Wanted – busman’s holiday snaps

Sarah Mankelow —  20/08/2009

My family suffers from ‘Busman’s holiday-itis’. I take all the blame. Working in community relations for DOC I am always looking for great photos of people doing cool stuff on conservation land.

So, I end up dragging my family out and about the region, taking photos of them. Our holidays generally end up being in parks and reserves around Canterbury – from a wild and windy Lake Ohau in the south, to a wintery Lewis Pass in the north. My camera at the ready, holiday snaps of my very photogenic son are now scattered throughout the DOC website and on several brochures. He is the cover star on the appropriately named “Walks for Families” booklet. It got so bad that I had to hire someone else’s children for a photo shoot just to add some new faces into the mix!

But it got me thinking – capturing a great photo could be a great way to inspire other families to get out and enjoy some of our local conservation lands.  

Postcards from a park photo competition

Postcards from a park photo competition

And so this conservation week, we are running a photo competition called ‘Postcards from a Park’.

It includes a junior section as kids often have a great creative eye for action, and digital cameras makes are so easy to use these days. Entries must include a caption that explains where and what is happening in the photo, as if you were writing a postcard home. Entries close 31 August so there’s not much time. There are some great prizes on offer.

So your mission is – get out there – discover some new places – take a snap shot and send it in!

For more information, go to www.doc.govt.nz/canterburypostcards

NB: A busman’s holiday is a vacation during which one engages in activity that is similar to one’s usual work.

Sarah Mankelow


A North Island defector, I came south to go to Lincoln Uni and never looked back. My first ‘serious’ job with DOC was in Arthur’s Pass. I've been based in Christchurch since the turn of the century!