Apr 06, 2020People & Industry

‘Pipes in Space’: Winner of In.Site on his Otherworldly Photograph

In.Site highlights the environment, community and people that surround and make the natural gas industry possible.


We all know the natural gas industry plays an important role in powering Australia. The In.Site photographic competition showcases the strong and constantly growing relationship between the natural gas industry and the areas we operate in through photography.

Employees from across the industry were invited to take part in In.Site by submitting photos of the places they worked or the people that surrounded the industry, whether fellow employees or local community members (with their permission, of course).

See the full gallery of submissions here.

Although Brighter received dozens of entries, there could be only one overall winner. Phil Woodhouse, Health & Safety Manager from the contracting company Spiecapag, took out the top prize with his image ‘Pipes in Space’.

In late 2021, the image was immortalized at the entrance to the Wandoan Community Hall, not far from where the image was captured by Phil.

We caught up with Phil to find out more.


Can you describe the photo for us:

This photo was taken at 3am on a winter’s night in Wandoan, Western Queensland. The image shows a stockpile of gas pipe set against the stars.


Tell us about the type of job you have:

I have been employed by Spiecapag since 2013, initially joining the company as a HSE Trainee and am now the Health and Safety Manager. I am very fortunate to have found a job that allows me to make a difference to the work force, and where I am encouraged to use creative methods to promote health and safety. My job typically starts onsite at 5.30am, greeting the crews and confirming they are fit for work, before moving to the office or out to the field to ensure are systems and processes reflect the work we perform. My job involves looking at risks and controls and asking the question, can we do more? Fortunately for me, Spiecapag encourages us to innovate, so I have been able to fuse my passion for photography and videography with my career to better communicate our messages.


Tell us a bit about how you captured this photograph: 

Wandoan always provides a stunning sunset and an even more impressive astro display at night, due to its distance from big city light pollution. However this natural beauty often goes unseen in typical construction photos, I wanted to promote the construction project but equally promote the beauty of Queensland’s outback. I woke up at 3am on a winter’s morning and set my camera up on a tripod, I played around for at least an hour getting the right composition and lighting, and as for specialist photography lighting,  I used my phone light to help luminate the pipe caps.

What do you love about working in the oil & gas industry?

The Oil and Gas Industry is at the forefront of safety innovation, and for me innovation is what keeps a business agile and competitive; I love being a part of it. The industry also provides massive opportunities to all involved, for example; employment opportunities in local towns, adding infrastructure to allow Australia to export/import, or simply, in my case, make a difference and capture some of the beauty in places many of us don’t get to very often.


Why did you want to share this view of your industry with others? 

A full pipeyard on a project represents that the construction journey is about to begin, there is a sense of anticipation, optimism and excitement. I wanted to share this photo because it shows the pipeyard in a new and unique light, under the stars before it becomes part of the underground picture.