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‘‘Home is where the knitting is’’ wins 2022 Auckland Photo Day

08 Jul 2022
‘‘Home is where the knitting is’’ wins 2022 Auckland Photo Day

This year’s Auckland Photo Day winners  have been decided: 

First prize:                           Hyun Duck Park, Knitting Lesson                

Second prize:                     Gao Tao, Forgotten Forest          

Third prize:                         Roy Cernohorsky, Flying to The Light

Auckland Festival of Photography’s annual 24-hour day in the life of Auckland competition took place on Saturday 11 June, with the hundreds of entries submitted adding to an archive of more than 14,000 unique images of Auckland taken since the competition began.  The announcement of 2022’s Auckland Photo Day winners marks the end of June’s successful festival, which included more than 65 online, in venue and outdoor exhibitions across the region, including many exploring the ‘disruption’ theme.

This year’s competition judges were: Dean Purcell, Chief Visual Journalist, NZ Herald; Julia Durkin, MNZM, Founder - Auckland Photo Day; and Paddy Foss, X Series Photographer + Fujifilm representative.

First prize:                           Hyun Duck Park, Knitting Lesson    

Judges’ comment: “This is such a colourful, humourous portrait, set in a winter’s day at home, with resplendent woolly hats, and knitting in hand. The image takes you into the heart of a comfy home which is full of warmth and the framing draws you into the two people sitting in their lounge learning to knit together. A wonderful image full of meaning.”

Winner’s details: Hyun Duck Park lives in Goodwood Heights, Manukau. Mr Park is a member of the Korean Photographic Association and has been taking photographs for the last ten years, often of Auckland landscapes. But miserable weather prompted a change of approach. “That day was rainy and cold so I couldn’t get outside. So I thought, okay, today we can take a picture inside and set the 10 second timer.” Selfie with his wife on the couch.

AFP director Julia Durkin says Auckland Photo Day has been running since 2004, and is part of a suite of open access projects that AFP has initiated that underpin its participation ethos.

“We want to congratulate this year’s Auckland Photo Day winners and all those who entered this year’s competition, and have added to an archive capturing our region’s diversity and communities over time. Thanks too to FUJIFILM for sponsoring camera prizes again this year. We also invited everyone to be the judge in our People's Choice online vote.” 

Second prize:                       Gao Tao, Forgotten Forest 

Judges’ comment: It’s almost mythical, with a fitting title. The image is a beautifully executed landscape that feels filmic in it’s style, magical and mystical eeriness in the canopy of the trees that dwarf the people walking below. An Auckland park as you’ve never seen it - quite outstanding.”

Winner’s details: Gao Tao lives in Schnapper Rock on the North Shore. A friend on social media suggested that Mr Tao  photograph Cornwall Park’s trees before they shed all their yellowing  leaves so, after checking the weather forecast, he set off that morning. After almost two hours of photographing Mr Tao was about to stop when sudden, heavy rain came. “It made the whole avenue misty, made the mood more attractive for photography.” Mr Tao  has entered Auckland Photo Day several times before and been shortlisted, but never been one of the top three winners. “So I will keep going,” he says.

Third prize:                         Roy Cernohorsky, Flying to The Light

Judges’ comment: “A beautifully balanced composition, speaking of past and present urban environment, using the light and colour palette to create a work of art from the everyday views.”

Winner’s details:  Roy Cernohorsky lives in Takanini and took this image - one of about 40 taken that day - in Fort Street, in the CBD. “I was interested in taking some abstract photography and fortunately a bird flew up and I got lucky,” he says of the image that won third prize. Mr Cernohorsky has entered the Auckland Photo Day competition about every two years during the last decade. “I’m a very visual person. I love all sorts of imagery  and find I can be quite creative in photography.”

People's Choice Prize 2022

Online voting in the Auckland Photo Day 2022 People’s Choice category decided the winner - Hernan Grabarnik, Light My Fire, won with the most valid votes. The image shows a cocktail being made at a Waiheke Island bar on the winter's night, Saturday 11th June. One of the few nightlife interiors entered this year. Hernan says he is delighted this image was also supported by the judges in the Top 30 and has won the People's Choice Prize: Instax Mini Evo + 100 shots of film. SRP $499. Total number of votes was 4186 during the People's Choice 2022. Thanks to everyone who voted.

Judges’ comments on shortlisted entries:


This year's top 30 images are curated to give real enjoyment and insight to our visual lives on Auckland Photo Day.

There is nature photography, with Kissing Birds at Sunset by Mengyuan Zhang from Blockhouse Bay, pets anticipating their owner’s arrival in  Waiting For You  by Callena Lewis from Taupaki, and pooches Licking My Way Through Life by Birkenhead’s Gaby Suhl.

There are orange mushrooms growing in the back garden of Dulanya Hansali Jayasekera. “I'm ten years old and I live in New Lynn, Auckland,” she wrote in her entry, “and I love to take photos of my neighbourhood, especially nature. This is the first time I'm entering so if I win I'm going to be surprised." Being selected in the 'best of’ shortlist is a great achievement for this young, first time entrant.

Included in the top 30 images selected in this year’s competition  are regular Saturday morning activities such as rugby games, horse riding at Muriwai, along with street photography portraits including protesters at the bottom of Queen Street seeking fairer migrant work visas, captured by Margaret Vickers of Pukekohe in Kids staying close to mum at the Protest.

There are everyday scenarios that capture both a universal and particular side of living in the Auckland region, from night market stalls to cool looking rubber gloves hanging to dry on a Narrow Neck washing line photographed by Poh Leong Koh.

Such photographs feature alongside abstract images such as the whimsical illuminated K Road Cone by Andrew Creegan of Parnell, and Hugh Jones The Umbrella, Millwater which uses composition and vibrant colours to great effect.

The diverse sampling of daily subject matter that makes up  2022’s  'best of’ Auckland Photo Day provides a great treat of visual stories about who we are as Aucklanders in June 2022.