Our History at WPS

A short look at our club.

The Wellington Photographic Society was formed in 1892 and is one of the oldest societies in Wellington. By the 1950’s the Society had over 200 members, many of whom achieved both national and international recognition in their chosen fields. Members included renowned photographers such as

  • Brian Brake, who was later invited to join the prestigious Magnum Photo Agency. His portfolio ‘Monsoon’ is universally known and admired.
  • Dr John Salmon, perhaps New Zealand’s greatest natural history photographer of his time. He was a long and valued member of the Society.
  • James Chapman-Taylor, established a noted career in architectural photography
  • Geoff Perry, who carved out a career of considerable note in stage photography
  • Ron Woolf, a leader in the wedding and portrait field
  • Ans Westra, arguably New Zealand’s top documentary photographer
  • Ron Redfern, highly respected in the field of Advertising and Industrial Photography

However, not all of the Society’s best photographers were professionals. Some such as Eric Carter and John Boyd enjoyed distinguished honours from and gained positions within the top echelons of the Photographic Society of New Zealand. Today, the Wellington Photographic Society continues to draw benefit from the achievements and reputations of these previous luminaries, and to build on this lineage through the work and contribution of our many well recognised and award winning present members. The Society’s philosophy is to emphasize learning, doing and fostering creativity in photography, by providing motivation, stimulation and practical experience.