A man with a big persona and an even bigger photography reputation is celebrating 100 years today.
Longtime resident and highly respected photographer Alf Rendell, whose 100th birthday was on Thursday, is celebrating his lifetime achievements with friends and family at the Tauranga yachting Club.
His daughter says it's great to see so many people come a long to celebrate his special day.
But in normal Alf behaviour, he insists “Age is just a number.”
With his driver's licence just renewed for another two years and still as smart as a tack, it's not surprising he has lived until 100.
Alf was 8 months old when his parents shifted from Whakatane to Tauranga in 1918.
Apart from three and-a-half years serving in Fiji and Tonga, before shipping out to New Caledonia during World War II, he has lived his whole life in Tauranga
He recalls the wet plate technology used by his father who travelled around the country taking photographs and found his love of photography through helping his father after leaving school during the Great Depression.
Having survived the depression and another world war, he captured several historic moments through a folding 120 Zeiss Super Ikonta camera from the open rear cockpit of a Tiger Moth biplane.
In 2015, with the help of friends, he compiled a book called Rendell's Tauranga - Historic Tauranga From Above, which features some of these aerial photos of Tauranga and surrounds, taken between 1946 and 1956.
The book became a publishing success when it hit Tauranga bookstores around Christmas 2015, quickly selling its first 2000-copy print run.
"It's was so much better than I visualised. People who saw the book for the first time said it brought back memories,” says Alf.
Alf now spends his time helping at the Te Puna Quarry Park helping out we he is needed.
He will be planting a Kauri tree in celebration of 100 years at the Te Puna Quarry Park on Tuesday, November 7 at 10am.
Alf and Simon Bridges.