Jack Gardiner ACS (1921-1996)

Inducted into ACS Hall of Fame – 1997

Jack became interested in photography in his early teens, getting his first camera in 1935 on his 14th birthday. Thus the seeds for his future in the motion picture industry were sown.

His first job after leaving school in 1936 was at Snow’s Drapery Emporium, on the corner of Pitt & Liverpool St, Sydney where his father was employed, but he was not content. So in 1937 when he heard that Cinesound Studios at Bondi Junction were looking for a junior to fill a position in their film processing laboratory, Jack applied, and succeeded in getting the job.

In 1938 an attractive young girl named Nita Bertram joined Cinesound in the Film Examining Room. Jack and Nita were soon attracted to each other, they wed in June 1942 and gave birth to three children, Christopher, Calvin and Jenni. Calvin and Chris both have successful film careers, while Jenni is involved with Internet Technology.

Over the next 11-12 years Jack learnt a great deal about all aspects of film production, spending a great deal of time not only in the laboratory, but also in the camera and editing departments of Cinesound. In late 1948 he left Cinesound and teamed up with well known editor Alex Ezard on the McCreadie Bros feature film “Another Dawn” followed in 1949 by another McCreadie feature “Into the Straight”, then in 1955 Jack was appointed as co-editor with Alex Ezard and Pam Bosworth on the acclaimed Charles Chauval classic “Jedda”

Jack then joined Kinelab followed by Kingcroft Productions where he photographed and directed numerous documentaries including the acclaimed “Deep in the Heart” in 1956 and “Pearl of Barossa” for which he won the 1965 ACS Kodak Trophy for Best Cinematography. In the early 1970s Jack took over total ownership of the 16mm colour print laboratory Colour Transcriptions, and operated it through to his retirement in 1986.

Jack was a founding member of the ACS and a long serving dedicated committee member. Jack played a major role in the development of the society and served as NSW and Federal President in the years 1969, 1972, 1976-1977. Jack was ACS accredited in 1963 and posthumously inducted into the ACS Hall of Fame in 1997.

Jack Gardiner ACS was an industry icon and a remarkable gentleman who was much admired by all that knew him. Jack was always prepared to share his knowledge and was mentor to many young persons in the industry, several of whom went on to become leading cinematographers. Jack died peacefully in June 1996.