Two local women are part of a push to promote the diversity of Australia’s Indigenous arts.

An established writer from Malabar and an up-and-coming photographer from Chifley were the guests of honour at last week’s Australia Council’s National Indigenous Arts Awards.

Dr Anita Heiss received a major award for literature, and a $45,000 grant over two years to research and produce her next two works, including her memoirs.

It will be called Am I Black Enough For You and will unpack a lot of issues about Indigenous identity in the 21st century, she said.

Dr Heiss, who has been writing and studying writing for almost two decades and is well known for her work in the women’s literature genre, said she had been humbled by the award.

Crisse Longbottom, of Chifley, received the Qantas Young and Emerging Indigenous Arts Award and $10,000 for her efforts with the camera.

Ms Longbottom, 21, who is a relative newcomer to photography, said she was surprised to win the gong, which has encouraged her to continue her studies and future plans.

This year I am going to focus on my younger brother’s football team, the La Perouse United under-15s rugby league team, and at the end of the season I am going to have an exhibition with all the photographs, she said.

Ms Longbottom said she enjoyed sports photography because she was good at it and it allowed her to shoot unique childhood moments.

It’s all about the young kids. I have two kids of my own, so I know how important it is to capture every part of their lives.