Children

About the photographer: Penny Steele


With a love for photography since high school, Penny’s introduction into the photographic world started in her early twenties when she was offered a job in a prolab as a junior printer. This was the beginning of a long career in the photographic industry as a printer working in Sydney-based labs which culminated in becoming a mural printer.

During this time, Penny printed for advertising agencies, students and professional photographers, including ciba-chrome exhibitions for artists such as Tracey Moffatt, Corrie Ancone and Ian Lever.

With a passion for travel, Penny loves to incorporate travel and photography and this year she participated in documenting the Speciality Coffee Association of America Expo in Seattle and the Café Biz Expo in Brisbane.

Creative Statement

It was a raw, powerful and emotional experience and I did see joy and happiness in the face of some incredible challenges in the Oncology Department.

I didn’t know what to expect but hoped to be able to capture the love and emotion that I felt when I met the children and some of the family members and wonderful staff. I tried to put cancer in the background and focus on the child and capture their beauty, courage and dignity.

I imagine that these images may stir up some unexpected emotions in the viewer but I also think that I have captured the real love and beauty that I felt when in the Camperdown Ward.

I feel honoured to have been part of this project.