Hear It!

Stefanie Van Der Vinden is our featured photographer from the Netherlands who has a soft spot for nature and enjoys shooting the natural beauty of wildlife. Here, she shares with us on how her passion has given her the liberty to travel around the globe and how she truly enjoys doing what she loves. Read all about it in the November 2011 edition of Hear It.

Photographer: ikachan / Stefanie Van Der Vinden
Country of Origin: Netherlands

1. Production Equipment: Please list the production equipment that you use on a regular basis (eg. Cameras, lenses, flash & lighting, photo editing software).
Canon 20D, Canon 100-400 IS.

2. What do you think of photography these days?
It's getting more difficult to make a living as a photographer because (semi) pro cameras are getting more and more affordable.

3. What did you want to be when you were younger?
A professional traveler, and what did I know back then? ;-)

4. Tell us about the time when you first got started in photography.
I was in South Africa doing some volunteer work and borrowed someone’s camera for that trip. That was what triggered my interest in photography.

5. In your opinion, what does it take to become successful in this industry?
Having good equipment, a good eye and lots of time.

6. What was your biggest challenge coming into this industry?
I don't enjoy photographing people, so that can be quite a challenge for me when shooting stock photos.

7. What are the best perks as a Photographer?
The opportunity to travel extensively.

8. How do you plan for your shooting sessions?
My shooting assignments are usually abroad, so planning can take months of selecting the perfect location, time and then waiting for the right opportunity, particularly with wildlife because it relies on a lot of luck for that one good shot.

9. How would you describe your work to first time viewers?
Nature and wildlife.

10. Do you shoot to what your heart tells you or do you go through a complex check list in your mind when you produce your work? Describe the feeling/check list.
I always shoot what my heart tells me to. I am not in it for the money, so my work reflects the things that I am really passionate about.

11. From your experience, what subjects gives you the greatest satisfaction? Any examples?
Wildlife, especially leopards, since these are quite elusive creatures.

12. From your experience, what subjects are the hardest to work with? Any examples?
Wildlife also. They don't ever pose the way I'd like them to :-)

13. What is your philosophy when it comes to your work?
If I don't enjoy doing it, I won't.

14. Describe who/what inspires you, tell us why?
Hugo van Lawick, although he was just a producer/cameraman.

15. What do you do when those creative juices just seems to evade you. How do you "get creative"?
I simply give it some time, it'll come back to me.

16. Tell us about a time when inspiration just hits you, and you felt the insatiable urge to create. What did you do with that energy?
I just went out and started shooting!

17. What have you discovered about yourself through photography?
I learned that there is more in life than making money. Enjoying what I do comes first.

18. Whose work do you admire the most? Why?
Andy Rouse (wildlife photographer). His passion for wildlife really shows in his pictures.

19. Do you have any advice for those who are just getting in to stock photography?
Shoot a lot and select only your best work.

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