SA eNews April 2019 - From the Pres - Book Now National Awards - West of Sunshine Screening & Q&A - Profile Greg Ashman


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From the Pres

We have a couple of great Screenings & Q&A's coming up. On April 8 we have West of Sunshine with Thom Neall, see the article below. Then on May 1 we have Ladies in Black with Peter James ACS ASC.

Our friends over at the Victorian Branch have organised a great National Awards program weekend so go to the links below and book your tickets now.

The BLACK TIE GALA is the premier event on the ACS calendar and is an opportunity to celebrate the art of the best cinematography in Australia.

In the National eNews there are suggested close-by hotels and a lot more info so check them out.

Entries for the National Awards are automatically determined from the Gold winners at the individual State & Territory Awards, held in November the preceding year. Direct entry is not available into the National Awards. Only current financial members of the Society are eligible to enter into the State & Territory awards and must remain financial members at the time of National Awards' judging.

The Gold Tripod is the highest award given in each category. A runner up may receive an Award of Distinction. Only one Gold Tripod and one Award of Distinction may be awarded in each category.

All of the Gold Tripod Winners are then reconsidered to determine the winner of the Milli Award for ACS Australian Cinematographer of the Year.

The BLACK TIE GALA is the premier event on the ACS calendar and is an opportunity to celebrate the art of the best cinematography in Australia.


The Gold Award winners from the 2018 State & Territory Awards for Cinematography will compete for Gold Tripods and Awards of Distinction in most categories except for the CineKids and Student categories where Gold Plaques are awarded.

The highly respected Milli Award for the Australian Cinematographer of the Year will be selected from the National Gold Tripod winners.

Standard Tickets are $150.00

ACS National Sponsors qualify for a number of complimentary tickets according to their level of sponsorship, theses tickets need to be booked.

Major 4
Platinum 4
Gold 2
Silver 2
Bronze 1

Purchase tickets via the Awards page link on the ACS Website: HERE!

ACS Awards Early Booking Prize

Book tickets to the Awards before March 30 and go into the draw for 2 return flights to Melbourne to attend the Awards.

This prize generously provided by our ACS preferred travel company STAGE & SCREEN TRAVEL.

**Not available for international flights or Victorian members.**

West of Sunshine Screening & Q&A with Thom Neal on April 8

Here's a night certainly worth coming to.

Not everyone gets a bucket of money to shoot a feature and Thom certainly didn't to shoot West of Sunshine but I hear he's done a a magnificent job.

So come and see the film and learn his approach to making it great! So good that it received an AACTA nomination for Best Cinematography!

Book now as it's on real soon.

Synopsis: A father has less than a day to pay back a debt to a violent loan shark. His day is turned upside down when he is forced by his ex-wife to look after their young son. As he grows increasingly desperate in his ways to pay back the debt, he is taken on a journey to confront his addiction and let go of his past.

Where: RSP theatre. Rear entrance. Check out the map on the trybooking site.

When: Monday night April 8

Time: 6pm for 6:30 start

Book: via trybooking link below. Bookings close Sat April 6. Limited spaces avail.

Cost includes a free welcome drink:
ACS members Free
Students $5
Others $10

Thanks: To RSP, Thom Neal, Maxx Corkindale & Kirsty Stark

Click to book your ticket to West of Sunshine screening & Q&A »

Profile Greg Ashman

Greg, what got your interest and start in film? What was your first project?

I suppose I first became interested in film and photography at a very young age (4 or 5) when I used to watch my Dad in his garden shed darkroom process film and make prints. Watching the images appear in the developing trays was like magic, so I guess I was hooked from then on.

After completing a photographic certificate course at Elizabeth TAFE and a Basic Television Production Course at Kilkenny Multi-Media School, I still found it hard to break into the industry. I eventually found a job (un-paid work experience) at the University of Adelaide’s Advisory Centre for University Education, they had well set up photographic darkrooms and a newly formed video production department at the time headed up by Paul Findlay and David Tulloch. It was here that I got my first taste of television production, filming graduation ceremonies and making training films for the various departments.

What came next for you after deciding to further your career?

The first opportunity to further my career came when one of the people I was working with at the Uni who had a part time job at SAS10, told me he was leaving and I should apply for his position. I contacted Colin Dunstan and managed to get the job, which was as a studio audio boom operator on “Fat Cat and Friends”. SAS10 had taken on 2 casuals and eventually when the other guy left I got his shift as well... Kids show “10 out of 10.” I enjoyed my time there as a general dogs body (almost 2 years I think) getting to work on Ten’s outside broadcasts, Adelaide 36’ers basketball at Apollo Stadium, Birdman Rallies, Iron Man challenges - even a military tattoo at Adelaide Oval and also with Vizad Productions assisting Ian Linton with lighting and grip work.

Greg mans the Sound Boom

Was it hard getting work being so young?

As I said earlier I did find it hard getting into the industry. Before I went to SAS10 I didn’t know anyone who worked in film and TV and I had applied to all the TV stations and been knocked back. After those 2 years at 10 I applied along with 500 others who sat an exam at the ABC to get into their traineeship program - only 5 made it through and I was not one of them. However, not long after this the ABC advertised various positions, one being for a studio/OB camera operator. I applied, got the job, that was 1986 and I’ve been there ever since. The first 5 years in studio/OB’s then transferring into the Field Camera Dept.

Greg frames up an Arriflex 16mm BL camera

What has been your most interesting project so far?

Over the past 33 years there have been so many and I suppose that is one of the best thing about being a cameraman, we see it first and we get to play creatively and get paid to do so too! How good is that!! That and the people I work with and have worked with and the variety is probably why I keep turning up.

One project/job that always comes to mind was a job for the ABC Science Unit Catalyst where we were to film Cranio Facial surgeon Dr David David and his team perform a surgery on a patient who had been flown in from Oman with severe facial disfigurement. He was deaf and couldn’t speak English which must have been pretty scary for him. That proved to be the case when he tried unsuccessfully to escape the anesthetist needle on the operating table, it took 4 people to hold him down as a large syringe needle was inserted into his neck. After that dramatic start what followed, having overcome my nausea at the first large incision to the scalp, was quite fascinating to watch (thankfully the B&W viewfinder helped) who knew your face could be peeled off and placed on your chest!

One of the perks, filming in exotic locations.

Thank goodness you didn't supply a photo of the op! Tell us about the challenges you faced during the operation?

Not passing out...I think it was the face mask...not enough fresh air!!

Being enthusiastic where do you think your future lies?

I’m always up for a new challenge if it involves being behind a camera...

What’s your next film project?

This week it’s off to film some segments for Gardening Australia!

Greg framing up on a canon C100.

Do you have any favourite films or TV shows?

One of my recent favourite films is ‘The Secret Life of Walter Mitty’, I’m bingeing on Netflix getting into some of their crime shows.

Tell us something about yourself that not many people know?

Having not fallen into TV the way I did...mmm...maybe I would have been an architect...I like building stuff. I once made a camera dolly for the ABC, some construction and drawing plans for construction of parts still get used on rare occasions.

What are some of your favourite things?

Our one and only dog Fluffy the spoodle, enjoying the many places to eat around Prospect and North Adelaide, Italy is always nice to visit and my son Ben....watching him grow!

Upcoming dates

April 1 Committee Meeting

April 8 West of Sunshine Screening & Q&A with Thom Neal @ RSP

May 1 Ladies in Black Screening & Q&A with Peter James ACS ASC @ SAFC

May 6 Committee Meeting

May 18 ACS National Awards for Cinematography in Melbourne

May 30 Send Membership Invoices & 2019 Sponsorship Proposals

June 1 Think about getting your Accreditation Submission together

June 3 Committee Meeting

June 30 Membership fees due

July 1 Committee Meeting

August 1 - 21 39th SA & WA Annual Awards for Cinematography entry window

August 12 SA AGM

August 30 - Sept 1 SA & WA Awards Judging

Sept 1 - 30 Accreditation Applications Window

September 2 Committee Meeting

September 6 Sponsors Deadline for Awards Assets

October 7 Committee Meeting

October 26 39th SA & WA Annual Awards for Cinematography

November 4 Committee Meeting

December 2 Committee Meeting

December 13 SA Branch Xmas Drinks

Why not visit your National HQ

If you are in Sydney drop into our ACS HQ, Level 2, 26 Ridge Street, North Sydney. The NSW committee will do their best to open up for you, contact David Lewis ACS or 0408 273 702

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The SA Branch acknowledges the financial assistance of our Major Sponsor the South Australian Film Corporation.

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Australian Cinematographers Society · Level 2, 26 Ridge Street · North Sydney, NSW 2060 · Australia