A new book takes an affectionate look at what New Zealanders hold dear. Iconz, a collection of 64 graphic illustrations by Belinda Ellis, features mostly - but not totally - kitsch images depicting Maoridom, food, pastimes, people, flora and fauna. Check out ten of our favourite iconz and enter our comp to win a copy of the book below.

01 Aotearoa

Illustration / Belinda Ellis

Land of the Long White Cloud | New Zealand | NZ | Enzed | Maoriland | Kiwiland | Moaland | Fernland | God's Own Country | Godzone | The Antipodes | Downunder | Pig Island | Staten Landt | Niu Tireni | Zealandia | Nieuw Zeeland | The Shaky Isles | Middle Earth | Moa's Ark | The Best Kept Secret | Half-Gallon Quarter-Acre Pavlova Paradise

From 'A' for Aotearoa to 'Z' for Zealandia, New Zealand has been called many things, both formally and affectionately. The widely accepted Maori name is Aotearoa, usually translated as 'Land of the Long White Cloud'- aptly named given these islands' propensity for donning a cloak of woolly white cumulus. Zealandia, also known as Tasmantis or the New Zealand continent, is a nearly submerged continental fragment that sank after breaking away from Australia 60 to 85 million years ago, having separated from Antarctica some 45 million years earlier. It may once have been completely submerged, and most of it remains so today. In Ma-ori legend the North Island was a great fish caught by the demigod Ma-ui. He hooked it from his canoe, or waka (the South Island), - the vessel's anchor stone being Stewart Island. When the creation myth was conceived, the land mass was uncharted. Yet the North Island is fish-shaped - a stingray, its nose at Wellington and the end of its barb at the island's northernmost tip.

08 The Beehive

Illustration / Belinda Ellis

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One of the most important, and unusual looking, buildings in New Zealand is the Executive Wing of Parliament in Wellington, which houses the Cabinet offices and the Prime Minister's Department. For reason of shape rather than the activity within it, the building is popularly known as The Beehive. The distinctive circular form was the result of a sketch made in 1964 by visiting British architect Sir Basil Spence and, according to rumour, was inspired by another well-known image in New Zealand, the design on the Beehive matchbox. Construction of the 14-storey Beehive began in 1970, and was completed in 1981. An informal term for a politician or other occupant of the building is a 'beehiver'; errant politicians are referred to as 'misbeehivers'.

12 Buzzy Bee

Illustration / Belinda Ellis

A small pull-along toy, born in an Auckland wood-turning factory in the late 1930s, is probably this country's favourite piece of kiwiana. With its bright colours, quivering antennae, rotating wings and clackety-clack sound, it proved popular with the post-war baby boomer generation. While it was once rumoured to have been based on an American toy, recent research suggests that the Buzzy Bee is a New Zealand original, designed by Maurice Scheslinger. Its popularity and kiwiana status were guaranteed by a royal appointment in 1983, when it was presented to six-month-old Prince William in Auckland. As an iconic New Zealand symbol, a caricature of the Buzzy Bee was used on the hulls of the Emirates Team New Zealand boats for the America's Cup campaigns in 2007 and 2013.

13 Gumboots

Illustration / Belinda Ellis

In addition to defeating Napoleon, the Duke of Wellington inspired a form of protective footwear known in England as Wellingtons, or wellies. Perhaps because New Zealand had already named its capital after the Duke, wellies became known here as gumboots. The name is short for gum Arabic - a rubbery substance exuded by trees. New Zealand's first gumboots were imported, but from 1943 they were manufactured in Christchurch by Skellerup Industries Ltd. Although they are now made offshore, the company's current gumboot range includes the Perth - the original tall farm boot - and the more recent shorter Red Band. The gumboot has been celebrated in song by Fred Dagg, and Taihape, our self-proclaimed Gumboot City, hosts an annual gumboot-throwing competition.

19 Lamington

Illustration / Belinda Ellis

Another New Zealand tradition that appears to have been adopted from Australia is the lamington - a cube of sponge cake coated with chocolate or raspberry-flavoured pink icing and rolled in dried coconut. There are various theories regarding the name, but it was probably inspired by Lord Lamington, Governor of Queensland from 1895 to 1901, or his wife. Perhaps the earliest evidence of the lamington's arrival in New Zealand was a recipe published in a newspaper in 1902. The ingredients included three cups of flour, five eggs, three large teaspoons of grated chocolate, and 'dessicated cocoanut'. Acceptable at any time, the lamington is frequently sold at fund-raising fairs and as fare for 'ladies a plate'.

23 Kiwifruit

Illustration / Belinda Ellis

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About 1914 a Chinese fruit originally known as a monkey peach was introduced to New Zealand, where it was known as the Chinese gooseberry. But when Auckland fruit and vegetable wholesaling company Turners and Growers began planning to export the fruit to the United States, the name proved a problem. As a result, in 1959, the small brown hairy fruit was renamed the kiwifruit, owing to its physical similarity to our national bird. It was quickly accepted around the world, and by the 1980s it had become New Zealand's leading horticultural export. Unfortunately, 'kiwifruit' was not registered as a trademark, and other countries' growers used the name to market their own fruit. And so, in 1996, the local kiwifruit industry decided on a new name, Zespri, and the New Zealand Kiwifruit Marketing Board became Zespri International Ltd. The original green-fleshed kiwifruit was rebranded Zespri™ Green, while 1999 saw the launch of the newly developed yellow-fleshed Zespri™ Gold. Despite the rebrand, New Zealanders themselves refer to the furry flightless fruit as kiwifruit.

26 Jelly Tip

Illustration / Belinda Ellis

For young New Zealanders in the 1950s, an ice block - a frozen confection on a stick - was a popular treat. The best known of these was the TT2, named after Tip Top, which had begun manufacturing ice cream in the late 1930s. Ice blocks are now better known as popsicles, and the market is still dominated by Tip Top. Among the many brands of ice cream it produces are Trumpet, Fruju and Memphis Meltdown. The range also includes the Jelly Tip, a vanilla ice cream with a tip of raspberry-flavoured jelly encased in a shell of chocolate, introduced in the 1950s and still a favourite. The challenge for the Jelly Tip consumer is deciding whether to bite directly into the confection, or carefully to peel off the chocolate shell to expose its pink tip.

39 Tuatara

Illustration / Belinda Ellis

The tuatara may look like a lizard, but it is in fact a reptile. It has been described as 'New Zealand's most distinctive creature', and is a 'living fossil', being closely related to other reptiles that died out some 100 million years ago. Tuatara once lived on the mainland of New Zealand, but are now restricted mostly to islands off the northeast of the North Island and Cook Strait. Essentially nocturnal, the tuatara has the peculiar habit of sharing burrows with nesting petrels. It matures slowly, reaching a maximum size of about 60cm and an average age of 60 years, although some can live to be over 100. Despite being small and insectivorous, their Triassic ancestry and consequent dinosaur-like appearance have inspired many sci-fi movie monsters. The taniwha (a monster from Ma - ori mythology) is generally depicted as a similar creature to a tuatara.

48 Sir Colin Meads

Illustration / Belinda Ellis

Colin Meads, born in Cambridge, is perhaps the best-known All Black and the most famous rugby player in the world. He played 133 games (including 55 test matches) for this country between 1957 and 1971, and his physical presence on the rugby field inspired his nickname 'Pinetree'. In a 1967 game against Scotland he became only the second All Black ordered off in a test - for dangerous play - and during the 1970 tour of South Africa he played on against Eastern Transvaal despite a broken arm. He opposed the sporting boycott of apartheid South Africa, and went to that country as coach of the rebel Cavaliers team in 1986. In 2001 he was made a Distinguished Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit (the equivalent of a knighthood) and eight years later he accepted the title 'Sir'.

63 Flight of the Conchords

Illustration / Belinda Ellis

The Grammy Award-winning comedy duo Flight of the Conchords had its origins in 1996 when Bret McKenzie and Jemaine Clement met as students at Victoria University of Wellington.

They started a band and began writing songs, among them 'Hiphopopotamus vs. Rhymenoceros' and 'Most Beautiful Girl (In the Room)'. Their combination of self-deprecatory lyrics and riotous rhyming rap have seen them hip-hop to fame. In 2000, as Flight of the Conchords, they performed in Canada, and four years later enjoyed a sell-out show at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in Scotland. This success led to a mockumentary radio series for the BBC, based on the lives of a fictional version of themselves. An invitation to perform in Colorado, USA, resulted in filming a halfhour performance for HBO, and over the next four years Flight of the Conchords made a television sitcom, an EP and two albums, and went on two tours of North America.

Concept, icon illustration, book design and text ©copyright Belinda Ellis, 2014

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