Nikon Auckland Photo Day winners

Each year, for a 24-hour period, Auckland becomes the collective subject for the masses of photographers who reside in the city, competing in the Nikon Auckland Photo Day competition. This year the competition, held in conjunction with the Auckland Festival of Photography, found its winner in Dave Baker, whose image, Time for a Fag, was picked as the judge's champion amidst over 1000 other entries from throughout the metropolis.

All submissions to the competition are added to a collection the Festival has been amassing since 2004; this archive of images of Auckland and its communities throughout the years now totals more than 11,000.

First place: Dave Barker

Dave_Barker_DBarkerTime for a fag

Time for a Fag

Barker's image captures a newlywed couple snatching a relaxed moment together at Auckland's waterfront. The judges praised the image for its fortuitous timing and beautiful golden light, saying it was a photo that begs questions of people, customs, traditions, and consumption.

"It’s brilliant because of the multiple readings that can emerge from this single image," the judges report. "A split world of idealism versus reality."

As this year's champion Barker wins a Nikon D5300 DSLR with kit Nikkor AF-S DX 18-140mm VR lens.


Second place: Katie Quinney

Katie_Quinney_rugby people 2

Rugby People

Quinnley's second-place image takes the viewer into the stands during a rugby match at Eden Park, a quintessential Auckland experience. The judges enjoyed the image's narrative aspects as well as its idiosyncratic approach to subject.

"A decisive moment capturing a lone English supporter amidst a chaotic scene of varying reactions, made more intriguing by the reversed emphasis away from the game."

The photographer wins a Nikon 1 AW1 waterproof compact interchangeable lens camera for her efforts.


Third place: Chris van Ryn

 Chris_van_Ryn_Auckland Photo Day 1

Smoko Time

Venturing onto a construction site in the middle of the day, van Ryn's image captures the relaxed and light-hearted atmosphere of local workers taking a break.

"A building site becomes an outdoor lounge for three men relaxing, using wheelbarrows as loungers, it’s an outdoor setting with the intimacy of a living room," the judges report.

Third place prize is a Nikon Coolpix P340 compact camera.


People's Choice: Mirjam van Sabbe

Mirjam-van-Sabben-Through Fire And Water For You

Through Fire and Water For You

Following the official judging of the Nikon 2014 Auckland Photo Day competition, members of the public were invited to view this year's submissions and vote for their personal favourite from the top 30 submissions. Rising to the top in that category is van Sabbe's light painted-landscape at Piha beach.

As this year's People's Choice winner, she takes home a Nikon S9700 Coolpix Wi-Fi –anabled compact camera.

You can view the rest of the competition's top 30 entries here.

Writers by night: Brendan Kitto  

In his new exhibition at the Auckland Festival of Photography, Brendan Kitto combines his passion for photography and graffiti art. Night Visions gives viewers a look at the nocturnal world of graffiti artists as they go about their sometimes unappreciated craft. Brendan talks to D-Photo's Point-Shoot blog about putting the series together and some of the escapades it led him on.


D-Photo:  Can you give us a brief outline of what the Night Vision exhibition is all about?

Brendon Kitto: It's about what graffiti writers get up to while the rest of us are sleeping.

Are you a graffiti artist yourself?

Yes I am, I have been involved in the scene for the past 14 years. I am part of the TMD (The Most Dedicated) graffiti crew.

What is it about graffiti writing that makes for a good photographic subject?

It tends to be hidden from the public eye and the works that result are often very temporary, so if it's not captured , it's gone for ever.


Are the images in the exhibition all recent, or do they go back a way?

The work is all recent. I started shooting around February.

Where were the images taken?

The images were shot around the inner city of Auckland and the southern rail corridor.

Since you've been involved in the graffitti scene, how have you seen it change?

The scene in Auckland has changed a lot. But the biggest change was when the Rugby World Cup came to town, the council thought it was important to remove every aspect of graffiti, to me this has removed a lot of vibrance from the city.  But in saying that, the scene has moved to finding more obscure places to paint, which is great photo-wise.



Being the 'underground world of street art', do you ever run into graffiti writers resistant to having their picture taken?

No. As I have been a part of the scene for a considerable amount of time, and other writers know me.  I guess I have a trust within the writing community that I'm not going to post images revealing their identity.

There's often a lot of antagonism from the general public towards graffiti art – are you hoping to change hearts and minds with these images, or simply document?

Purely to document, to show a side people don't often get to see; writers in action

What sort of gear do you shoot with?

A mixture of digital and film:

Fuji X-Pro1 with a 27mm pancake lens

Olympus OM-1 with a 50mm lens & OM-2 with a 28mm

Canon AE-1 with a 50mm

Bronica ETRSi with a 50mm


What was the biggest challenge you faced in putting the project together?

Security Guards.

Do you have a favourite image from the exhibition, and why?

My favourite image would be the one I titled Retreat (above).

I headed out with four writers and we had to move as security was coming (we had seen them before they saw us). So we headed back down the train line to a safe point and watched what they were doing . A passenger train was approaching so we took cover inside the bush – the lights from the train carriages produced enough light to for me to get a shot of one of the writers assessing the situation whilst the train passed. The others took a nap in the grass waiting for the “all clear”. The writers were cool, calm and collected throughout the whole time – it brought back a sense of nostalgia.

What's next for you?

I currently have a pop up show at Studio 40 in Onehunga.

I'm also in the development stages of a book with artist Askew1 and have a few projects that I hope to have completed for the photography festival next year.


What other exhibitions are you looking forward to seeing at the festival?

Jos Wheeler – Voicing Dissent Great South Road at the Art Station Helen Clegg – The Bridge Gathers

Night Visions is currently showing and runs until June 12 at the Depot Artspace in Devonport

Auckland Festival of Photography programme launched

The programme for New Zealand's biggest celebration of all things photography has gone live today. The Auckland Festival of Photography has officially released the programme for its 2014 edition, running from May 29 to June 20, and completely free to the public.

As in previous years, the schedule consists of a curated Signature series of exhibitions, a Fringe programme of diverse local shows, and all manner of special events such as symposiums, photographer's talks, competitions, portfolio reviews and more.

This year the programme is available as a web publication, which you can view below.

Be sure to also pick up D-Photo no. 60 come May 19, where we, as proud media partner of the event, feature  our in-depth 'Insider's Guide to the Auckland Festival of Photography'.