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Awards

Bronte Spielvogel and Steve Carey are February 2024’s Top PR/Comms People

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As the new year moves into its third month it’s time to recognise two more outstanding PR and Media Comms people for the month of February 2024. This is when we start seeing a flood of emails coming in after the excitement of CES calms down.

Remember, these are the people who ensure we get review devices on time while answering the tough questions. It’s important to note that while these operators help facilitate news and reviews, they have no say in our stories.

So with that .. Image Matrix Tech is pleased to announce that Bronte Spielvogel from CampaignLab is the winner of BEST AGENCY OPERATOR FEBRUARY 2024.

Bronte Spielvogel, Account Manager CampaignLab

Bronte is an account manager at one of the best agencies in the business. Clients Bronte works with include Hertz/Thrifty, Fujifilm Australia, Zagg and OPPO.

Once again – Bronte ‘gets it’. This is an important recurring theme in these awards.

Too many PR and Media operators get caught up with review policies that do not really serve the needs of the media. We have vastly different requirements when it comes to access to products, spokespeople and assets. I’m pleased to report that Bronte and the CampaignLab team not only understand this, they set a standard hard to match.

Bronte on duty with client Thrifty

First of all, Bronte is a joy to work with when it comes to product announcements. Often the timeline for gear is stretched, or broken up but other events that intervene. I’ve done this many times with Fujifilm cameras. I do not like rushing my reviews of cameras. It takes time for nature to deliver that great shot or for people to become available.

I’ve also gained greater knowledge and expertise when it comes to Fujifilm products (I used to develop Fujifilm in one of the word’s best labs back in the day) especially their cameras and lenses. Last week I was able to show my Sky News audience the hottest camera on the planet at the moment, the X100VI.

Fujifilm’s X100VI made an appearance with Djuro Sen Sky News Weekend Edition

One of the best interactions I’ve had with Bronte is during a shooting phase with Hertz and its EV rentals campaign. I was able to get access to Polestar 2 vehicles in Tasmania, Queensland, NSW and South Australia. But in Adelaide I had a problem. The EV didn’t have a enough range to make it to my destination, Whyalla. So, ten minutes after I called Bronte about my problem, a replacement ICE vehicle was ready to roll. Now that’s trouble shooting.

Hertz ev CAMPAIGN ON SKY NEWS WEEKEND EDITION

There are so many more great examples I could write about but that would take all day to read. Essentially, Bronte has been a fantastic operator, not just last month but over the last few years I’ve known her. The gang at CampaignLab know how to have a good time too. A lot of their functions are about fun and the message. Why not do both I say?

Bronte and the team enjoy their work

Here’s something you might not know about Bronte, she recently became a marriage celebrant. So if you’re looking to tie the knot, then drop Bronte a line at marriedbybronte.com.au.

Congratulations Bronte for being named our agency winner – February 2024.

BEST IN-HOUSE

The in-house PR/Comms job is a pressure position and one that can make or break a story.

So I’m extremely pumped to announce Steve Carey, General Manager Media, Telstra Corporate Affairs is BEST IN-HOUSE FEBRUARY 2024.

Steve Carey General Manager Media, Telstra Corporate Affairs

Despite being a Hawthorn supporter, Steve is a legend. He’s also one of the best in-house operators I’ve ever worked with, or against. Again, Steve knows the game and knows what I need for my audience and readers.

Last month Steve supplied crucial b-roll I was able to use to tell a very important, Temporary Disaster Roaming story on Sky News Weekend Edition.

Temporary Disaster Roaming was an important story that needed video b-roll support

But that’s just the tip of the iceberg when it comes the value that Steve brings to the media game in Australia. Let’s face it, it’s hard to make people like telcos. But Steve has the ability to bring communication stories to life.

Steve Carey helps set up our MWC coverage in Barcelona

So whether we’re in Barcelona for Mobile World Congress, or at Telstra’s Blue Tick Lab which is in a secret location, we always get a good yarn with pictures to match.

One of the most important aspects to Steve’s job is background briefing. Wireless communications is a technically challenging subject. But Steve makes sure that we all have a good understanding of the tech and the strategy behind it. He does this far better than everyone else.

Steve Carey at Telstra’s Blue Tick Lab

Steve also handles a crisis extremely well. When things go wrong, we can always rely on Steve to aim up with a Telstra heavy. He straddles the corporate and consumer worlds with ease and most of all … he’s a top bloke.. for a Hawks supporter.

Steve Carey celebrates Djuro Sen’s win at the Lizzies

Congratulations Steve, you thoroughly deserve this month’s award.

WHY IS IMAGE MATRIX TECH DOING THIS?

The process of creating great review videos can’t happen without the help of competent, energetic, sharp media relations comms people. They send out the info, supply the product and help answer our technical questions so we can better inform the public.

PR/Comms people are often easy targets. We want to change that.

So that’s why on the first day of every month, Image Matrix Tech will be acknowledging the best comms people and agencies we deal with for our tech coverage from the previous month.

Yes, there are bad ones but they’ll never get a mention in these awards.

It’s all about being positive.

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Helen Luxton

    March 8, 2024 at 4:17 pm

    Go Bronte girl, GO
    Congrats, love you to the moon and back.
    Mimi

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Awards

Simon Malik and Bruce Bealby are March 2024’s Top PR/Comms People

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March was an insanely busy month in tech and that means plenty of emails and phone calls from tech PR people. It’s important to note that while these operators help facilitate news and reviews, they have no say in our stories.

So with that said .. Image Matrix Tech is pleased to announce that Simon Malik from Herd MSL is the winner of BEST AGENCY OPERATOR MARCH 2024.

Simon Malik from Herd MSL

I’ve been working with Simon for several years, going back to N2N Communications. He is an absolute delight to work with and relationships matter in the media game. Someone you can trust from the outset is someone that will ensure the job gets done. It also helps that Simon is always understanding and calm.

Herd MSL handles some big tech clients like Meta and Lenovo. I have a particular soft spot for the team at Herd MSL because they managed the liaison with Wing Aviation during my award winning exclusive documentary about drone deliveries in Canberra.

I deal with Simon about Meta regularly, especially VR, which I’ve been covering for a long time. But recently the main client we’ve been working with is Lenovo. Last month Simon was able to work around my requirements for a media briefing at the Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix.

Lenovo F1 Grand Prix Coverage Revealed Amazing Broadcast Tech

F1 has very strict rules for media covering each Grand Prix and Simon’s tireless work across many time zones not only delivered the result I needed but it showed excellent initiative. I wish this was more common in the business.

Simon’s work has led to increased coverage of Lenovo in this market. Especially here at Image Matrix Tech and Sky News. The best example I can point to is the Lenovo Yoga Book 9i EVO, which I thought was the best device released in 2023.

I really liked this laptop but I needed more time with it to get a true understanding of the use case for a dual-screen notebook. Simon made sure I had more time with the device and that enabled me to form a strong opinion about the form factor and capabilities of the Yoga Book 9i EVO. No fuss, no worries.

Lenovo Yoga Book 9i EVO was our device of the year in 2023

When I’m onto something good, it is counterproductive if an agency sticks to a ‘two week review period’ before I finish getting the review right. Quality video analysis takes more time. This requires some juggling from the agency but the rewards will come, as they did for Lenovo. Good products deserve a good run.

Simon is also a keen street photographer. Another reason why I like him. Check out Simon’s Instagram page.

Congratulations Simon for being named our agency winner – March 2024.

BEST IN-HOUSE

The in-house PR/Comms job is a pressure position and one that can make or break a story.

It is with great pleasure that I announce Bruce Bealby, General Manager – Marketing Epson Australia as BEST IN-HOUSE MARCH 2024.

Bruce Bealby, General Manager – Marketing, Epson Australia

Although Bruce is GM of Marketing, this award is based on the editorial interactions we’ve had over the years and especially in March. A key event for members of the Australian media was a ‘fireside’ chat with Epson’s global president Mr. Yasunori Ogawa.

I was deeply honoured to be chosen among the elite few to sit down with Mr Ogawa. Bruce works hand-in-hand with previous agency winner, Salvatore Di Muccio to provide excellent access to Epson people and products .. and this was a big one.

Bruce Bealby on the far right with Australian media and Epson team including global president Mr. Yasunori Ogawa.

Bruce handled this session with great skill given translations were required. We had supplied some questions in advance to help speed up the process and I was pleased to hear Bruce read out several of my questions. I’m still putting together my piece on this chat as it was wide-ranging in its scope.

Bruce, like all our winners, is a terrific person to deal with over media matters. I think as a GM of Marketing, Bruce is one of the best in the business. Epson is fortunate to have him on board.

Bruce can also present to camera, which has helped me in other reviews, like the LS12000 projector. See below.

ACCESS TO EPSON’S PRODUCTS HAS BEEN HASSLE-FREE

Bruce not only covers the big picture, he’s knowledgeable when it comes to technical details. Far too many PR people are not tech savvy. It sounds silly when talking about the tech business, but it’s absolutely true. I often get questions deferred because the person doing the briefing is woefully poor on the technical details.

I remember having lunch with Bruce and Salvatore back in 2019. I explained how I do business. I run my own timeline (when suitable) and ever since then we’ve worked brilliantly together, whether I’m reviewing printers or projectors.

Congratulations Bruce, you thoroughly deserve this month’s award.

WHY IS IMAGE MATRIX TECH DOING THIS?

The process of creating great review videos can’t happen without the help of competent, energetic, sharp media relations comms people. They send out the info, supply the product and help answer our technical questions so we can better inform the public.

PR/Comms people are often easy targets. We want to change that.

So that’s why on the first day of every month, Image Matrix Tech will be acknowledging the best comms people and agencies we deal with for our tech coverage from the previous month.

Yes, there are bad ones but they’ll never get a mention in these awards.

It’s all about being positive.

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AI

Image Matrix Tech on Sky News: Google Pixel 7a

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In Sunday’s segment on Sky News Australia (Weekend Edition with Tim Gilbert) we took a look at Google’s latest Pixel devices, the Pixel 7a and Pixel Tablet.

We also covered some of the software announcements from Google I/O, Google’s yearly developers conference. And of course, that includes AI.

GOOGLE PIXEL IS SMART BUT THE NOKIA XR21 IS TOUGHER

The Nokia XR21 is the new toughness champion without the bulky looks. It’s just gone on sale in Australia and I’ve been testing its ruggedness.

Tough phone with good looks: Nokia XR21

IP69K – MILITARY GRADE RATING BUT LOOKS LIKE A NORMAL PHONE

  • Survive being dropped from 1.8m high 
  • Last in 1.5m of water for up to an hour 
  • Withstand a 100-bar pressure water jet at 80°C
  • Operate in temperatures between -20°C and +55°C
  • Capture imagery at night thanks to a double flash camera and advanced low light imaging capabilities 
  • Be used with wet hands and gloves  
  • Keep you going with 2-day battery, and fast charging should you need to make a pit stop
  • $799 

CANON’S NEW CAMERA FOR VLOGGERS

Next month Canon will start selling the PowerShot V10. A purpose built vlogging camera which reminds me of the original old Flip Video camera. 

Canon PowerShot V10 for vloggers

The PowerShot V10 key features:

·       Wide angle lens focal length 6.6mm (35mm equivalent focal lengths are 18mm in stills and 19mm in video mode), f/2.8 maximum aperture 

·       Movie recording in 4K UHD at 29.97/25.00 fps and Full HD at 59.94/50.00 fps 

·       Face-tracking AF 

·       Movie IS Mode

·       Large stereo microphone

·       Built-in stand (easy tilt adjustment up to 30 degrees)

·       JPEG still image shooting, equivalent to Scene Intelligent Auto

The PowerShot V10 will be available in Australia from June 2023. RRP of $699 

AWARD WINNING COVERAGE

My mini-doco on Wing Aviation – ‘Delivering the Goods‘ was recognised at the Australian IT Awards, Friday night. It was my third award.

It was the night of nights for the Australian tech media industry. I produced a behind-the-scenes global exclusive at Wing HQ in Canberra.

Djuro Sen winning his third Australian IT Award

In previous years I won best reviewer. This is most important category to me when it comes to our Weekend Edition viewers and at the top of the list are TV reviews. They are expensive products and consumers deserve quality, in-depth reviews. 

The first of the 2023 TV review videos will be online today. 

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Awards

Mandy Walker ACS Cinematographer of the Year

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Mandy Walker AM ACS ASC has won the prestigious Australian Cinematographer of the Year Milli Award. Walker also won a Gold Tripod in the Feature Films – Budget $2m and over category for her work on Elvis.

The win was announced at this year’s Fujinon Fujifilm Australian Cinematographers Society (ACS) National Awards held at Luna Park in Sydney.

It’s been a year to remember for Walker who made a huge breakthrough for women by recently winning best cinematography at the Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts Awards (AACTA) and the American Society of Cinematographers (ASC) feature-film award for Elvis.

Mandy Walker’s work on Elvis was recognised in Australia and USA

Walker is leading the way for women in the industry, becoming the first female to win the AACTA award, the ASC award and now this.

“It’s an honour and privilege to have won the Milli and to have worked on Elvis with so many Australian filmmakers who are undeniably at the top of their game, said Walker.

“As a team we created an incredibly special piece of cinema.

“Australian cinematographers continue to create some of the best work across the globe and thus, again, I am truly humbled to win this award.

“Thank you also to the ACS and all of their sponsors, as we wouldn’t be here without you.”

2023 Milli winner Mandy Walker AM ACS ASC

ACS national president, Erika Addis presented Hall of Fame Awards to David Gribble ACS, Laurence McManus ACS and Robert Krasker BSC ASC, the Life Membership Award to Mark Evans and Ron Windon ACS Contribution Awards to Richard Chataway ACS and James Cunningham.

Joanna Cameron was given the John Leake OAM ACS Emerging Cinematographer Award and the National Judges Merit Award went to Jonathon Le Grice for Echoes of Darkness.

The Bob Miller ACS Technical & Innovation Achievement Award was taken out by Mark Ruff.

The ACS CineKids 13-15 years old Gold Award went to Cathryn Alford for The Last Haven and a Gold Award for Student Cinematography was also awarded to Jonathon Le Grice for Echoes of Darkness.

Other Gold Tripod winners included Tony Luu ACS who won the John Bowring ACS Station Breaks & Promos for the SBS “We All” Campaign, Alice Stephens took home the Music Videos award for Faces by Stephanie Cherote and James Cannon ACS who won the Neil Davis International News award for War in Ukraine – Retreat from Iprin.

The Current Affairs award went to Mathew Marsic for Pacific Capture and Dave May won in Entertainment & TV Magazine for Andrea Lam – Live at Sydney Opera House.

The Ron Taylor AM ACS & Valerie Taylor AM Wildlife & Nature award went to Benjamin Cunningham ACS for The Mating Game – Fiddler Crabs – S1E2, the Documentaries award went to Mitchell Woolnough for Dead on arrival, Dramatised Documentaries was won by Carl Allison for Mad Martha and Bob Nguyen ACS took out the gong for Short Films with Black Hen.

The Gold Tripod for Feature Films – Budget under $2m also went to Bob Nguyen ACS for Muoi – The Curse Returns.

ACS national president Erika Addis

“I would like to wholeheartedly congratulate Mandy on winning the Milli and also all the other award winners for their amazing and inspiring work,” said ACS National President Erika Addis.

“It has been a remarkable year for Australian cinematographers with other recent successes including Jules O’Loughlin ACS ASC who recently won the ASC’s Outstanding Achievement in Cinematography in Episode of a One-Hour Commercial Television Series award and Greig Fraser ACS ASC who was nominated for the ASC’s best cinematography award for his work on The Batman.

“I would also like to thank Simon Murphy and all at FUJIFILM FUJINON, our Major National Sponsor, for their incredible and unparalleled support of our society.”

Other Gold Tripod Winners included:

Corporate – Corporate Branding & Advertising – Christian Fitzpatrick ACS for King Island Distillery

Corporate – Branded Content, Education & Events – Matthew Allard ACS for Culinary Journey with Marriott Bonvoy

Commercials – Local / Regional – Liam Gilmour ACS for Crown Towers

Commercials – National / International – Edward Goldner ACS for The Story of Dan Murphy

For a complete list of 2023 Australian Cinematographers Society National Awards winners go to: http://www.cinematographer.org.au

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