Polynesia magazine

When I were a lad , we used a thing called FILM! Smalll canisters with rolls of silver dye covered plastic inside  that we would put inside a camera to give us up to 36 Shots! We would take it to the laboratory and they would process them to things called transparencies? You don’t see quality like that today with your fancy new digital gadgets  on your iPhone app.

Ok , it wasn’t quite that long ago, but its been a while.










From 1996 -2000 I worked alongside designer Athena Sommerfeld and Journalists Shona Jennings and Stephen Knight to produce a quarterly inflight magazine for the then National airline of Samoa, Polynesian airlines ( since amalgamated into Virgin blue).


Market stall proprietors at Maketi Fou, Apia

The brief was to sell Samoa as a destination, not just the white sand beaches and sunshine ( and there was plenty of that ) but also to show the way Samoan people lived and worked at an everyday level as well, and to create a vehicle which conveyed the experience of Samoa. Rather than the resort style of island holiday , we were also promoting a more cultural “ecotour” type of experience.

While we always planned ahead with regard to articles and features we would be working on. We needed to have a lot of flexibility as situations often changed and many fresh opportunities presented themselves during our stays there . Magazine layouts were planned out in advance and we talked about what sort of aspects of Samoa we wanted to illustrate and in what kind of style they might be best represented in .

I used 35mm and medium format film cameras. I really enjoyed using the Pentax 6x7cm camera  . It was big and slow to use but the colour and saturation it produced often reproduced so much better in print than 35mm and gave great separation of subject matter from the background.  Fuji film was used , usually Velvia 50 or 100 .

Sunday Church , samoa

Garden produce , Samoa

Umu preparation on Savaii, Samoa

Umu preparation on Savaii, Samoa


Sunday in Church , Savaii, Samoa








polylayout one

The sea around Samoa


Maketi Fou, Apia

Maketi Fou, Apia


Longboat racing in Samoa



Fish and produce market , Apia


Dancer in traditional costume , American Samoa


Islands around Samoa




Tonga was another Polynesian destination .


The beautiful and friendly Manono island.

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