“Scruff,” a Short Film In-The-Making

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision Audio Conservator Alex Porter has hidden talents. Outside of her day job as an archivist, she has an impressive career as a filmmaker. A few of the films she has directed include: Super8man (2007), a comic short film inspired by Richard Bach’s book Johnathan Livingstone Seagull and exploring the world of an amateur filmmaker; A Sense of Place (2008), a fantastical observation of fine wine and art; and N or Nor W, Study of a Canterbury Wind (2011), which looks at a Canterbury Nor’ wester from the perspective of a young girl living in the 1950s (we exhibited this film here at the archive in 2013).

In this blog post she puts on her producer’s cap, and shares a new filmmaking project she’s working on with Ed Lust.

Scruff2
Scruff Director Ed Lust, with D.O.P. Sabin Holloway, on location at a flat in Sumner, Christchurch. (Photo by Alex Porter).

 

I was stoked when Ed Lust [1] asked if I would produce his short film, Scruff, because pretty much everything Ed does is cool and generally involves cosmic wonder. We met during postgraduate years at the University of Canterbury in 2009: he was completing his MFA, and I was starting my Hons. A fact was established in my mind when I saw Ed’s final submission that this man stood apart from the crowd; not only because he was gay (in both senses of the word), but because he was in the business of making and creating great art across disciplines, prolifically and seamlessly. We have shared a couple of road trips and exhibition spaces over the last few years and generally founded a loose sort of working exchange which brings me to the now, the project at hand: Scruff, the short film.

We are coming up to two years on from where we began with a New Zealand Film Commission Fresh Short grant, and have one more weekend of drama to go before the production can be fully realised from script to screen, project this baby into post, to master and apply to festivals. Anyone who has ever had a hand in making a short (but works full-time in their other field of interest) will know [2], really know this is just how the timeline rolls sometimes — and let it be known Ed is also a full-time archivist [3]. Scruff is a personal story; it’s a coming of age tale that pushes open the edges of envelopes, wide. Follow this link to hear Ed’s story, see his Boosted campaign and witness his bold approach as he stands naked [4], putting himself on the line.

Boosted!? I hear you cry, hasn’t he had enough support already? As his producer I say no, he needs a little more, actually one weekend of production costs more. Fellow film lovers, it is time to stand up and join the faithful posse of family and friends, the existing support of Christchurch’s “we help people like Ed because we believe in them” network collective and other available squeezed-dry resources. Follow the link, hear his plea and create an opportunity to be part of the love, if all you do is “like” or “share” his message, God Bless you anyway [5].

Thanks,

Alex Porter

Friend and Producer fighting to represent filmmaking in Christchurch

 

Ed looking happy with the way things are going. (Photo by Alex Porter).
Ed looking happy with the way things are going. (Photo by Alex Porter).

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Basil Clarke (Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision collection).

Audio Curios: Turning Print into Sound

An example from the Radio Reading Service, which broadcasts 24-hours a day from Levin. Volunteers read information as it is printed from newspapers, magazines and periodicals – turning print into sound for anyone who finds it difficult to read conventionally printed material. This recording (9 June 2015) contains a programme guide and a news item about the recent Manawatu Wedding Expo.

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision Radio Collection, all rights reserved. To enquire about re-use of this item please contact sound@ngataonga.org.nz

This post is part of the Audio Curios series. Radio Collection Developer Gareth Watkins regularly comes across interesting, unique, and sometimes downright puzzling bits of audio during his accessioning work. He’s going to share some of these audio treasures with you in the Audio Curios series, which will be posted here on the Gauge blog frequently during 2015.

An Elephant on the Mouth Organ

Earlier this month we posted an Audio Curio about Anjalee the elephant, Auckland Zoo’s newest arrival. In this follow-up piece, Sarah Johnston (Client Services Coordinator – Radio) introduces us to a much earlier Auckland Zoo elephant named Jamuna.

Jamuna, an Indian elephant, was an Auckland Zoo resident from 1923 until her death in 1965. In the Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision Sound Collection is a disc of unedited recordings made at the Zoo on the 14th of January 1943, for station 1ZB children’s radio programme.

The recordings reflect zoos of earlier times, in which animals were seen much more as objects of entertainment. Although Jamuna was much-loved, the need to keep elephants in conditions that more closely match their life in the wild was not so well understood.

Children and keeper Ater Ali riding on Jamuna the elephant at the Auckland Zoo (Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, ref. 35-R176).
Children and keeper Ater Ali riding on Jamuna the elephant at the Auckland Zoo (Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, ref. 35-R176).

In this excerpt,  1ZB announcer Dudley Wrathall is heard with Jamuna, who plays a mouth organ with the end of her trunk and then stands on her back legs in her Elephant House, which today is a function centre at the zoo.

Listen here:

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision Radio Collection, all rights reserved. To enquire about re-use of this item please contact sound@ngataonga.org.nz
Basil Clarke (Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision collection).

Audio Curios: On Your Mark, Get Set….

Veteran football commentator John Helm holds the world record for naming all of the English Premier League clubs in under a minute. Listen to him doing it on Morning Report in 29-seconds! (Morning Report, 8 June 2015, RNZ National)

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision Radio Collection, all rights reserved. To enquire about re-use of this item please contact sound@ngataonga.org.nz

This post is part of the Audio Curios series. Radio Collection Developer Gareth Watkins regularly comes across interesting, unique, and sometimes downright puzzling bits of audio during his accessioning work. He’s going to share some of these audio treasures with you in the Audio Curios series, which will be posted here on the Gauge blog frequently during 2015.

Back to the 80s Photo Competition Winners

Thanks to the brave souls who shared your best 1980s fashion moments with us for the Back to the 80s Photo Competition.

Because of the general ace-ness of all of the 80s photos submitted, our judges had a hard time choosing. We’re excited to announce that we have two Overall Winners.

Renee: some great 80s outfits, complete with dappled photography studio background. Who could forget school photo day?
Renee Mia: some great 80s outfits, complete with dappled photography studio background. Who could forget school photo day?

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Basil Clarke (Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision collection).

Audio Curios: Chatting with Anjalee the Elephant

Auckland Zoo’s elephant team leader Andrew Coers talks to Justin Gregory about how he communicates with Anjalee, an eight-year-old female elephant destined for Auckland Zoo (Spectrum, 31 May 2015, Radio New Zealand National). Anjalee came from an elephant orphanage in Sri Lanka and is currently having a 90-day quarantine stopover in Niue (she’s the first ever elephant on the island).

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision Radio Collection, all rights reserved. To enquire about re-use of this item please contact sound@ngataonga.org.nz

Listen to the full feature here.

This post is part of the Audio Curios series. Radio Collection Developer Gareth Watkins regularly comes across interesting, unique, and sometimes downright puzzling bits of audio during his accessioning work. He’s going to share some of these audio treasures with you in the Audio Curios series, which will be posted here on the Gauge blog frequently during 2015.

Back to the 80s Photo Competition

While the 80s brought us many things we’d rather forget – bad perms, stonewash and shoulder pads – it’s also left us with a legacy of terrific family films. We’re screening a series of fantastically fun 1980s films in Wellington June 13 – July 18, in partnership with the Square Eyes Film Foundation and with support from Wellington City Council Creative Communities. See the programme here.

We’re also running a Back to the 80s photo competition. Send us photos of your best 1980s outfits (either vintage 80s photos or 80s outfits recreated today) to be in to win prizes, including a Season’s Pass to all screenings in the Back to the 80s series and classic pick n’ mix lolly packs.

To enter the competition, email a digital copy of your 1980s photo to news@ngataonga.org.nz, or post it on the Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision’s Facebook or Twitter pages, or post it on Instagram and tag @ngataongasv

All photos submitted will be published here on the Gauge blog.

Entries close 2pm, Friday 12 June 2015.

Please see the competition Conditions of Entry at the bottom of this page.

 

To give you some inspiration, here are some photos of Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision staff in our most fabulous 80s outfits!

Some of us are too embarassed to be identified for our crimes against fashion – I wonder if you can guess who’s who?

One of our staff was part of the NZ Contingent at the 1981 Australian Flying Disc Nationals. We love the stubbies!
One of our staff was part of the NZ Contingent at the 1981 Australian Flying Disc Nationals. We love the stubbies!
One of the Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision team was part of the Dunedin Sound.
Another of the Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision team was part of the Dunedin Sound.
Channelling Marty McFly in Back to the Future!
Channelling Marty McFly in Back to the Future!

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Basil Clarke (Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision collection).

Audio Curios: 35 Hours into a 72 Hour Broadcast!

Field Theory – a collective of artists based in Australia – undertook to broadcast continuously for 72 hours from Lancaster Park, Christchurch in November 2014.  The collective were interested in the narratives that tied people to the stadium and helped shape the enigma of place, memory and history.

This excerpt is taken from approximately 35-hours into the broadcast (Field Theory, 14-17 November 2014).

Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision Radio Collection, all rights reserved. To enquire about re-use of this item please contact sound@ngataonga.org.nz

This post is part of the Audio Curios series. Radio Collection Developer Gareth Watkins regularly comes across interesting, unique, and sometimes downright puzzling bits of audio during his accessioning work. He’s going to share some of these audio treasures with you in the Audio Curios series, which will be posted here on the Gauge blog frequently during 2015.