Archives For Posters

Today, Sydney-based photographer Tim Donnelly tells us the story behind the epic image he gifted us for our Wildside New Zealand promotion

Tim Donnelly.

Tim Donnelly

I listen to the rushing sounds of water while staring at the majestic Mount Sibbald, contemplating what brought me to this incredible landscape.

The answer: It was the result of a plan by a great friend to surprise me for my birthday.

With complete secrecy, he had organised to take me to Lake Tekapo for a photography escape. All I knew was I had to surrender my passport and be prepared for no sleep and plenty of adventure.

You can imagine my surprise when I not only arrive at Christchurch International Airport, but also see two mates standing at the baggage claim. What a start!

I hadn’t visited the South Island of New Zealand before, so my expectations were high—and this great land did not disappoint.

On the shore of Lake Tekapo. Photo: Tim Donnelly | CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.

On the shore of Lake Tekapo, near the famous Church of the Good Shepherd. Captured this shot the first evening we got there

Over the next few days we covered as much terrain as possible between Lake Tekapo and Mount Cook.

On the second to last day, we jumped into the 4WD and proceeded along the east side of Lake Tekapo.

On the way to Lake Tekapo. Photo: Tim Donnelly | CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.

A stunning scene of stunning light and landscape

Mumford & Sons played as the soundtrack as we witnessed breathtaking scene after breathtaking scene.

We eventually crossed the Macauley River and continued north, but unfortunately the weather closed in, not allowing us to go any further.

Sunset at the north end of Lake Tekapo. Photo: Tim Donnelly | CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.

Sunset at the north end of Lake Tekapo

We turned around and crossed back through the river, where we decided to stop and have a break. The pause in our exploration resulted in a composition frenzy. The sun broke through the clouds and it lit Mount Sibbald beautifully—highlighting every contour and crevice.

With great excitement, I extended my tripod against the banks of the gorge. I placed the rushing water in the foreground of my frame, the mountains in the background, configured my filters, and waited for the sun to do its best. The composition was complete so I released the shutter…

Looking back up the North East Gorge Stream towards Mount Sibbald. Photo: Tim Donnelly | CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.

Epic: Looking back up the North East Gorge Stream towards Mount Sibbald

I am honoured that the Department of Conservation Te Papa Atawhai would choose my photo to represent their efforts and I hope you will see more of my imagery in the future. Thank you again for your stunning country and all its beauty. Get out there and experience it—unleash the Wildside!

Check out more of Tim’s work on flickr, 500px, Google+

Join the Wildside on Facebook and Twitter

If you cast your mind back to August last year, you might remember my blog post asking you to ‘Join me on the Wildside‘ a new social media community run by DOC on Facebook and Twitter.

Today, I’m proud to be one of over 9,000 people who ‘like’ Wildside and aspire to the ‘Aotearoa New Zealand. Live it. Love it. Look after it. Together.’ vision.

Of course, we’d love to have more people join us, which is why we’ve created these beautiful postcards and posters to raise its profile in the ‘real’ i.e. offline world.

Wildside poster.

As a member of DOC’s web team I see a lot of beautiful images every day, but when I saw that photo on flickrshowing North East Gorge Stream, looking towards Mount SibbaldI knew it was the one for our Wildside project. Alana McCrossin, the amazing DOC designer who drew the short straw to work with me on the project, agreed.

I contacted the Sydney based photographer, Tim Donnelly, to ask if he’d let us use his image for the cause, and he kindly agreed—sacrificing his own precious time and money to help.

So, as much as this post is a shout out to Wildside—it’s also a shout out to the generous, talented, Tim Donnelly—and everyone else who willingly shares their time, gifts and talents to help grow conservation

On Thursday, Tim’s going to share his story behind that photo with us.


See the Wildside posters (on display) and postcards (free to take) at DOC visitor centres around the country.

By Siobhan File

As part of the DOC’s 25th anniversary celebrations, I asked around to see what posters DOC staff had tucked away from yester-years. Check them out and vote for your favourite…

Knowledge on these posters is limited, so if you have any information about these, or any gems of your own hidden away, I’d love to hear from you!


Care for your country – 1973

This is by the famous Wellington cartoonist Nevile Lodge who must have been specially commissioned to do this poster.

Care for your country

Conservation is all year – 1976

This is a favourite for many. It was designed by Howard Campbell and was the winning entry in a competition sponsored by Todd Group and WWF.


Save us a place to live – 1979

This lovely poster was created by Don Binney, produced for the National Conservation Week Campaign Committee, with assistance from the L.D Nathan Group of Companies.


Nature’s place in town – 1981

And we move into the eighties… A Conservation New Zealand poster; simple, and to the point.


Reflect your concern. Plant a tree – 1981

It’s Conservation Week, but this guy doesn’t look too happy about it. Nice inclusion of Arbor Day messaging though.


The alpine world

This poster was developed at Mount Cook in the mid 1980s in conjunction with the publication of an A4 book The Alpine World of Mount Cook National Park.

A similar poster was printed for Tongariro National Park, but the concept didn’t get used for a wider national message.

Len Cobb from Cobb/Horwood, who did many of the National Park A5 handbooks, did the production.


Tread gently on the ice

This poster was produced by DOC staff member Harry Keys when he worked at the Commission for the Environment (CFE) in the mid 80s. CFE had become part of the government’s delegation at meetings of the Antarctic Treaty parties which, at the time, were dominated by the question of how to assess proposals for mineral and hydrocarbon exploration and development in the Antarctic region. It was widely displayed in post offices throughout New Zealand.

Tread gently on the ice


People need plants

It’s true. A lovely landscape produced by the Post Office Savings Bank for Conservation New Zealand.


Shelter from the storm

The wild and uncompromising nature of New Zealand has given rise to a unique diversity of shelters and huts scattered throughout our back country. This collection of images was put together by the Federated Mountain Club, supported by the Hillary Commission.

Shelter from the storm


New Zealand’s Forest Parks

Something for everyone! Contact your nearest Forest Services office for a wide range of experiences and recreational activities.


Community forests and woodlands

Produced in 1985 for International Year of the Forest.


Conservation Week 2009

This poster was designed by Saatchi & Saatchi – a snapshot of the future!


Conservation Week 2009

Get involved in conservation and who knows… a clever campaign that conjures a whole heap of ‘what if’ thoughts.

Conservation Week 2009 – 2


What’s your favourite?

So, what is your favourite poster? Vote in our poll (below). Any memories around these? If you have info to add about any of these posters, comment below and we’ll add it to the descriptions. If you have copies of your own posters that you’d like to share, leave a comment and I’ll get back to you.

The history of Conservation Week posters

In the early seventies, Conservation Week came under the umbrella of the Nature Conservation Council, with other agencies and organisations represented on a Conservation Week committee. Each year, with sponsorship, it produced a promotional poster and a themed teaching poster with teachers’ notes.