The design by Tereora College student counsellor Thomas Wynne has won the annual competition for the front cover of around 10,000 copies of next year’s telephone directory.
The illustration shows a vaka sailing on the water with a setting sun while various sea creatures, including a whale and a stingray, swim below.
Wynne says the design came from a mural he and some students designed for the school. When he saw the competition brief, he made some changes and entered the design.
“I’m just rapt I won,” says Wynne.
“I really enjoy design, it’s quite different to counselling.
“It’s an antithesis of what I do during the day. I find it quite cathartic to sit down at my computer and design.”
Wynne says the vaka illustrates a journey, while the setting sun reflects the ending of that journey.
“The design has turtles which are endangered, a whale which is endangered and the shark is a symbol of encouraging society about conservation.”
Telecom Cook Islands chief executive Jules Maher says he is delighted with the high standard of this year’s entries.
“We’re always impressed by the calibre and the quality and that’s why we involve an external art expert,” says Maher. “We had Kay George this year, and she’s helped us in previous years.”
Maher praised Wynne’s design, and highlights the inclusion of Telecom’s corporate colours in the finished product.
“I think it’s very clever what he has done. He has incorporated so many iconic images in the Cook Islands – the vaka, the whale, the turtles, the stars and he’s incorporated our corporate colours well,” says Maher.
“It was very thoughtful and very cleverly put together and yet it had some simplicity which was quite appealing.”
A member of the Cook Islands Voyaging Society, Wynne says it is important to highlight the “harmony” between society and sea life.
Wynne beat 14 other entries to take home $1500 cash, a phone valued at $389, a Telecom sim card and $100 phone credit.
“The money is going to go towards my phone bill,” jokes Wynne.
The directory, which usually has around 220 pages, will be ready for residents by January.