President’s Report – November 2014

Greetings ACS members, colleagues and friends,

Greeting ACS colleagues and friends,

Here we are in November – Melbourne Spring Racing Carnival month and, on the ACS calendar, our ACS Awards for Cinematography presentations, held on every Saturday until the end of November.

If you haven’t already booked, please do so to support the work of our cinematographers and as a thanks to all the dedicated committee members who work tirelessly to organise and stage these prestigious Awards presentations.


One of many Fannie Bay, NT sunsets – not to be missed! Picture courtesy: David Wakeley ACS

But let’s not forget about late October quite so soon!! It was when the inaugural NT Awards for Cinematography were held in Darwin. The Awards presentation was held on a very balmy Friday October 24 evening in the very flash Darwin Entertainment Centre, and was followed on the Saturday by a Ray Martin AM Retrospective and a Russell Boyd ACS ASC screening/Q&A of The Way Back at Charles Darwin University.

Around 80 Territorians attended the Awards plus a few distinctive Southerners hanging around the ridges. There were many highlights that included an inspirational opening address from NT President, Andrew Hyde, a very emotional “Welcome to Country” from Larrakia elder Gary Lang who was the 2014 NAIDOC Lifetime Achiever recipient. There was a performance by the indigenous group ONE MOB who performed indigenous dances and enthralled the audience with their passionate display. At one point I looked across and I’m certain I saw Marianne Wakeley wiping a tear from her eye, so there is no doubt that this truly was an emotional time for many who were in attendance.

The inspirational ONE MOB performs for the NT Awards audience. Picture courtesy: Ted Rayment ACS


It never ceases to amaze me just how calm and supportive Ray Martin is, particularly at these events. Ray is a consummate gentleman, and it is difficult to put into words just how much he means to all of us within the ACS. Thanks again Ray.

Both Russell Boyd and Geoff Burton spoke eloquently and with great feeling about cinematography and the industry here in Australia, but for Geoff it centred particularly on the Territory, where funding for the local industry is at a premium, and really should be addressed. I thank them both for their generosity of spirit and their overwhelming support of the NT Awards.

LHS – Russell Boyd ACS ASC and Ray Martin, TOP RIGHT – Geoff Burton ACS, MIDDLE – Russell Boyd ACS ASC, Stefan Sedlmeier, Ron Johanson ACS, Andrew Hyde and Ernie Clark ACS, BOTTOM – Ron J.

The night belonged to the winners of the various categories, including our first ACS CineKids recipient, the prodigious Maxim Hussey who attended with his father Stephen Cavanagh, who also received 2 Bronze plaques, Tim Wood who won 1 Gold plaques and 2 Silvers, the very popular NT President, Andrew Hyde with 1 Gold, 2 Silver and a Bronze, Chris Tangey a Gold for very evocative “Song for Grace” and 2 Bronze plaques, Simon Manzie received 2 Gold and 2 Silver and the Judges Award winner Dylan McDonald, who also received 3 individual Gold plaques.

NT Awards Student Cinematography winner Nathaniel Kelly with Ray Martin. Picture: Andrew’s dad, Clive Hyde

It really was a successful and a fantastic evening and full credit must go to the dedicated and progressive NT Branch committee for their tireless efforts. Led by the unstoppable Andrew Hyde, the hard working, committed team of Jennifer Richards, Ian Richards, Ian Redfearn, Stephen Cavanagh, Alex Novak, Tim Wood, Sam Chen and Clive Hyde along with all the members of the NT Branch committee, both here and in the Alice, brought these NT Awards for Cinematography to fruition. A special note of thanks also to David Wakeley (DW) ACS for his valued contribution to the success of this inaugural NT Awards presentation, and to ARRI Australia GM, Stefan Sedlmeier for making his first visit to Darwin to be part of the Awards event.

But it wasn’t only about Awards. It was about bringing a diverse and multi cultural community together in order to celebrate together something that was achieved with great success. Which reminds me how important it is to remember that the ACS Awards for Cinematography as we know them today were the brainchild of our ACS Historian and Past Federal & State President; Ron Windon ACS. As a Society we are justifiably proud to have an Award system that continues to evolve and covers all fields of cinematography, from CineKids to Feature films, along with the work of all those fine cinematographers that specialise in Wildlife & Nature, Virtual Cinematography, Experimental & Specialised, News & Current Affairs as an example.

Our ACS Awards are important and vital for the growth of not only the Society, but also those cinematographers who enter to have their work judged by their peers.

NT AWARDS GOLD WINNERS – Maxim Hussey (CineKids), Nathaniel Kelly (Student Cinematography), Andrew Hyde, Tim Wood, Mitchell Woolnough and Ian Redfearn. Picture courtesy-Clive Hyde


A RAY MARTIN RETROSPECTIVE was held on the Saturday morning after the NT Awards at the Hilton Hotel in Darwin. The morning was attended by around 25 guests who listened intently, and with great interest, as Ray took us through his experiences as a journalist, but more importantly as a photographer. Ray certainly has a fantastic “eye” and an extraordinary capacity to capture the moment, particularly in those areas of the world that are troubled and people require help and support.

Ray spoke for around 90 minutes about his experiences and the people he has had the opportunity to meet and to work with. Ray is a big fan of the Lumix and the new Panasonic cameras, but he has a large array of lenses that he puts to good use. This is evident in the quality of his photographs, which really does impress.

“A breathtaking mountain lake called Largo de los Tres, high in the Argentinian Andes. Two days hiking, but sunrise was worth every step.” Photo: Ray Martin

After Ray Martin’s Retrospective, the late afternoon was the opportunity to watch and listen to RUSSELL BOYD ACS ASC, who hosted a screening/Q&A of his latest collaboration with Peter Weir, THE WAY BACK at Charles Darwin University, with great thanks to Dr. Aurora Scheelings (Digital Media Lecturer, HE Course Coordinator and VET Coordinator) from CDU for her generous support.

After the screening of the film, around 30 very interested attendees listened as Russell spoke openly with his customary generosity about the film and his working methodology with Peter Weir, as well as taking numerous questions from those in attendance. It’s always good to hear someone like Russell speak and to watch the faces of those listening intently as he answers their numerous and diverse questions.

Russell Boyd is not only a fine cinematographer, he is a fine man and I cannot thank him enough for the support he gives the Society at all levels.

A reminder that commencing in 2015, Accreditation submissions will only be accepted from July 1 to July 31. So should you be considering applying for Accreditation next year, highlight those dates in your diary, time capsule, iphone, e-book etc.

I would like to add that I am well aware as to how disappointing it is NOT to receive your Accreditation but I do feel it important to remember that the Accreditation Panel take their job very seriously and consider each and every submission based on what is presented to them on the day. The opportunity does exist to have your Accreditation submission scrutinised at Branch level beforehand, but in the end it will always be the final decision of the Panel as to who does become an Accredited member of the Society. I ask you to respect that decision, to not be deterred and to definitely try again.

I was delighted to hear that Tasmanian member David Brill ACS was recently recognised at the 2014 United Nations Media Awards held in Melbourne. Both David and Geoff Parish were successful in the category Promotion of Positive Images of the Older Person: Dateline SBS TV – Free The Bears.

Another testament to David’s catalogue of work and his commitment to the career he has had a love affair with over many, many years. Read more at this: LINK

Until next time,
Ron Johanson ACS
National President

Related Articles