Studio-4 is run and managed day-to-day by Tim Butler-Jones. Originally from the UK, Tim moved to the Hibiscus Coast of New Zealand in his early twenties, where the change of scenery and culture slowly changed his creative outlook. Having spent years in rock bands or making gritty urban music, Tim knew that this brand of creativity wouldn't mesh with the beautiful chilled out vibes of the Hibiscus Coast.
“I knew I had to change direction, and that started by going backwards and re-looking at my family, and that's what brought me to the visual arts.”
Tim has a rich family history, tracing his New Zealand family history to his great grandfather Herbert Tornquist, who was a New Zealand-born artist who studied at Elam School of Art, under Claus Edward Fristrom and also at the Chicago Art Institute. In addition to working as a commercial artist, he was a portrait photographer, whose work included the portraits of George Bernard Shaw, Anna Pavlova and Dame Sybil Thorndyke.
His daughter married William Jones, a successful artist in his own right who exhibited at the Auckland Society of Arts in 1954, at the New Zealand Academy of Fine Arts between 1952 and 1964 and with The Group in 1958 and 1964, who then moved the family to England where his son Mark Brazier-Jones went on to become an incredibly successful artist, sculptor, furniture maker, lighting designer, and engineer. Brazier-Jones’s work can be found in museum’s around the world, like the Victoria & Albert in London, Museum of Art & Design in New York, and Musée des Arts Décoratifs in Paris, as well as many important private collections.
“It's a lot to live up to, but pressure can break glass, or forge diamonds.”
“There's so much to love about my profession, and with the recent growth on the Hibiscus Coast in terms of population and businesses I see it as a real opportunity to be an asset to my community.”
And while Tim is too modest to describe himself as a diamond, he willingly threw himself into the change of discipline knowing that it would take time. Graduating from Auckland's South Seas Film and Television School and winning an award for his short film, Tim went straight to The School of Hard Knocks to start a company for businesses needing short promo videos for their websites.
These days Tim does most of his work as a stills photographer with his Nikon DSLR, creating beautiful imagery for websites, e-commerce and social media content while still pursuing his love of all-things portrait.