A roadie to Rotoiti and some speedy editing has nabbed a national title for a young Blenheim photographer.
17-year-old Alex Marshall took the top spot in the youth category of the ANZ Sony 2020 Alpha Awards with his image, ‘A Celebration of Solitude’.
And with only four hours to execute and edit the shoot, Alex says the competition tested his skills- but he took the perfect shot first time.
“I had a few locations in mind before I was given the theme,” he says.
“I chose to shoot this image at Nelson National Lakes park, I’ve wanted to capture something like this for some time, and my goal was to take a less traditional approach to the theme, one that shows the joy in solitude.
“At the lake we lucked out with conditions.
“It was overcast with some nice light coming through the clouds.”
He roped in his mate, Jack, as the model – who handily has a family bach nearby where Alex edited the shot.
Alex, a boarder at Scots College in Wellington says he had about two hours to edit, after traveling from Blenheim and convincing Jack to dive into the freezing water.
“Because you have a specific theme, it challenges your creativity and it challenges the way you shoot.
“It really encourages you to get out there,” he says.
“I entered last year and got two images through to the short list but unfortunately didn’t get through to the finals.
“I wanted a go at the finals, so I entered again this year.”
Alex says he has been using a camera for years but got serious about photography about three years ago.
The title, a $1700 Sony A6400 Camera kit and $2,000 worth of Sony Alpha camera gear was the reward.
A top Marlborough music festival has been forced to cancel amid safety concerns.
The Southern Jam Youth Jazz Festival has been called off due to coronavirus fears.
But organisers have promised something fun to fill the gap.
Uncertainties surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic left “too many unknown variables” for the festival to proceed, organisers say.
The week-long youth jazz festival and competition, featuring young musicians from high schools all around the South Island, has been a staple of the Marlborough event calendar for many years.
“After careful consideration and in close collaboration with the Marlborough District Council, the decision has been made to cancel Southern Jam this year,” the announcement, on Facebook, says.
The festival would see students performing at bars and restaurants before a gala performance at the ASB theatre.
“The safety of our students, staff and the public continues to be our number one priority and the current uncertainties regarding the COVID-19 situation leaves too many unknown variables at this point in time.”
Talented students who have made outstanding contributions to culture have been honoured for their efforts.
Marlborough Girls’ College students were recognised for their achievements across a wide range of artistic categories last week.
Among those officially recognised were a trio of accomplished musicians.
Year 13 student Eleanor Grigg was named the Cultural Achiever of the Year after an exceptional year of musical achievements.
The musician was crowned under 19 champion for the tenor horn at the National Brass Band Championships in July.
She also came second in the Champion of Champions, competing against entrants playing a diverse range of instruments.
Year 10 student Lauren Doherty was awarded the All Round Endeavour in Performing Arts (Junior) for her contributions as an individual and in the jazz band. Lauren has been involved in house drama, the jazz band and placed 3rd at the annual talent quest performing on the electric violin.
She also won the Junior Instrumental prize in the school performing arts competitions.
Year 9 student Claire Lee was awarded a piano scholarship after coming first in the junior piano solo at the school competitions. She also studies violin and is a dedicated member of the Marlborough Civic Orchestra.
She is training as a concertmaster for the Upbeat Development Orchestra on violin.