CPotY Snapshots: Rick Spencer

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Rick Spencer

Structure semi finalist

Behind the camera
Growing up in the city’s eastern suburbs Rick Spencer fondly recalls the smell of freshly baked pies wafting in on a northerly, and afternoons jumping from the Seatoun Wharf into the waves. 

These days he’s kept busy working at a family business, but has travelled a fair bit around New Zealand and its these experiences which have spurred on his interest in photography. Rick’s photos have twice won him Auckland Camera Centre competition, and in 2021 he won the People’s Choice at the Asia Pacific Photography Awards.

Why photography?
The combination of “creativity and gadgetry” is what drew Rick to photography, starting with several night classes and some private mentoring. He is active member within The Wellington Photographic Society (WPS), and commends community clubs such as this. “Wellington has a lot to offer any photographer – there is plenty of choice.”

The snap
‘Turnbull’ was taken as part of Journal of a City, a personal project of Rick’s, compromising of street scenes and architectural shots. Although “not as grand” as others, Rick has always admired the Turnbull building, for its “vital role as guardian of important artefacts.”

The weather was not Rick’s side when he set out to take this shot, struggling with the flat light available. Until “suddenly the clouds parted, and for a short while the early morning sunlight illuminated the buildings texture.”

Judges thoughts
Te Papa curator Athol McCredie said, “the light on the old building gives it a living sort of presence despite being surrounded by massive towers. The passing cyclist is the icing on the cake.”


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