DURING his travels to the Philippines, Mooloolaba photographer Jonathan Clifford came across a shanty town of people living within the walls of a cemetery.
While impoverished and displaced, they were happy, resilient and ingenious.
These are the sorts of stories he wants to tell.
Mr Clifford, 26, along with the members of photographic collective, ET AL., are in line to win the British Council's Realise Your Dream competition.
ET AL., which was co-founded by Mr Clifford and also consists of four other Brisbane-based members, was chosen as one of 20 semi-finalists out of more than 650 applicants.
The competition aims to give a leg-up to emerging artistic talent by offering three winners $10,000, return flights to England, mentorship and work experience in their field.
Mr Clifford said the collective tried to tell the stories of those on the fringe of society such as the homeless and asylum seekers.
He said they attempted to nurture an intimate relationship with their subjects and capture them in a natural state.
His social conscience was shaped through his experience of travelling to the Philippines in his youth. He has since returned to the country several times, working with and documenting its people.
He said the most eye-opening experience was when he came across the people living inside a cemetery.
He had never seen anything like it and wanted to take out the Realise Your Dream competition so he could travel the world telling similar stories.
"I was completely unaware anything like that existed," he said.
"I mean people living in and amongst the tombs. It was just fascinating."