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MY STORY

I JOINED THE DUTCH ARMY AT THE AGE OF SEVENTEEN. AFTER TEN YEARS OF SERVICE, I DECIDED IT WAS TIME FOR A NEW ADVENTURE. I PACKED A BACKPACK AND HOPPED ON A PLANE. THIS WAS THE BEGINNING OF A TWELVE-YEAR TOUR AROUND THE WORLD. AT TIMES THAT I WAS RUNNING LOW ON MONEY, I WORKED AS A HOLIDAY REPRESENTATIVE ACROSS EUROPE AND THEN CONTINUED TO DISCOVER NEW COUNTRIES. I AM VERY PROUD TO SAY THAT I HAVE BEEN TO SEVENTY-SIX COUNTRIES THUS FAR AND AM NOT GIVING UP TRAVELING YET. WHEN I FOUND A HOME WITH MY HUSBAND IN NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE IN 2016, I HAD A  LOOK AT MY TRAVEL PICTURES FOR THE FIRST TIME. THESE WERE VERY DISAPPOINTING BECAUSE THESE PHOTOS DID NOT REMOTELY REFLECT MY MEMORIES. WANTING TO KNOW WHY, I BEGAN TO LEARN  PHOTOGRAPHY FROM BOOKS AND ONLINE TUTORIALS. AFTER A WHILE I JOINED A BEGINNER'S COURSE IN CLASS AND QUICKLY FELL IN LOVE WITH THE CAMERA. I WAS A FAST LEARNER AND LOVED TO EXPERIMENT WITH DIFFERENT CAMERA TECHNIQUES. THIS ATTITUDE WON ME THE SECOND PLACE IN THE "CELEBRATION OF SUCCESS" AWARD AND WAS RECOMMENDED TO CONTINUE WITH STUDYING PHOTOGRAPHY.  I HAD THE IDEA TO BECOME A TRAVEL PHOTOGRAPHER BUT THIS DREAM WAS CRUSHED  WHEN I JOINED THE BA COURSE. I WAS TOLD THAT IT WAS TOO LATE BECAUSE BETTER AND MUCH YOUNGER PHOTOGRAPHERS HAD BEATEN ME TO IT.

WHEN THE COVID PANDEMIC HIT THE WORLD, I WAS IN MY SECOND YEAR OF THE STUDY. THIS WAS A BLESSING FOR ME AS BEING FORCED TO STUDY FROM HOME, I DISCOVERED THE DELIGHT OF STILL-LIFE AND STUDIO PHOTOGRAPHY. WHEN I WON THE FOOD PHOTOGRAPHER OF THE YEAR AWARD FOR THE FIRST TIME, I BEGAN TO RECEIVE COMMISIONED ASSIGNMENTS FOR COMMERCIAL PURPOSES. THIS GAVE ME SUCH A BOOST IN CONFIDENCE THAT I DECIDED TO DO THE MASTER'S DEGREE. ALL MY TIME AND ENERGY WENT INTO THE STUDY SO I HAD LITTLE TIME FOR ANYTHING ELSE BUT TO MY SURPRISE I WON THE THE FOOD PHOTOGRAPHER OF THE YEAR AWARD FOR THE SECOND TIME IN A ROW.

 

AFTER SO MANY YEARS OF STUDY (AND A MASSIVE STUDENT LOAN DEBT) I AM READY TO CALL MYSELF A PROFESSIONAL STILL-LIFE PHOTOGRAPHER AND AM READY TO SHOW MY SKILLS FOR EVERYONE TO SEE. 

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