Return To Blog 27 July 2016

Spotlight: Simon Devitt

Spotlight: Simon Devitt 

Simon Devitt is a photographer born under a Mayan pyramid during a full moon. He is based in Auckland, New Zealand. His practice focus is Architecture.

As part of his photography practice Simon travels extensively throughout Australasia and further afield. 

His work is published in numerous national and international magazines including Elle Decor (Italia), Architectural Digest (Germany), Dwell (USA), Habitus, InDesign (Australia), Architecture NZ, Urbis, Interior (NZ).



I made the following selection of pictures to reflect a few ideas important in my practice as a photographer and to tell a story behind how each image came into existence. Photographs are literally made of time and for me the alchemy of photography really begins when the picture is made. Just add time and context.



This is the New Zealand War Memorial at Hyde Park Corner in London, England. This shoot involved me flying to London to photograph the new Memorial, unveiled just the day before by the Queen. I arrived to find rubber matts protecting the grass, bollards and fluorescent fencing EVERYWHERE! This wasn’t going to go well unless something happened quickly. I contacted the Hyde Park Ranger and had a chat with him, within an hour all of the offending artefacts were removed and I could carry on my work. Nothing is impossible, anytime, anywhere. Kudos to a very well humoured Park Ranger and his boys. 



This residential Auckland interior was styled by the Architect, a man with impeccable taste and a penchant for fine objects. The house wasn’t occupied at the time so we were able to create the scene we best gave the feeling intended for that space. It can take an entire day to style a house for a photo shoot. The scene is really animated by the inclusion of the (very well behaved) foal. 



I really like and often employ elevational views like this one shot at Wellington High School in a very Modernist building by Architect Bill Alington (1973). I think the silence and calm of a view is important. This allows the viewer an opportunity to observe unimpeded and in a (possibly) reflective manner. Dynamic diagonals are louder and create drama, they achieve something quite different.


With this shoot the Architect and I decided to shoot the house only at dawn and dusk for the period of 3/4 days. Dawn and dusk are really important times of day when a house is drawn into an altered state, the in-between moment from day to night, from sleep to rise. Different sounds fill a house, the house is used a different way. The colours recede to pastel and light is painted from black.


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