For me, photography is mostly about showing the viewer something they may not have seen or cannot see with their own eyes; this could be a memory from the past you might want to see again or take a closer look at or something very small that looks even more spectacular close-up. Even as a child, I loved taking pictures, especially in the zoo where, if my parents would allow me to, I shot many rolls of film with animal pictures (we didn’t have digital camera’s back then). At first, they gave me my mum’s old 35mm Kodak camera, which of course wasn’t the right focal length to take the close-ups I wanted to make. When I got older, I saved up my allowance and birthday money to buy my first camera with a zoom lens.
Photography became serious business when I started working as a journalist for a local newspaper, during the last phase of my Master Business economics. Of course, I enjoyed the investigating and writing side of the job, but if I’m honest, I especially liked the fact that I was able to take the pictures accompanying my articles. Sometimes I did feel a bit silly with my DSLR camera, pretending to be a news photographer, when I didn’t really know how to set up my camera properly. Therefore, I decided to go to the Fotovakschool Rotterdam for a basic course in photography. After only the first lesson, I was completely sold and proceeded with their professional photographers program. In 2012 I obtained my certification and I’ve been working as a photographer ever since.

Animal photography

From a young age, photographing animals was something I loved doing, but during my education on the Fotovakschool, it kind of faded into the background, because a lot of teachers didn´t take animal photography seriously. Fortunately, the teacher of the last module, François Hendrickx felt differently and he stimulated me to keep doing what I love and explore the documentary site of animal photography. Because of the Growing project, which shows the growth and development of animals in the first weeks of their lives, animal photography sort of became my core-business. For the project, I’ve been in close contact with all kinds of animals. This is very interesting and teaching me a lot about them, because every animal is different and every time you are with them, you discover a new fascinating aspect of their lives.

Growing put me in contact with a lot of breeders and enabled me to build a large network within the animal- and pet industry.

Of course, I keep animals myself. When I was little, my first pet was guinea pig Bengel. A few years later, I became the owner of my dog, Small Münsterländer Joep, who sadly past away in 2016. At the moment I own four Crested gecko’s, Timmy, Olly, Bella and Pixel (Pixel is the crested gecko I followed for Growing). For the project, I have a number of aquariums with fish, shrimps and snails and I regularly have visitors that I’m photographing at home.

Biography:
Born in 1981 in Schiedam in The Netherlands
Works and lives in Nieuwerkerk a/d IJssel

Education:
2009-2012: Vakopleiding (professional program) Fotovakschool Rotterdam with specialization documentary photography
2001-2008: Bachelor and Master Business Economics University of Rotterdam

Exhibitions:
8-6-2019 to 1-9-2019: ‘Groei’ – Museum of Natural History Rotterdam
25 and 26-5-2019: Fotofair Hilvarenbeek
24-6-2012 to 26-8-2012: ‘Kunstwerk aan de winkel’ Rotterdam Nesselande
2012, 2013, 2014, 2017 and 2018: Pinkst’Art Zuidplas

Lectures:
30-11-2019: Photography café ‘Moments-Talk’
25 and 26-5-2019: Fotofair Hilvarenbeek

Winner of the 2019 Culture award of Gemeente Zuidplas