Photographer Nic Staveley on shooting Fonterra Grass Roots

When the team at Origami got in touch about shooting Fonterra‘s Grass Roots Fund campaign I knew it was going to be an awesome project to shoot.  The Grass Roots Fund offers funding for community group projects so it meant three weeks traveling around the country photographing people and places. The brief was to steer clear of the major centres and focus on small town New Zealand, specifically people and community buildings. Starting out just north of Kerikeri, assistant Jordan Mauger and I made our way down to Bluff, stopping in at as many local halls and town centers as we could find. We clocked up just over 5000 kms in total. As expected it involved lots of hard work and long hours, but also lots of fun. We met some really interesting local people, who were more than happy to share their stories and let us take their photo. If you do ever want to get access to a community hall in a small town in NZ, find the local Four Square (normally across the road). They will have the keys, or worse case they will know who has the keys, guaranteed!

The shots from the trip will be shown in an exhibition that will travel to some of the towns we visited, so keep an eye out in the new year. We also shot and edited these clips on my iPhone to keep the team at Fonterra updated while we were on the road. Thanks Origami and Fonterra for choosing me to shoot such an interesting job!

Nic Staveley