Mish O'Neill



“I started at Whitecliffe knowing nothing so I have learned so much, from technical skills to understanding conceptual art,” says BFA Photo Media graduate Mish O’Neill.

Mish initially signed up for Fine Arts but after the first year she realised her strengths were in Photography which led her into Photo Media. That decision was obviously the right one. With her undergraduate degree completed, Mish is now working in two part-time jobs while working on her Masters of Fine Arts degree.

“I work two days a week as a technician at a commercial photographic and digital imaging lab in Auckland and I love it. I have learned a lot there about photography, file preparation, scanning and printing. The rest of the time I assist fashion photographer Guy Coombes, and work towards my Masters. Currently my MFA study focuses on the further development of my art practice. It is process-driven adhered in a romantic idealism with analogue photography. I use pinhole cameras or build camera obscuras to explore the magic and mystery of hand-made cameras and present unexpected views of the world. My photography underscores the value of our surrounding environment and how it affects us as individuals.”

Of her recent exhibition opportunities, Mish says “I have also been included in various shows during the annual Auckland Festival of Photography, at the NZ Art Show in Wellington and more recently a solo exhibition at the TSB Bank Wallace Arts Centre.”

Mish continues to enjoy the learning and support offered by Whitecliffe.

“I feel that my tutors, especially Becky Nunes and David Cowlard, go beyond their roles and stay invested in you and your practice beyond the time they are your tutor. They are forever helpful and at the end of the phone or a Facebook message when I get stuck.”

Mish O'Neill