A conversation with Alf Rendell

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  • To view a souvenir booklet he created in the 1950s - click here.

Alf Rendell 2013Alf was born in November 1917, he came to Tauranga as an infant from Whakatane. He recalls the old glass plate (wet plate) technology used by his father who travelled around the country taking photographs. Alf began helping his father after leaving school as the Great Depression meant there were no other jobs available. We discuss the changes in photographic technology over the years, fishing in the bay and aerial photography in the 1950s.

The interview itself was just 27 minutes long and the topics covered are descibed below.



Topics discussed:

  • 01'49 – Leaving school, the depression years, printing postcards off glass plates
  • 02'45" – Technology after glass plate photography
  • 04'28" – Taking pictures in New Caledoniain while in the Army during the Second World War. Public relations dept. Dark room work
  • 06'00" – Back to NZ, Tauranga in Devonport road. Focussing on people, family, child, wedding and school photography
  • 08'00" – Equipment changes in the 1950s. Roliflex and Renhoff cameras
  • 11'00" – Changes in Tauranga
  • 14'00" – Selling the business and getting out on the water in a little boat. He describes the harbour before the wharf and the fishing before the war
  • 18'00" –aerial photos taken from a Tiger Moth around Tauranga. Sitting in the front as passenger he would have to take shots leaning backward over his shoulders
  • 20'55" – favourite camera, changes in film technology from black and white to colour negative film and recent over reliance on digital technology rather than learning how to use a camera
  • 23'50" – current activity, use of photos in BOP Times.
  • 24'25" – the airport and landing on the estuary
  • 25'12" – describes the Southern Cross, Kingsford Smith (first plane to fly the Tasman). Also theWACOflying around Ngarahoe as it erupted in 1949
  • 26'44" –  end . Shows glass negatives taken by father and self


This page archived at Perma CC in September of 2016: https://perma.cc/AX2P-KEAG

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A conversation with Alf Rendell

First Names:Alf
Last Name:Rendell
Date of Birth:1917
Year:1917, c.1920, c.1930, c.1940, and c.1950