Robert Irwin’s raw confession about his dad: ‘All I’ve ever wanted’

Publish Date
Monday, 13 November 2023, 2:01PM
Photo / Getty Images

Photo / Getty Images

Robert Irwin has opened up about his hopes to step out of his famous dad’s big shadow - while still upholding his life’s work.

The 19-year-old star has been in the spotlight of late - returning from a high-profile presenting gig with Prince William in Singapore and being named as the latest I’m A Celebrity co-host - and is making headlines thanks to his multiple red carpet appearances alongside his girlfriend Rorie Buckey.

Chatting to the Courier Mail on Saturday, Steve Irwin’s son revealed – along with conservation – photography is his greatest passion, reports

In fact, his debut photography book, Robert Irwin’s Australia, hit bookshelves last year and was met with rave reviews. He even received multiple wildlife photography awards and had his pictures published in Australian Geographic magazine.

“You know, all my life all I’ve ever wanted was to be exactly like Dad, but also to find my own place in his world,” Irwin shared.

“I was just itching to find that place, and photography gave me that. But it also gave me a connection to Dad, and a purpose.

“How do I use these images to push Dad’s legacy of wildlife protection? Because everything he did, everything he recorded, everything he documented, well, it kind of stopped, and it stopped abruptly, which is what happens when someone dies unexpectedly. And this is one of my ways of continuing his work.”

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Robert Irwin wasn't even three years old when his father was killed at the age of 44 by a stingray. Photo / Instagram

Irwin – who started taking pictures as a kid and got his first digital camera for his 10th birthday – also confessed that he’s extremely hard on himself.

“I wanted to do [a book] for a long time, but I knew I didn’t have enough imagery,” Irwin revealed.

“For every 10,000 images I take, there [are] maybe one or two I like. No one is more critical of my photos than me. I wanted to tell a story of Australia and its landscapes and wildlife and all the challenges it faces through photos, and I knew that if I wanted to tell it properly, those photos had better be good.”

Irwin’s moving interview comes just a few days after he and Buckey were snapped on the green carpet alongside Prince William while attending the annual Earthshot Awards in Singapore.

The well-known conservationist – who had the privilege of being one of the presenters at the awards – was seen grinning and speaking with the future King prior to the ceremony.

Irwin shared a collection of pictures of him and his girlfriend together on Instagram after the ceremony, dubbing it an “unforgettable night”.

“What an unforgettable night presenting at the @earthshotprize awards in Singapore,” he captioned the post.

“Thank you to His Royal Highness Prince William for having @roriebuckey and I, and a big thanks to the incredible team, fellow presenters and hosts. A night of hope for the future of our environment”.️

This article was first published by the NZ Herald and is republished here with permission. 

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