Archive for February, 2012

The Beer Project Exhibition

Wednesday, February 29th, 2012

The first ever Beer Project Exhibition opens at 5pm on Monday, March 5th, at cult beer bar Hashigo Zake. Come along, enjoy a beer, and check out photos of some of New Zealand’s brewing legends. I’d love to see you there. If you can’t make it on opening night then the photos will remain up through until closing time on Tuesday, March 13th.

The exhibition is a fundraiser to help cover some of my costs in getting to a photography workshop with Magnum photographer Trent Parke, in Fremantle later in March. See my earlier post for more details. All prints will be for sale.

Many thanks to Dom from Hashigo Zake for coming up with the idea and offering to host the exhibition. Thanks to 8 Wired and Yeastie Boys for supplying beer for the exhibition opening.

Brewers At Work, photos by Jed Soane. March 5th to 13th. Hashigo Zake.

Ø for Awesome

Monday, February 20th, 2012

A Dane, a Norwegian, and an American walk into a brewery. The result is no joke but there is a punchline involved.

Last November Hashigo Zake got three brewers together at Renaissance in Blenheim to produce a collaboration beer. Søren Erikson, the Dane behind 8 Wired Brewing, Andy Deuchars, the American brewer at Renaissance, and Kjetil Jikiun, the brewer at Norways’s Nøgne Ø, together brewed a strong, dark, hoppy ale they have called Ø for Awesome.

As Søren explains in the video below (made by Hashigo Zake’s Dylan Jauslin, bartender and videographer extraordinaire), “O for Awesome” is a phrase immortalised by the kiwi boxer, David Tua, on Celebrity Wheel of Forture in the 90s. There begins the punchline. Adding extra pun to the punchline, ‘Ø’ happens to be the Norwegian word for beer1. Awesomeness all around.

The beer has spent some time maturing nicely and will be launched at Hashigo Zake at 5pm on Tuesday night, February 21. Tuesday is also the eve of the anniversary of the February earthquake in Christchurch last year so the proceeds from the first two kegs will be donated to the Red Cross. A few bottle of the Garage Project/Nøgne Ø collaboration, Summer Sommer, will be auctioned off on the night too.

I was at Renaissance on brew day to document the process. Breweries are generally very busy places. The is a lot of downtime while brewing and usually this time is put to good use by the brewers. Fermenters are cleaned, beer is filtered, coffee is made. During collaborations though, it seems that this time is used to exchange information and chat about beer and brewing. This means I ended up with a lot of photos of brewers talking. Below are some of my favourites. Far too many more images are in the gallery.

L-R: Søren Erikson, Kjetil Jikiun, and Andy Deuchars. November 23, 2011, Wellington.

Søren tests a sample from a barrel of his Flanders Red sour ale.

Søren relaxing on his barrel farm.

Following up on my last post, if you would like to purchase prints then approximate prices are below. All prices include GST. I will have some prints at Hashigo Zake with me on Tuesday if you’d like to check them out in person.

Size Unframed Framed
6×4 $5.00
A4/8×10 $57.50 $161.00
A3 $78.20 $218.50

  1. After spending time in Denmark, where the word for beer is øl, I formed the hypothesis that the level of cultural sophistication of any nation is inversely proportional to the length of the nation’s word for ‘beer’. Hence I would be rather excited to visit Norway. 

The Beer Project Heads to Australia

Friday, February 17th, 2012

I may have to change the tagline on this website: next month I am heading to Fremantle. I will be there to participate in a five-day photography workshop with the only Australian represented by the Magnum photo agency, Trent Parke. Check out his work and his Magnum portfolio. Some amazing use of light. He manages to make everyday street scenes look like scenes from another world. His book title, “Dream Life”, is very apt.

This workshop is the photography equivalent of spending five days working on your brewing with Richard Emerson, or five days working on your drinking with Ernest Hemingway. So I’m very, very excited. Five days of photographing, critiquing, editing, while being mentored by someone at the top of their game. It will be hard work but I will learn a lot which should result in even better photos here at The Beer Project.

Each participant in the workshop is expected to complete a project during the week. The best images from each participant will be projected at an event on the Saturday night as part of the PhotoFreo Festival. Of course my project proposal involved beer. I plan to photograph craft brewers in Freemantle and Perth, similar to my work on NZ craft brewers. A secondary project documenting the general beer-drinking culture there is also an option. I’d be interested to make a comparison to NZ.

Part of the application process for a place in the workshop was sending a portfolio of five images. At first I thought “how am I going to narrow it down to five photos?”. Then I thought “argh, I don’t have five good photos”. After a bit of help on Twitter I selected these five, all from The Beer Project.

Martin Townshend
Welding at Cassels & Sons Brewery
Ian Ramsay

There are a few ways you can help me on my journey.

  1. Information. Send me tips about Freemantle and Perth, especially info about bars and breweries. Email me or message me (@jedsoane) on Twitter.
  2. Money. This is not a cheap trip so give me a hand: hire me to do a photography job, buy a print, buy a framed print of your favourite brewer (most of my favourites are on the homepage), or just send me $5. Some more specific items for sale will pop up over the next week or two but email me with any special requests you might have in the meantime.
  3. General encouragement. I am pretty laid-back and need a bit of a kick to get me into action.

Thanks for all the support so far. Now grab a beer and toast to better photos on The Beer Project.