“Clothes maketh the man.” Hamlet. “Woe is me for I am undone” Isaiah.
I have always worn jackets and coats, hats, scarves and gloves – both to address the weather and as personal expression. Eventually glasses became a necessity, offering further opportunity to make a statement. As the scruffy student beard evolved into a bristling chestnut moustache, growing self-awareness suggested that all this external paraphernalia had dichotomous value: it served to both conceal and attract.
My yearning for connection and acceptance contrasts with an educated and over-analysed understanding of my many flaws. Better to be merely glanced at and acknowledged than revealed to the judgement of the world.
“For the thing I feared has come upon me.” Job. The challenge of exposing my torso for the withered arm, excess adipose tissue and sundry blemishes to be captured, digitised and broadcast was a challenge too great to resist for my masochistic soul.
And so, on a day when a polar blast has hit the country, I disrobe in a small studio near Long Bay – with a boisterous black dog wagging its tail and thrusting between my legs. A Churchillian black dog has been a persistent companion since adolescence. Hidden from the camera, the dog’s presence evokes a sense of protective familiarity and muscular demand for attention.
Julian Cowey

Beautiful Amber

Studio Photography North Shore

Stunning Elisabeth

Studio Photography Auckland


Nude Photographer Auckland Nude Photographer Auckland Nude Photographer Auckland Nude Photographer Auckland Nude Photographer Auckland Nude Photographer Auckland Nude Photographer Auckland Nude Photographer Auckland Nude Photographer Auckland

Filipo Fifita

Portrait Photographer Auckland

My name is Filipo Fifita. I was born in Vā vā’u and raised in the main island of Tongā, specifically in the small village of Ma’ufangā. Growing up, my grandparents and aunties played a significant role in shaping my beliefs and perspective on life. They instilled in me the values of discipline and family obligation, which are deeply rooted in our traditional culture. These values are considered essential for navigating life’s trials and tribulations, as they emphasize fulfilling family duties and staying true to our faith.

However, everything changed when I migrated to Aotearoa, New Zealand, specifically to the Bay of Islands in Kerikeri, at the age of 10. In this new environment, predominantly inhabited by pākeha, I experienced a profound displacement that led to a loss of identity and hindered my sense of belonging. I longed to be back with my family in Tongā, and only later in life did I truly understand the impact of this disconnection from my roots.

To cope with this feeling of displacement and dampen its effects, I turned to substance abuse, primarily alcohol at first, but eventually spiraling into more harmful substances over the years. This personal and destructive pathway caused tears, pain, and had detrimental effects on my psychological and mental well-being, as well as on those around me. Looking back, I deeply regret the lack of empathy, compassion, and disregard for the well-being of others that I displayed during that time. If only I had possessed the mindset I have now, things would have been different, and perhaps we could share a laugh at my past foolishness.

It is important to acknowledge that I bear sole responsibility for not seeking the support and guidance I needed during those challenging times. In hindsight, I realize the significance of addressing problems and seeking help sooner rather than later before the people and things we cherish become casualties of our distorted reality.

Now, as an aspiring occupational therapist student, I am determined to advocate for better mental and physical health. My goal is to create a space where individuals can navigate their daily struggles and overcome the stigma surrounding men’s mental, psychological, and physical well-being. By sharing our collective voices and stories of overcoming struggles, we can work together to combat these issues and encourage others to seek proper help.

I believe that one day, we will triumph over the shame and stigma associated with seeking help. Together, we can create a society that prioritizes mental and physical well-being for everyone.


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Professional Experience

Professional Work Experience

  • Wow Photography. logo

    Wow Photography · , Auckland, New Zealand

    I am only as good as my last image so always aspiring to exceed my reputation of producing unique, quality photographs while providing outstanding value. I am achieving this by focusing on my customers’ real needs and delivering my best work. In pursuit of my goal to become a leading portrait photographer I choose to treat business partners, customers and stakeholders with respect while listening to the marketplace.

  • WEX logo

    Feb 2010 – Dec 2010 

  • Orcon logo

    Orcon ·

  • The Warehouse logo

    Jan 2006 – Nov 2008

    Responsible for gathering Requirements and analysis of data. Conducting workshops and facilitating brainstorming sessions. Writing Business Cases and developing Business Requirements to support users’ needs and to improve business performance. Building powerful presentations and acquiring stakeholders sign-off. Supporting the development team, writing test plans and test cases. Managing users’ expectations, project scope and timeline. Delivering the most cost effective solutions. Implementing disciplines and structure to ensure stable environment and best practice throughout development.

    Initiating, promoting and coordinating the selection, customisation and implementation of a budgeting, forecasting and reporting system that extract data from Oracle db. I have effectively identified the client needs and offered a cost effective solution. I established contact with potential suppliers, facilitated contract negotiations and took an active part in comparing and selecting the best alternative.
    Producing the Business Case and Business Requirements documents, designing the project plan and defining the project scope.

    Taking an active role in managing users’ expectation, facilitating conference meetings, ensuring systems are in place, data is provided and delivery meets user expectations. My responsibilities included managing day-to-day activities, providing internal liaison with the supplier, Finance and Infrastructure. In addition to supporting Finance in defining their requirements, I facilitated consultative design workshops and coordinated resources and activities ensuring successful delivery.

    Sitel Group logo

    ESI Expert Systems Industries Ltd logo

    Project Manager in establishing decision support systems for the following areas:
    Production management, Inventory provisioning, Procurement management, Alternative components allocation, Telephone calls trend analysis, Electronic traffic signs control and Financial credit scoring.

Chantelle Album


Faces of Jerusalem Artist Statement

Beggars and scholars, slaves and warriors have all walked the narrow streets of the Old City of Jerusalem. In early 2015, Auckland Photographer of the Year Ilan Wittenberg set out to capture the stoic nature of its inhabitants. The result is a compelling collection of portraits – ‘Faces of Jerusalem’ – which will go on display at Te Uru Waitakere Contemporary Gallery.
Born in Israel, Ilan has visited the UNESCO World Heritage site on numerous occasions. However, it was during a recent family trip that the idea to produce a portfolio of portraits (for his fellowship application to the Photographic Society of New Zealand) first took form. Not wanting to hold up the family, Ilan returned by himself in January 2015 and spent days exploring the winding, cobbled streets and tiny, dimly lit shops of the Muslim, Jewish, Armenian and Christian quarters.
While his collection of striking monochrome images captures a range of people going about their daily lives, it was the city’s merchants that Wittenberg was particularly drawn to. “Many people are not happy, you can see that,” says Ilan, “but that’s for good reasons: the economy is down. There are very few customers and very little foot traffic because there is a lot of stress in the streets. Wars, religious tension and the ongoing political conflict scare the tourists away.”
Wanting to create quick rapport and a relaxed environment, Ilan introduced himself as a New Zealander (which he has been since arriving in the country in 2001). “Oh Kiwi, welcome” would be the typical response, which cleared the opportunity to create a photograph. Where language permitted, he engaged his subjects in further conversation, to produce more engaging portraits than candid documentary photography usually does. “These photos were taken without a flash or a tripod, using ambient light only. I chose to present the prints in monochrome to eliminate distracting colours and help focus the viewer’s attention on the people, their body language and their expression. The sepia tone also provides a timeless atmosphere to the images, which reflect the rich culture and turbulent history of Jerusalem.
His journey as a photographer started relatively recently in 2011, but Ilan has already been given the honour of Fellow of the Photographic Society of New Zealand as well as a Master of the New Zealand Institute of Professional Photography. Selected prints from ‘Faces of Jerusalem’ portfolio contributed to the body of work that won Wittenberg the prestigious title of NZIPP 2015 Auckland Photographer of the Year. The collection also took first place in the Documentary Book section of the 2015 Moscow International Foto Awards, a competition that attracted entries from 84 countries.
‘Faces of Jerusalem’ was exhibited at Te Uru Gallery from February 20 to May 1.
In August 2016, Ilan won the title Travel Photographer of the Year by the Cathay Pacific Travel Media Awards which are organised by Travcom (New Zealand Travel Communicators) to celebrate excellence in travel writing and photography.
The photography awards were judged by a panel of three; Rob Lile, director of One Shot image library, Jenny Nicholls, Art Director for North & South magazine and Tessa Chrisp, past winner of the Cathay Pacific Travel Photographer of the Year Award. The Travel Photographer of the Year is judged on the entire portfolio of published work.
Rob Lile said: “This year a clear and unanimous favourite appeared amongst the many images put forward for the scrutiny of a tough judging panel. While there were many images that caught our eye and invited second and third viewings, one series stood out, indicating the work of a master visual storyteller. Ilan’s images transported us to centuries-old locations to examine modern lives intertwined with layers of time. They displayed patience and sensitivity as a storyteller becomes immersed in the worlds of people going about their ordinary daily lives, as unobtrusively as possible. His presence is accepted; images are not overtly posed nor awkward and each subject is entirely comfortable with the interaction. The creative journey continued through careful post production, printing and mounting, all reflecting the skills of a professional determined to present his vision as perfectly as possible. This was a powerful series that will live in our minds for a long time.”

Additional Links

In April 2016, Faces of Jerusalem was featured is issue 53 of the prestigious f11 Magazine with 38 pages covering the portfolio.
Check out D-Photo magazine article from September 2016: Within the walls of the Old City
Listen to Standing Room Only with Lynn Freeman (10’51”): RNZ Interview
Photos from the exhibition Opening Event

Faces of Jerusalem Artist Statement

Rock Mandala

Rock Mandala

Interview with Namastir Podcast

Staging Art


Fine Art Photography

Silo Six: Entrance / Foyer wall 1

Entrance / Foyer wall 1

Fine Art Photography

Blue Sphere -Entrance, wall 2

Entrance, wall 2


Fine Art Photography

Willow Tree and Mood: Lounge

Lounge 1/2


Fine Art Photography
War of the Worlds: Lounge 2/2

Lounge 2/2


Fine Art Photography
The Jetty: Stairwell – Top level

Stairwell – Top level


Fine Art Photography ?
Blue Light: ?


Fine Art Photography
Brooklyn Bridge: bedroom 1

bedroom 1


Fine Art Photography
Yellow Twigs: ?



Fine Art Photography
Abstract Kaleidoscope: Lounge, above fireplace

Lounge, above fireplace


Fine Art Photography
Boat Graveyard: Top of staircase landing

Top of staircase landing


Fine Art Photography

Dining room – horizontal layout

Dining room – horizontal layout

Helen 1



Escape in the underpass

Prestige V


Portrait Photographer Auckland