Pay It Forward

Help create the Happiness!

Happy Snappers Adelaide is seeking your generosity with financial support or donations of any old bits of digital photographic equipment that you may not be using any more.

We are seeking donations of Canon EOS equipment!

If you have some Canon EOS digital photographic equipment laying around gathering dust, please consider putting it to good use by donating it to us here at Happy Snappers Adelaide.

It can be put to use in two different ways.





We need EF or EF-S mount lenses for the groups

Do you have spare or unused Canon gear that could be donated for the groups to use & explore digital photography with?
  • Telephoto lenses up to 300 mm
  • Macro lenses of any sort or extension tubes
  • 35, 40 or 50 mm prime lenses


Would you like to gift something to a participant?

We have passed on 3 cameras now to participants that otherwise could never afford to purchase one:
  • Do you have a working digital camera that is 8 MP or above?
  • It could be any type; Compact, Mirrorless, DSLR all are given new homes easily!
  • Please have the battery & charger for it, we can arrange for memory cards if needed.

“I could never have afforded this camera, not in my wildest dreams, I don’t feel worthy of such an amazing gift. This will help me to get out of the house more often, your photography groups are the only thing I normally do to get out of the house. Now I have a reason to go for a walk.” – Anonymous Participant

Want to help us with some fundraising?

There are two ways you can help us out financially.




1. Purchase a fund-raising photograph

The following images are available for purchase at a cost of $280 each. The proceeds of which will go towards helping pay for a weekend retreat for 8 participants later on in 2019 & also for entry to the Adelaide Zoo for the participants in term 4 of 2019.

These images were initially exhibited by Alex Mausolf (Happy Snappers Adelaide founder) as a part of the 2018 SALA Festival & they were nominated as a collective for the 2018 Don Dunstan Foundation Award. They are now being donated by Alex to help fund some activities for Happy Snappers Adelaide.

They are framed as pictured in simple black modern frames with white mattes.

Dimensions are:

  • 50 x 70 cm
  • 94 x 38.5 cm for the panoramic image of Victoria Square

Please email or ring 0413 549 088 with any queries.


2. Donate anonymously by Bank Transfer

Do you like or love the Happy Snappers initiative & want to help us out in some way but don’t have any equipment or the ability to help on the Management Committee? Donations via bank transfer are appreciated!
Every cent will go towards Happy Snappers Adelaide activities, including exhibitions, a weekend retreat for 8 participants, admission to the Adelaide Zoo for the participants.
  • BSB: 325 185

  • Account: 03674273

  • Name: John Alexander Mausolf *

* John is my legal or birth name, but my preference is to use Alex, one day I will blow the cash on changing it legally, so the bank account marries up to my name of preference.

Please email or ring 0413 549 088 with any queries.


Hands holding sapling in soil


Huge thanks go to

the following community centre’s, companies, NGO’s, services and groups for their invaluable assistance in helping to make Happy Snappers Adelaide become the amazingly effective thing that it has become!

Onkaparinga Seaside Walk

The Onkaparinga Seaside Walk for World Suicide Prevention Day is an annual event in our Southern coastal suburb of Moana, raising awareness & funds for suicide prevention, put on by the Seaford Rotary Club annually.

The Onkaparinga Seaside Walk for World Suicide Prevention Day very kindly donated $250 towards a much needed roller-bag to help move all the photographic equipment around in, allowing the participants the opportunity to explore their photography with more than one lens at a time, as I was previously limited to, as I could only take one backpack with me.

IT Share SA Inc.

Refurbishing discarded or donated computer parts & peripherals.

They supplied us with an incredibly priced laptop, so that at the end of a session I can import the images from those participants that use their own cameras.

Thanks for a fantastic service & an even more incredible price!

Sarah Jane W. Photography

Gorgeous newborn, portraiture and boudoir photography.

Donated some fantastic Portrait Lighting equipment (lights, stands & soft-boxes) for the groups to be able to use! Thanks so much for your generosity Sarah Jane.

Hackham West Community Centre

The heart of Hackham West.

Partnering with Happy Snappers Adelaide to create regular Mindful Photography sessions for the local community members! Thanks so much for being so progressive and seeing the worth of this unique idea.

Artworks Inc. Community Arts Studio

A unique community arts program, renowned for its innovative combination of public art and social inclusion.

Partnering with Happy Snappers Adelaide to create some special Mindful Photography sessions for the local community members as part of some different community events. Thanks for the amazing experience!

Community Health Onkaparinga

Promoting health & well-being in the City of Onkaparinga & encouraging residents to live healthy, active & creative lifestyles.

Assisting Happy Snappers Adelaide in our founding stages by helping to provide us public liability coverage & networking assistance as we grew our legs & learnt to run! Thanks so much for your assistance & seeing the potential of this simple idea.
Michelle H

Happy Helpers

Happy Helpers were formed thanks to a much appreciated piece of generosity from a local community event which raises awareness for suicide prevention as a fund-raiser so that they can put on Mental Health 1st Aid & Suicide Awareness & Prevention training courses for free in the local region. Their act of gifting us a roller-bag to transport all our photographic equipment in for the various sessions & locations we visit was able to be paid back by some of the participants & myself acting as event photographers for them. Something that I look forward to as an ongoing relationship for many years to come!

Since then the Happy Helpers have helped out & are available to help out at a range of various indoor & outdoor community events & functions; allowing groups that can’t afford photographers to have their events photographed & allowing the Happy Helper participants involved to know that they can be & in fact are of benefit to their local community.

It’s a beautiful thing!

As I now have my own UAV (drone) we can now offer that as a unique point of view for these community events too. Papers are lodged by myself to the Civil Aviation Safety Authority in accordance with UAV piloting requirements for public events.

Alex has his Federal Police & DCSI general clearance, as well as clearances for working with children & the vulnerable. It is hoped that those participants offering their time voluntarily as Happy Helpers will also obtain these clearances too.

Unfortunately, we can’t share images from all of these events, but when we can, we will. Here is a gallery of images taken at the Onkaparinga Seaside Walk, that kicked off this simple community-minded initiative. The Onkaparinga Seaside Walk for World Suicide Prevention Day is an annual event held in our Southern coastal suburb of Moana, raising awareness & funds for suicide prevention, put on by the Seaford Rotary Club annually.

If you are a community group within the Onkaparinga region & are interested in the possibility of having the Happy Helpers assist you, please, get in touch with Alex Mausolf through email or by mobile on 0413 549 088.



Help spread the Happiness

Happy Snappers Adelaide is in the process of creating a managing committee so that we can become an officially approved and registered charitable body. We still need a Treasurer & some Committee members though!

If you would like to help us out in these roles, or you potentially know of someone who would be amazing in these roles, please suggest this opportunity to assist a grassroots initiative that is genuinely helping improve lives in a simple way, so that we can get this monumental shift under way.

We need Management Committee members & a Treasurer

Do You…
  • Have a passion for photography, or perhaps the arts?
  • Can you understand the importance of access to the arts & regular quality time in nature for all those living with mental health challenges in their lives?
  • Can you manage simple finances? We don’t have a complicated financial structure!
  • Would you like the opportunity to give something back to the community in some way?
  • You don’t even have to live locally to be able to fulfill this role as we can meet via digital means.

Can You uphold these 4 legal duties?

The four main legal duties are:
  • the duty to act in good faith in the best interests of the organisation and for a proper purpose
  • the duty to act with reasonable care, skill and diligence (including the duty to prevent insolvent trading)
  • the duty not to improperly use information or position, and
  • the duty to disclose and manage conflicts of interest

“Happy Snappers Adelaide has been the single-most powerful thing in my life that I have ever done for others” – Alex Mausolf

Where can I find out more?

To find out more about exactly what the legal obligations are when becoming an active management committee member of a charitable body. You can download a thorough and excellent guide that is easy to understand from: Not For Profit Law / Justice Connect.





In a nutshell…

“The law recognises that committee members (or directors) as well as some office holders in not-for-profit groups make important decisions about the strategic direction and activities of a group. Because committees have significant power, the law requires them to comply with legal duties like acting in good faith and in the best interests of the organisation. Where the standards set by legal duties are not met, penalties can apply (but this is very rare). Sometimes conflicts arise between the personal interests of a committee member, and the interests of the group. The law also provides a framework on how to deal with this situation.”






So what are you waiting for?

Get happy!

Apply now



Moving Pictures

Videos of some of the places that the various Happy Snappers Adelaide participants have visited.

Still Pictures

Some image galleries from the Happy Snappers Adelaide participants at the various normal daytime sessions & some of the special after dark trips we have held outside of normal session times also.

Arranged in terms, going back from most recent to the first groups at the beginning of 2018.

Not all participants have contributed images to these galleries, with some people not wanting to be identified as participants, some others had concerns of their images being stolen or potentially printed & sadly others were of the belief that they didn’t have images of a standard worthy to being shared, As this is an initiative that is based on wellness, I will never pressure anyone to share their imagery, if they don’t want to.




Queries that are frequently asked of us

Why the need for cameras ? Everyone already has mobile phones that can take photographs, aren't they good enough ?

It is specifically the use of a fully controllable camera that induces a state of mindfulness on the participant, partly through awareness & partly through intense observation & a deeper level of thought. When using a mobile phone for photography one does not have to concentrate or observe to the same level as when using a controllable camera. I have some excerpts of studies & web articles that talk about this in quite some depth on the “Benefits” page in the “About” section.

How difficult would this be for someone that’s never used a camera before ?

Using a camera needn’t be a complicated process to learn. I instruct this in easy to digest bite-sized chunks. The first week is spent familiarising the participants with their camera of choice, learning how to make it focus where they want it to, using it on an automatic setting to start off with. In the second week, they progress to operating the aperture, which allows them the ability to choose how much of the scene is in focus.

It really is easy to grasp, people are always surprised by how quickly they actually get it & can start exploring it further to create the images they imagined!

Are there extreme weather policies ?

Absolutely! It doesn’t happen all that often, but the weather being what it is, it could occur.

In the event of hot weather being predicted the evening before a session, indicating that the temperature for a session would be 32 degrees or higher according to the Bureau of Meteorology that session will take place indoors where alternative photography opportunities will be arranged.

In the event of wet or extremely windy weather, the same policy will take place with alternative indoor photographic activities being offered.

Who owns the rights to the images ? If they are taken using your equipment aren’t they yours ?

Absolutely not! As the creators of the images, the copyright remains that of the participants.

If the images are to be sold or used, written permission is required from the creators; unless working as a part of the Happy Helpers when we are photographing a community event as the event photographers & then the rights of the images are those of the community group we are working for.

How do I get the photographs I take ?

This has been a learning curve over the last year, trying to work out how to pass the images off to the participants easily & the following methods are the easiest ways I can think of.

Method 1
  • Get yourself two 4 – 8 GB USB sticks.
  • Bring one each week with you to the session & pass it to me.
  • I transfer the images during that week & give the USB stick back to you the following week.
  • Method 2
  • Use your own SD card or cards, make sure it is 8 GB at the smallest.
  • Bring it with you each week.
  • Be aware that it will need to be formatted specifically for the camera you are using during the sessions, so may not be used with other cameras, unless it is reformatted each session which will wipe any old images from it. So make sure you back up anything on it prior to using it in a session, so as to avoid possibly losing anything on it.

Can I use my own camera ?

If you are lucky enough to have your own camera with a controllable aperture & the modes of P, A, S & M on the control dial or that are otherwise accessible somehow, certainly!

Can I learn how to use my own camera ?

Sure! Whilst this is not strictly a photography class, instruction, hints & tips are passed on according to the individuals interest level. Make sure that you have your instruction manual for reference, the full one with hundreds of pages to it, not just the ‘getting started’ guide. I don’t know where to access every feature on every brand or model of camera. & that will make the job easier if needed.

Do you cover photographic techniques like composition, storytelling, or the like ?

This is not an instructional thing as such, but tips & techniques are shared as they come up at various locations according to the individuals interest levels.

I'm not sure I could attend every week, can I still join in ?

For sure! Just pay for the term ahead & a spot is secured for you at all sessions, allowing you to attend when you can & covering your share of the transport costs each week.

There is no possible way to charge a week to week attendance for this programme without incurring additional costs myself that I can’t afford, what with me living on a Disability Pension.

How many participants can be a part of this ?

With us using a 12 seater bus, there can now be 10 participants for each session.

Can I see the destinations you have planned ?

Yes, if you go to the “Groups” page in the “Groups” section you will find the itinerary for the groups this term, or the term ahead as that approaches.

Do I need to bring anything with me ?

Recommended items include a mobile-phone ( for emergency contact if needed), a wide-brimmed hat, water & sensible closed-in footware for walking on possibly slightly uneven or loose surfaces.

Is this physically strenuous ?

Feedback from last years programme’s has been taken into account & the places we are visiting this year are significantly easier to get around.

Average fitness is required for the places we are visiting. There are no exceedingly hard walks, climbs or hikes, but the sessions can be on uneven surfaces, like are found at beaches or trails in parks.

Walk distances would range from 1 to 4 kilometre’s in length over a period of about one & a half to two hours for normal sessions.

The longer day-trips obviously cover a longer distance, but it is spread out over the day with lots of potential for rest, drinks & food in between destinations.


What does it cost to attend ?

As this is still just a bloke (me) voluntarily holding this without any financing behind me a fee of $40 is charged per term, this is payable before the first session. This charge is to cover the costs of using the Hackham West Community Centre bus for the sessions, which they kindly allow us to use for a very low cost!

Wednesday session attendees can make payment at the Hackham West Community Centre, located at 44 Glyniville Drive, Hackham West.

Monday session attendees can pay by bank transfer to Happy Snappers Adelaide prior to commencement.

BSB: 325 185

Account: 03674273

Name: John Alexander Mausolf

My formal name is John Alexander Mausolf, but I have a strong preference for using Alex as my given name. Please do not be alarmed about a different name being used on the bank account. It is still me!

Is your equipment insured, just in case a camera gets dropped or something gets damaged during a session ?

Whilst Happy Snappers Adelaide have arranged full coverage of our photographic equipment for theft & accidental damage we ask that every due care is taken with the equipment when using it in the sessions. This means making sure that the neck strap is around your neck at all times from the moment the camera is passed to you until you return it to the Happy facilitator at the end of the session.
In the event of an accident, equipment will then be out of use until replacement/s can be arranged. There is a $500 excess fee payable to the insurance company for replacements & in all honesty this is probably more than the cost of replacements, so we would ask that a participant help us out with the replacement cost to the best of their ability, if necessary. This is so that others are not affected by the loss of a piece of equipment.

Are the cameras heavy to hold ?

There are 5 DSLR’s which are the bigger cameras, they weigh about 700 grams each with their lenses attached, these have viewfinders that you normally need to look through to use them. There are also 3 much smaller Micro-Four-Thirds cameras & they weigh under 400 grams with their lenses attached, there are 2 of these with touchscreens for those that may potentially have eyesight challenges & the other one can operate via a viewfinder or with a live view on the rear screen.

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In late 2016, Alex through the amazing assistance of his supportive, nurturing and empowering PHaMS (Personal Helpers & Mentors Scheme) worker, created a weekly photography group in conjunction with a mental health NGO. It initially started as a simple thing, with the participants just using their mobile-phones. As time went on however, it became evident that those participants wanted the ability to use digital cameras, to enable them to explore their imagery further, but due to overwhelmingly low socio-economic means for them, that wasn’t possible. Alex had an idea, being the Social Innovator that he is! He reached out to his photography cohorts around the world and asked if they could spare some equipment or financial donations, so as to allow others that couldn’t afford it otherwise, the opportunity to explore digital photography as a regular wellness and social inclusion activity. The results were overwhelming! Within a few weeks, Alex had four cameras and lenses for them! Getting the participants to be able to use them proved to be an insurmountable obstacle however, as Alex was turned away from the mental health NGO, with them refusing him the ability to share his equipment with the participants. So much for the promised “co-design” and “evolving” ability for the group to become something the participants wanted, as the NGO promoted so heavily in their marketing materials!

Traumatised, dejected and without access to the one activity that was keeping him well, Alex withdrew into himself, isolating himself from the world, punishing himself for even trying to make a difference. After all, if the NGO saw Alex’s socially minded efforts as the actions of a troublemaker, formally requesting that he stay away from the one thing that was helping him live well, they must have been correct. Right?

If it had not been for the eternal assistance of his loving partner, and the incredible insights from his Psychotherapist, Alex would have kept believing this. Getting to a point of being able to see beyond the traumatic experience he had been subjected to sparked a new-found determination to take this simple idea of Mindfulness as achieved through the use of a digital camera out to the greater world at large. It was so easy in fact, that it was a complete shock that other community centre’s opened their doors and hearts to this grass-roots idea of wellness for all to be able to have access to. Alex arranged for there to be sessions held in a couple of locations, three times a week. A local Community Health organisation came to the party by assisting him with the use of their Public Liability cover to start off with. A community centre took him on as a volunteer and assisted with a venue, and transport, through the use of their minibus and volunteer drivers. Another community centre allowed him the use of their space for gratis!

Deciding to make a stand against the sort of bullying and denial of access to service that he received, Alex is now very actively involved with advocating for better treatment and respect of individuals that live with mental health challenges in their lives, through a broad range of groups, panels and movements. He is a lived experience representative on panels that influence change for better mental health outcomes. He has some huge dreams for those living with mental health challenges in the Southern suburbs of Adelaide, where he resides!

It is Alex’s hope that through this sharing of the evolution of Happy Snappers as an overcoming of what seemed to be the impossible to achieve, that it may in some way inspire others to follow their dreams to fruition, regardless of what people or organisations may present as seemingly impossible obstacles along the way.

Dream big, think laterally, don’t be scared to reach out & ask for assistance when you need it, keep going even when you’re told “NO!” & reach for the stars! Know that you can do it!

About Us

 1 Mad Idea

Alex Mausolf, the founder of Happy Snappers Adelaide has a lived experience of complex mental health challenges in his life. Digital photography has allowed Alex the opportunity to experience Mindfulness regularly & easily, it has also been a huge part of his journey to recovery. Sharing this experience of well-being with others is a driving passion for Alex. That there be true equity of access to this activity for all people is important to him & so it is delivered outside of the NDIS.


Alex has a past history of providing training through WEA & TAFESA adult community education units.


Alex is a Social Innovator, a Lived Experience Representative for SAHLN, & he was an invited speaker about the unique Happy Snappers initiative at the 2018 TheMHS Mental Health Conference. He is a vocal & active activist for better mental health treatment & rights for those living with mental health challenges in their lives through a variety of mental health advisory panels, bodies & social movements.

Alex is accompanied & supported by his large & friendly Assistance Dog in-training at all possible times. She is under a year old & is going through formal training to become his publicly accredited Assistance Animal. This process is an ongoing one.

Alex is also an accredited Standard Mental Health First Aider, something that all workplaces & community groups should have on hand. The lovely Happy Snappers Adelaide volunteer bus driver, Michelle, is also a Mental Health First Aider!







In the establishing stages, the focus on offering this unique & voluntary service solely to those that experience mental health challenges shifted to offering & delivering this to the broader community as a regular well-being activity & immersion in Nature, in conjunction with some gentle social interaction. Interestingly enough though, it turns out that most all of the participants identified in their own way as living with various aspects of mental health challenges or experiences in their own lives!


Simple guidance in the use of a digital camera can allow the user the ability to experience mindful photography, leaving the world, its intrusions & distractions behind as they immerse themselves in observation, exploration & stillness. Through the use of a digital camera, you are given a myriad of opportunities to express yourself visually. Things like being able to select how much of an image is in focus, how the light will play on the scene or object, the ability to zoom in on something, & much more is offered by a controllable digital camera. These are things that a mobile phone can not really offer. Studies have shown that this is an easily accessed state of being through the use of a camera. Alex has cited some studies & web postings about this on the (About) “Benefits” page.


Sharing his passion, enjoyment and excitement for photography through simple explorations of many techniques, styles & methods will surprise the participants in what they can achieve even if they have never picked up a camera before in their lives! Nurturing this learning & exploration of photography within the participants is assisted through the use of a broad range of cameras & equipment, with them ranging from full-on DSLR’s to the smaller & much lighter Micro-Four-Thirds format cameras. There’s a camera for every need that could be experienced, from poor eyesight & limited dexterity to chronic body movement, all of these situations can easily be overcome through the use of the right type of camera for the participants. Working from a tripod, for example, with assistance in framing up subjects or landscapes & in the camera’s operation allows all participants to achieve their photographic goals, regardless of physical limitations.


Inside activities are arranged easily & quickly if poor weather is too big a challenge to head outside, such as when it’s too hot or too wet.

With a past history of delivering adult community education training through organisations such as the Adelaide WEA & TAFESA in combination with having experienced mental health recovery assisted greatly by photography, Alex is passionate about sharing this wellness activity & creative exploration with others in simple & easy to digest ways.



Our Values:

  1. To provide an easy & safe exploration through digital photography, allowing the experience of Mindfulness.
  2. To act ethically, honestly & with the utmost integrity towards the participant at all times.
  3. To make accessible & create opportunities for Mindful experiences through digital photography regardless of financial ability or constraint.
  4. To provide the opportunity for individuals to learn about & participate in digital photography, even if they do not have the potential to possibly own any photographic equipment.
  5. To be known & respected as a driving & innovative force for the promotion of beneficial & meaningful experiences through digital photography.
  6. To build & foster a community & culture of like minded people.
  7. To be involved in & create a positive impact within local communities.
  8. To enable personal growth, learning, self improvement, & positive change whenever possible through the above.