Coota's calendar snapping up cash for the community

 A cool view : Photographer Martin Ascher keeps his eye on the sky at Coulls Inlet. Just one of his favourite locations for his calendar shots. Photo: Rachel Mounsey
A cool view : Photographer Martin Ascher keeps his eye on the sky at Coulls Inlet. Just one of his favourite locations for his calendar shots. Photo: Rachel Mounsey

At sunrise, sunset, in fog or rain, Mallacoota photographer Martin Ascher can be found with his eye firmly placed on his camera's viewfinder.

Like many photographers he just can't go past a good sunset. But unlike some he'll go to great lengths to capture them.

He's been known to climb ladders to tie back branches for the perfect frame, paddle out on the lake on a cool mid winters morning to capture the rising fog and to lie on the busy boardwalk to snap up a warm orange sky.

All for the sake of a community calendar aimed at raising money for local emergency services.

For husband and wife team Martin and Mariska, the early mornings of lugging heavy camera gear at the crack of dawn and long nights of editing have proven to be worth every click of the shutter.

Over the past four years, the calendars featuring breathtaking Mallacoota landscapes have raked in almost $33,000.

"The support from locals, tourists, sponsors and businesses has been overwhelming," said Mariska.

"We've donated $24,300 to the Mallacoota Medical Clinic and recently the Mallacoota Ambulance service were able to purchase two resuscitation dolls."

Local services including the CFA, SES and the Mallacoota WIRES wildlife shelter have also benefitted from the calendar's sales.

Resucitation dummies for Mallacoota Ambulance: Martin and Mariska Ascher pictured with the Mallacoota Ambulance crew. Photo: supplied.

Resucitation dummies for Mallacoota Ambulance: Martin and Mariska Ascher pictured with the Mallacoota Ambulance crew. Photo: supplied.

With the addition of Mallacoota facts and thoughtful titles to each image, the calendar has proven popular with not just locals but also visiting tourists. The couple claim calendars been spotted hanging on walls all over the world.

"They've been spotted in Dubai and Europe. And just recently we heard of one hanging up in a milkbar in outback Western Australia." said Martin.

"It's a good feeling to think your images and an appreciation of Mallacoota have travelled so far away."

And with the 2020 edition now on sale, one would think Martin and Mariska would be ready to take a break and settle in for a lazy few winter sleep-ins.

The 2020 cover image titled 'Meditation in an image' Photo: Martin Ascher

The 2020 cover image titled 'Meditation in an image' Photo: Martin Ascher

But it seems Martin has other ideas.

"How can you ignore such beauty," he said looking out over Coull's Inlet.

"Look at those reflections- the lake's like glass, it's perfect and all you need is just 1/1000th of a second."