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Launch of 'Wellingon:: Colourcity Velocity'

Dive by Shooting
– Wellington image by Cat Brown

Media release:: December 17 2009.
Immediate release
Attention: Arts/lifestyle/design/Wellington editors and communicators

Launch of 'Wellingon:: Colourcity Velocity', a new series of pop-tographic iconic Wellington images by Cat Brown.
_This is Wellington like you’ve never seen it before_

Oozing saturated colours. Bold striking lines and lurid bright skies. Rich, vivid and massively design-focused. Her images, including 'nikau explosion', 'pinkawahine' and 'divebyshooting' are Wellington like you’ve never seen it before.

“I was bored with the delicate lines and muted colours which seems to have been the trend in design, art and photography over the last few years,” says Thorndon-based photographic fine artist Cat Brown.

“I wanted to create images that would appeal to anyone who wanted to wake up to more colour and spark in their lives. I also wanted to make images that were vibrant and over the top representations of the things that I liked most about Wellington,” she says.”

This Wellington: Colourcity Velocity series is total pop-tography. I want it hanging in everyone’s kitchen, in everyone’s lounge. I wanted to make images that were bright and bold and totally accessible to people of all ages and backgrounds and make people feel energised just by looking at them,” she says.

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This latest series of works by Brown cannot be found in any gallery in Wellington. Instead she has chosen a virtual gallery to show off the brilliant colours and iconic imagery of her latest work. Click here to view

Getting started as a photographer - Cat Brown: "I went from a tiny newspaper to shooting John Travolta"

This year is Brown’s first as a full time photographer. She launched her creative enterprise, Cat Brown Photography, in June.
Before this she photographed professionally while working as a communication advisor a number of Australian and New Zealand organisations and media outlets, including Qantas, Jetstar, Freehills (Australia’s largest commercial law-firm), the University of New South Wales, and the Christchurch City Council.

“In 1997, my very first job after studying communications at university was as a journalist for a small newspaper on Auckland’s Hibiscus Coast. On my first day the editor surprised me by giving me a large, expensive SLR camera and informing me I was also to be paper’s photographer.
“I had no idea what I was doing. I couldn’t even take the lens cap off
“Luckily one of the designers showed me the basics and I just took off from there. I had to. When you’re thrown in the deep end you learn pretty fast,” she says.
With talent and a flare for creating striking images she went on to became ‘official photographer’ for a number of organisations and shoot many varied subjects over the years: from John Travolta in his role as ambassador for Qantas, to the Wiggles, to the Australian Olympians returning from their triumphant Athen Olympics.
Brown describes her experience with the Olympic athletes:
“I’m a Kiwi, but I was still stoked to see that plane cruise into that huge Kingsford Smith Airport hanger and watch all the smiling, medal-clad olympians walk down the stairs and touch back down on Aussie soil and greet their families. It was a really cool moment - they were all totally beaming,” she says.
"John Travolta was also fun to shoot. I even had the chance to do the Vince Vega Jack rabbit slim dance (from Pulp Fiction) with him in between shots. It was a bit surreal," she says.

From her first day shooting photos for the Hibiscus Coast Newspaper, Brown found she loved the instantaneousness of the photographic medium.
“I started taking photographs before digital was everywhere like it is now - it was the old school film days. Still, I found with a bit of camera shutter speed or aperture tweaking here and there, you could take the kinds of images you had in your mind in a single instant. You could develop them and see them that very day.

“This was exhilarating for me. To explain, I came from a family which valued traditional artistic skills very, very highly. And to be honest photography - even professional photography - was viewed as a very amateur, low-brow pass time.
“Within a traditional, artistic sense, the type of full blown, full colour, realistic images of a scene you see or have in your mind could take weeks to create, and suddenly here I found I could create it in a split second.
“It’s obvious I know, but to me, and at that time, this was quite a revelation.

Family connections

This is only the second photographic exhibition of Cat Brown’s works. In 2000 she had her first showing of photographs as part of a family exhibition along with her late father, traditional realist artist and ex-lecturer at Auckland University’s Elam School of Fine Art Peter Brown, her Gisborne-based artist mother Catherine Brother, and designer and artist brother Romilly Brown (current winner of the Gisborne/East Coast Telecom Art Awards).
Brown, who is also an artist and illustrator has exhibited painted and illustrated works in both Australia and New Zealand.

"My father Peter Brown taught me to look very carefully at my surroundings, to notice the subtleties, the patterns and the colours that others might take for granted. I've tried to take this a step further and make the little things big, the patterns more obvious and the subtleties scream with colour. I think he'd be pretty proud of what I'm doing now ... ," says Brown smiling.

About Cat Brown

Cat Brown is a photographer, artist and musician based in Thorndon, Wellington. Her work is as dynamic and varied as she is.
“I have to have dynamism in what I do, I get bored easily,” she says.
After working in journalism, and communications over the past 12 years, Brown has never been far from a camera.

More details
• For interviews and more information call Cat Brown on 0211 548 540 or email
• Attached: Promotional photographs from Wellington::Colourcity.Velocity
• Attached: Promotional photograph of Cat Brown/if used please photo credit: Ali Balkwill
• Click Wellington::Colourcity.Velocity to see this new series of fine art poptographic prints by Cat Brown


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