Denis Smith bought his first camera in 2009, and during the same year a huge life change saw him leave his home town of Auckland to make a new start in Adelaide, South Australia. The move away from Auckland and a high flying corporate life allowed Denis the time and space to deal with the depression, alcohol abuse and lifestyle that almost killed him. Photography quickly became the creative outlet that allowed him to replenish both mind and soul.

Within his remarkably short photography career, Denis has established a successful commercial photography and video production business, and has become an integral part of the global light painting community. He is renowned as one of the worlds most prolific light painters, and continues to inspire photographers of all ages and experience to explore and push the boundaries of their own creativity. Denis is super passionate about spreading the light around the globe, holding workshops across Australia and Europe, with plans reaching into North America and Asia. With an uncompromised openness about his own mental health issues, he brings art, nature and people together whilst influencing mental health acceptance and equanimity.

“Gear Doesn’t Matter” is the mantra Denis preaches. He loves working with beginner photographers with the most basic equipment and leading them into the night to create ethereal and mind blowing images. He believes photography should be inclusive and that we live in an incredible age where everyone, young and old, can create stunning images that spark joy and enthusiasm deep within.

This will be Denis’s first trip back to New Zealand since leaving 8 years ago. An emotional homecoming.


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