Download FOTOFEST exhibition map here

To Inspire



Celebrating Emma Stannard

Do you have any photographers you follow or admire that inspire you ?
Fellow Hawke’s Bay photographers Andrew & Liz Caldwell really inspired me when I was first starting out. The reason I purchased a camera was to be able to take long exposure captures mainly to capture the incredible night sky. Their Long Exposure and Astrophotography work was and continues to be awe inspiring. I now follow around 300 photographers on Instagram from around the world and every single one of them inspires me for different reasons.

What is your favourite time of day or location to shoot?

Favourite location to shoot has to be the magnificent Te Mata Peak.

Phone or SLR  ? preference/ reason why for you

Mirrorless. My first and current camera is a Sony a6000. I love that it’s so compact; with the kit lens it fits in my jacket pocket. But it’s also perfect for Astrophotography.

One tip that is always your go to when shooting

Look around. My favourite captures are always photos I never planned on getting.

Out of the photographs you are providing, tell us about one of them. How and where you shot it, time of day, anything that inspired you to get this shot.

La Luna. It was the first time I had taken out my camera after a bit of a hiatus. My husband and I had finally managed to fall pregnant for the first time but we devastatingly lost our baby boy during my second trimester and I felt like all the joy had been taken from the world. Photography has always made me happy so my amazing husband inspired me to get back out there as I was really struggling with depression at that point. I decided to go up Te Mata peak to get some light trail shots at sunset, as it was a photo I’d always wanted to get. Sitting in the tall grass with my tripod and camera, I turned around in the opposite direction and noticed the stunning pastel dusk sky as night started to fall and a beautiful full moon started to rise. It was such a mesmerising sight and I loved playing with the focus between the moon and the long strands of grass. “Be fearless in the pursuit of what sets your soul on fire” is one of my favourite quotes and being out that night capturing those images reminded me of my passion and how much happiness photography brings me.

What do you enjoy most about taking photographs?

Getting lost in the beauty of our breathtakingly beautiful world. I love nature photography as nature is forever changing; but there is something magical about being able to capture a moment forever.