Georgia Merton has succumbed to the allure of the mountains and now lives in Wanaka. Happiest writing about eccentric folk, interesting food and our environment. Currently attempting to master the art of compost. Read her work here.
Zack Black is a photographer based out of Montana in the U.S. He typically spends his time adventuring throughout Montana in the summers and then goes international for the winters. He is an avid fly-fisherman and outdoor enthusiast who has pursued and photographed trout for most of his life. Zack’s work has been featured in galleries and shows around the U.S. as well as Salt Water Fly Fishing magazine. He has dedicated his life to conservation and preserving the wild places of the world.
For the last 7 years, Erika Galpin worked as an acquisitions editor for several eBook companies. Before that she was a professionally published author and even won an international haiku contest. Now Erika is concentrating on her own writing.
Liz Breslin writes poems, plays, stories, reviews and a fortnightly column for the Otago Daily Times. Her first collection of poems, Alzheimer’s and a spoon, was published in 2017 by Otago University Press, and listed as one of the NZ Listener’s Top 100 Books the same year. Recent performances include Verb Wellington’s Litcrawl, Dunedin Writers & Readers Festival, WORD Christchurch and a tour of bars, bookshops and a fairy-lit skatepark in BC, Canada. www.lizbreslin.com
Originally from Newcastle-Upon-Tyne (UK), Bethany Rogers travelled the world a little before becoming 'stuck' in New Zealand. She writes and edits for magazines, particularly on her favourite topics of the arts and adventures. At night, she writes dark, short fiction. When she's not writing she can be found hiking, trail running, paddle boarding or boxing. She currently lives in Queenstown with a very large rabbit called Oscar Wilde.
Allan Uren lives in Wanaka. He’s a mountaineer, rock climber, skier, and in his spare time, a painter and decorator. He’s written stories for New Zealand Geographic, has a short story in a book, To The Mountains, a collection of New Zealand alpine writing and has had a column in Wilderness Magazine. Contact Allan on [email protected]
Annabel Wilson is a writer from Wanaka. Her first poetry collection, Aspiring Daybook, was published in 2018 by Makaro Press. It was longlisted for the 2019 Okham New Zealand Book Awards and won the NZ Mountain Film and Book Festival award in the Fiction/Poetry category. Her work has also appeared in journals in NZ and overseas. Her play No Science to Goodbye was performed at the Southern Lakes Festival of Colour, BATS and Te Pou theatre. Annabel has been awarded the RAK Mason fellowship at NZ Pacific Studio, the inaugural Australasian Association of Writers’ Programmes Emerging Writers’ Prize and a residency at the Robert Lord Writers’ Cottage. She runs a NZ arts, adventure and culture guide at www.onmag.co.nz
Samantha Montgomerie is a poet based in Macandrew Bay, Dunedin. Her work has appeared in numerous publications, including Nga Kupu Waikato: An Anthology of Waikato Poetry, takahe and Landfall. She is also a published author of fiction for children. When she is not writing, she enjoys roaming the forests and mountain tracks around the country.
Teresa Angell is a freelance photographer based out of Raumati Beach in New Zealand. A passionate action photographer of animals, wildlife and dogs. She is currently photographing and researching the history of the Sled Dog Racing community in New Zealand, to publish a pictorial book later in 2020. When not immersed in her projects, Teresa enjoys time with family, the beach, mountain biking and riding her motorbike. teresaangell.co.nz
Erin Maessen is a science writer based in Taranaki, and has recently completed a Masters in Science in Society at Victoria University. She is interested in science, people, and the way they interact, particularly in relation to conservation and the environment. She enjoys tramping, but especially likes stopping to look for birds and insects along the way, and loves all native creatures especially the weird ones. Find her at erinmaessen.nz
Ian Loughran has poems published regularly in the Otago Daily Times, as well as in Down in Eden and Fire and Ice, and he has had musical compositions set to his poems by classical and alternative rock composers. Ian is also a playwright, comedy writer and stand-up comic. Two of his two short plays have been produced and performed in Dunedin: the award-nominated Last Postcard from Cuba and Head Full of Toys. Ian produces and hosts two radio shows: the specialist poetry show ‘All Good Poems Wear Travelling Shoes’ and a music show ‘Sidewalking’ .
Neil Kirby came to New Zealand from the UK in 2005, by accident. And stayed. He lives in Otatara with his wife, 3 young children and 5 sheep. When he's not changing nappies or pretending he knows how to use power tools in his workshop, he runs his own Marketing & Brand consultancy business, the curiously named Atticus Road. Web: www.atticusroad.co.nz. Facebook: @atticusroad. Twitter: @atticusroad
Pallas Hupé Cotter was an Emmy award-winning former TV news reporter and anchor in the USA. Now she’s an award-winning speaker, writer and founder of a personal leadership development and strategic messaging consultancy, called POP. Pallas’ personal essays have been published in The Spinoff, The New Zealand Herald, Huffpost Australia, and Cultural Weekly. She’s also authored two books: The POP Process: Discovering Your Passion, Purpose & Personality and Discovering Yourself in New Zealand, Inspiration for Reinventing Your Life.
Originally from the antipodes of New Zealand (Portugal), Pedro Pimentel travelled a bit of the world working as a Mechanical Design Engineer, taking photographs and making videos of climbers and other adventurers before calling Wanaka home five years ago. His adventure photography work has been featured and published in numerous publications around the world like Nat Geo, The Guardian UK, The Daily Telegraph and The Sun, amongst others. Pedro is the creative brain behind his video production agency Katalyst Media, and his work recently went viral with the Wanaka Floods Daily Drone Episodes.
Ross Mackay started shooting photo and video for fun in 2012, then people started calling. He officially made a business of it in 2014 and has been running ever since. He has shot still and moving images all over the world in some of the hottest, coldest and highest parts of our amazing planet. According to Ross, “It provides me with a creative outlet that I hadn’t quite found in life, the variety of work and the people I have been involved with is quite incredible, long may it continue!" rossmackay.nz
Shayne Galloway is a recovering academic who splits his time between Dading, consulting in recreation, and photography. Based in Queenstown, Shayne pursues landscapes and portraits that are a bit different and - if he can get away with it - in black and white. He applies his training in leisure theory via mountain biking, skiing, and Jiu Jitsu. If you’d like to see more of his work go to: shaynegalloway.com
Claire Lacey is a Canadian writer. Her first poetry collection, Twin Tongues, won the Robert Kroetsch Award for Innovative Poetry. Her second book, Selkie, is a graphic novel collaboration with artist Sachie Ogawa. Claire is currently pursuing a PhD on the topic of brain injury and poetry at the University of Otago, New Zealand. Web: poetactics.blogspot.com. Twitter: @poetactics
Based in Wanaka, Fiona Murray spends as much time as she can in the mountains, while design and art keeps her ticking during down time. She says, “like a lot of people, I need art as an outlet for everything going on in my head, it allows my thoughts to become 3D and lets me process them better. Between sports, adventure, study and art/design, I can stay inspired and be creative in so many different ways, and am always looking for more.” Instagram: @fizzymuzza
Jason Beacham first came to Wanaka nearly 20 years ago chasing winters and living the ski bum lifestyle. After a wee stint back in his homeland, he moved back to New Zealand, started a family, and eventually found himself returning to Wanaka four years ago. Now a full time photographer and media man, he splits his time being behind the lens, enjoying the Southern Alps, and creating new dad jokes for his daughter to be ashamed of.
Instagram: @208media Facebook: @208medianz
Jillian Sullivan lives in the Ida Valley, Central Otago, in a strawbale house she built with her son-in-law Sam. A writer of creative non-fiction, fiction and poetry, her thirteenth book, Map for the Heart - Ida Valley Essays, is due out with Otago University Press in 2020. Web: jilliansullivan.co.nz
A writer, songwriter and poet based in Central Otago, Laura Williamson is the editor of 1964: mountain culture / aotearoa. She co-wrote The Blue Moments Project song and spoken word cycle, and her book The Bike and Beyond: Life on Two Wheels in Aotearoa New Zealand is out now as part of the BWB Text series. Facebook: facebook.com/willwritefor Instagram: @laura_willwritefor
Born and raised in the bush in the far north of New Zealand, Lennon Bright has always had a fascination with the outdoors. He first picked up a camera to document his adventures through photographs, only to realise he had found the creative outlet he didn't know he was searching for. Lennon likes to shoot most things, especially the outdoor sports and activities he is passionate about. Living in Wanaka now provides him no shortage of fun things to point a camera at. Web: lennonbright.com
Sue Wootton lives in Dunedin. Her most recent publications are her novel, Strip, and her fifth poetry collection, The Yield, which were listed for the Ockham NZ Book Awards in 2017 and 2018 respectively. Sue edits the medical humanities e-zine ‘Corpus: Conversations about Medicine and Life’ found at corpus.nz. More about her work and how to purchase her books on her website: suewootton.com.
Wanaka-based writer Tim Brewster is the founder and editor of The Good South - thegoodsouth.co.nz - a locals' guide for visitors to the lower South Island. Originally from Dunedin, Tim has written extensively about travel and adventure and runs his own digital marketing copywriting business. He has worked in skiing and tourism for decades and enjoys paddleboarding, mountain biking and cooking curry. Web: timbrewster.co.nz
Mark Thomas is 55 years old and lives in Hawea Flat with his wife Janey, dog Kramer and ginger cat Big Eddy. He earns a living as a chimney sweep, and spends his free time chasing swell, wind and snow. Other interests include a burgeoning belief in the right of all New Zealanders to good mental health, and he campaigns quietly for more openness and honesty around mental illness. He is a former newspaper reporter. Photo credit: Andy Cole
Leslie Eaton is an award winning graphic artist tucked away in the tiny community of Metchosin, Canada. She has over 25 years of experience in print and advertising. Her work has reached as far as NYC (and
now NZ!). When not in front of a computer you can find her coaching archery, fishing, walking forest trails with her dogs, practising some form of fibre-arts or painting medieval illumination recreations, all while being a military spouse and TCB.
Photo: Susan Robertson
Hayden is a full-time professional photographer living in the beautiful Catlins, New Zealand. He concentrates on weddings and portraits in the summer, which allows him to focus on surf and landscape during the winter months.
Facebook: hayden.blacklabelphotography Instagram: hayden.blacklabelphotography/
Oscar is 20 years old and has been creating images since he was about 14. He has a great passion for the outdoors, and loves shooting all aspects of the ocean, and the lifestyles and sports that surround it. Whenever he is not shooting in the water or on land, he’s surfing, swimming or planning the next adventure.
Web: oscarhetheringtonvisuals.com Instagram: oscar.hetherington
Scott Kennedy is a card-carrying multipotentialite, splitting his time between various creative projects, including working as a writer, photographer, installation artist, musician, filmmaker, educator and event planner. And, let’s be honest, he drinks a lot of coffee. Born in Canada, Scott has called Queenstown home since 2002. His words and images have appeared in numerous publications over the years, writing about topics as diverse as travel (remember that?), politics, adventure sport, art and culture. He is the co-founder of the post-rock band / art project EchoKnot, which released their first album, Under a Mountain, in 2019.
Web: scottkennedy.nz Twitter: @ScottKennedyNZ
Ilja Herb is a Canadian artist currently based in Wellington, where he teaches photography at Massey University. His work has appeared in National Geographic, Geo, Outside, Powder and Bike magazines, and he has led community filmmaking projects in Ghana and South Africa on issues related to environmental governance and policy. Other recent work includes a visual media project documenting ecological impacts that come with the return of the sea otter in indigenous communities in coastal BC and Alaska. When not photographing chainsaws and outboard motors, Ilja can be found sailing the Canada’s West Coast aboard his temperamental sailboat Foxy.
Web: iljaherb.com Instagram: @iljaherb
Having graduated with a BA (English & Art History) from the University of Otago, Michelle worked in sales and marketing until 2004, when she followed her dream and became co-owner and Managing Director of the Artist’s Room Fine Art Gallery and The Framers Room Studio in Dunedin. An emerging photographer, she also co-founded the Dunedin and Otago Fonebooks. Both were bestsellers, and the Dunedin Fonebook was the highest selling self- published book in Aotearoa in 2016/17.
Wānaka-based mountain guide and adventure photographer Gavin Lang owns and operates First Light Guiding and is currently working on a project called Seeking The Light, for which he is climbing the
24 New Zealand peaks higher than 3000 metres. He plans to write a book and produce a documentary to tell the story of the mental health benefits of adventure, challenge, and time spent in nature.
Facebook: facebook.com/gavinlangphotography Instagram: gavinlangphotography
Camilla is a photographer who lives on her husband's family merino station in Tarras. She loves to photograph adventures, but more recently has turned her art towards documenting the regenerative farming movement. She has travelled around the country photographing positive farming stories to be part of an exhibition that will tour New Zealand this autumn.
Web: healtheearthnz.com | camillarutherford.co.nz
Emile is an artist, photographer and outdoorsman based in Queenstown. He makes imagery around his interest in the beauty of natural landscapes and their relationships with light and shadow. With a unique eye for detail, his tight compositional style tends to capture intermediary areas between environments, cultivating a sense of curiosity and a desire within the viewer to understand the full picture. Emile is currently hiking the Te Araroa Trail.
Born in 1949, Cilla McQueen has lived in Te Waipounamu for most of her life. After formative years in Dunedin and some travel, she settled in Motupōhue, Bluff, in 1996. A poet, teacher and artist, her honours and awards include a Fulbright Visiting Writer’s Fellowship, two terms of the Robert Burns Fellowship, a Goethe Institut Scholarship to Berlin, three New Zealand Book Awards (1983, 1989, 1991), Hon.LittD Otago 2008, and the Prime Minister’s Award for Literary Achievement in Poetry 2010. She was named National Library New Zealand Poet Laureate 2009 -11. In 2020 she was honoured with an MNZM for services as a poet. Her latest book of poetry, Poeta, was published by Otago University Press in 2018.
Jasmine O M Taylor [she/her] is a pākehā, bisexual, Pilates-enthusiast poet with a day job. She lives in Ōtepoti with her true love and two ridiculous cats. Jasmine is a member of Dunedin’s Octagon Collective and you can find some of her work in Landfall, NZPS Anthology 2018, Catalyst, Overcommunicate, Mayhem Literary Journal, Poetry NZ Yearbook 2021, blackmail press, and takahē.
Lizzie Carruthers draws on her farming career to bring wit and playfulness to her art, showing her subjects in a joyful light. These bright paintings are rendered in luscious oils, illustrating characters with interesting life stories.
Nathan Weathington is the co-founder and publisher of 1964 and also the author of Where the Hell Were Your Parents? and Invasion of the Bastard Cannibals (Winner of the Bronze Medal for Humour at the 2016 IPPY Awards).
He has worked as a civil engineer, bartender, math teacher, secretary, publisher of several newspapers/magazines in British Columbia, and a smart-ass astrologer named Mr. Asstrology. As an up-and-coming media mogul, he responsibly decided to ditch his career to pursue the untold riches of becoming a stay-at-home dad and author. Nathan now lives with his family in lower Albert Town where he pursues his obsession with fly fishing.
Peta Carey spent 20+ years making documentaries in NZ and various other corners of the globe, at the same time as writing freelance features. She published her first book, A Place for the Heart, in 2017, and just recently published Tamatea Dusky (see Chapter 19, 'Seabirds, Beyond Tamatea' for her story of grey-backed storm petrel). She lives just outside Queenstown, high on a hill, with her daughter and her dog; loves time in the hills, skiing, tramping and climbing (“only safe stuff”), mainly in Fiordland and Mt Aspiring National Parks, close to home.
An award-winning freelance writer, photographer and tour guide originally from Oxford, UK, Richard is on hiatus from chasing the wheels of the professional peloton across Europe at events like the Tour de France. He and his partner Genny can now be found biking, hiking and writing in the forests and mountains of the South Island from their van, Mizzie.
Bill Nelson lives in Wellington with his partner and two children. He likes to spend his time in either the mountains, or the sea, and he puts up with the inevitable places in between. He is a co-creator of Up Country: A Journal for the New Zealand Outdoors, which was started by a few friends around a borrowed boardroom table and a six pack of cheap beer. ‘How to do just about anything’ first appeared in his book of poetry, Memorandum of Understanding, published by VUP in 2016.
Web: upcountry.co.nz or vup.victoria.ac.nz/memorandum-of-understanding
Iona Winter (Waitaha) lives on the East Otago Coast. Her hybrid work is widely published and anthologised in literary journals internationally. She has authored three collections, Gaps in the Light (2021), Te Hau Kāika (2019), and then the wind came (2018). Skilled at giving voice to difficult topics, she often draws on her deep connection to land, place and whenua.
A teller of stories using light and motion, Joe has had a camera in his hand since he learnt to walk on the bumpy streets of South Auckland. He is now a filmmaker and cinematographer based in the stunning alpine town of Wānaka. He is a creative thinking, whisky drinking, Swanndri wearing kinda guy who has an extensive background working on news and broadcast, TV series production and documentary production.
Nick grew up in the mountains around Wakatipu: Kawarau, Coronet, Pikirakatahi. Despite a taste of the Himalayas and Europe, it’s the Southern Alps he considers home. The bliss of the mountains inspires photography and poetry. When not at altitude, he’s probably on a vineyard or in a winery.
Whitney Thurlow is a mountain guide fully-qualified by the IFGMA, NZMGA, SPCA, OMG, NASA, CAPTCHA and YOLO. On social media he can be found @ (at) Rhyme and Reason Brewery.
Lou is an ocean, surf and adventure lifestyle photographer based in Mount Maunganui. She is fascinated by the colours and light that are cast across the sky and on the water in blue and golden hours. Find her on the beach or in the ocean at first light, no matter the season or water temperature. While her focus is on capturing fragments of time spent with nature, she loves to document adventures around New Zealand and beyond with her partner, as well as surf sessions with fellow ocean-loving wahine.
Web: louloubphoto.com Instagram: @louloubphoto
Mickey moved to Wānaka in 1996 to finish high school and to be close to the mountains. Chasing winters and racing gates for years led him to a university scholarship in Lake Tahoe, where he studied digital art. A couple of winters in Revelstoke, Canada gave Mickey a taste of backcountry skiing, and he developed a love for documenting adventure and the life around it with a camera. In between photographing winter adventures, weddings and commercial projects, Mickey likes to slow down and capture the places and situations surrounding him using older film cameras.