Auckland Parks Artists Residency!

I am THRILLED to announce that I’ve been confirmed for the 2013 Auckland Parks Artists Residency! I applied back in January and have been trying not to think about it, as I know a lot of people apply and I am SO keen to pursue the project I have planned for it…. Anyway I got the call a few days ago and the news is now public: both myself and filmmaker & photographer Denise Batchelor are the Artists in Residence for 2013! Wahooooooooo!!!!

So what does it mean? Well, I’ll be spending 8 weeks living in a fairly remote part of the Waitakere Ranges in Auckland, working on a project. Where exactly? Well, as part of the residency I am allocated a house, Barr Cottage, in Little Huia – check this map to see the proximity to Auckland, its a rural location but is only a 40 minute drive to downtown Auckland, for when I get that craving for sushi!


The yellow line on the map is the direction of the sun rise, so basically out the front gate from the house is both the beach of Manukau Harbour and the sunrise!



When I lived in Auckland back in the 1990s I remember a number of times driving out to Little Huia, parking my car & riding my mountain bike up & over the hill to the West Coast beach of Whatipu. And I have a number of recordings in my library dating from back then too. This topo map shows a bit more detail of the area, it is basically the south end of the Waitakere Ranges.


The main project I will be working on while in residence combines my three primary skills (field recording, sound design and composition) and I will be expanding on the proof of concept I created for my Pecha Kucha talk, of recording and analysing native bird song, and using it as the DNA of music – see HERE from slide 13 onwards, with audio examples using a Bellbird recording…


Being based in the park 24/7 will provide a LOT of opportunities for recording native birds, and there are a number of initiatives underway in the park for reintroducing some of the rare and endangered native bird species which I hope to also observe, record and document.

My residency is from late October through to mid December, so I can also imagine being based in such a beautiful park at the start of summer will mean I shoot a lot of photos and timelapse too! Also maybe of interest to any local Auckland soundies I am considering the idea of organising a listening workshop and a field recording workshop while there too, but I will work that out closer to the time….

Huge thanks must go the Auckland City Council for organising such a fantastic creative opportunity! Applications open for the 2014 residency in Decemeber 2013, so save that link if you’re interested.


Relative to my project, I am especially fascinated by the idea that a significant part of some bird song is beyond the hearing range of us mere humans, so I intend to explore this with the help of my Telinga dish, Sennheiser MKH8020 and some fun with pitch shifting! For example have a listen to the amazing tonality of the Tui, first at real speed then played at quarter real speed. (Maybe this IS the droids we’re looking for! R2D2s long lost brother?) Note: it wasn’t recorded with the 80X0 mics

3 thoughts on “Auckland Parks Artists Residency!

  1. Michael Manzke

    Congratulations Tim. Really looking forward to hear more of those pitched down bird calls.

  2. Simon

    Wow you lucky @&££er ! Congratulations, sounds like a really exciting project and opportunity to record some amazing birds and wildlife. And the residency should bring some nice PR too. Really pleased for you on this.. I bet you can’t wait to get started, like a little kid at Christmas!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *