a bit about the one behind the camera
My name is Cissy, photographer at Amara Photos.
For reading books I use reading glasses, translated - that indicates I am (well) above 40.
Oh well, what's a number when you still love jumping on a trampoline and eating ice cream.
Let me take you on the photography path I've walked so far:
when I took my first photo
Firstly, let me present the very first photo I ever took. In my defense, I was only seven and completely unaware of any technicality.
I vividly remember how great it felt to go outside, with my mom's camera, all by myself!
finding the love of my life
Leaping forward to 1995, I had just graduated from the University with a Bachelors in Marketing-Communication and Masters in Management & Organisation Science.
With that chapter of my life complete it was time to put work life on hold and spend my saving spreading my wings.
So off to Latin America I went for my first solo backpacking trip.
Why Latin America?
I wanted to get acquainted with my favorite animal - Penguins!
Away from everything I knew, I was completely on my own with just a backpack and my first DSLR camera.
It turned out to be a Life Changing experience in many aspects.
Latin America is where I found the love of my life:
My love for exploring new horizons and a passion for photography.
streetwise and camera smart
I learned to see every day as a whole new world full of wonders and was driven to master photography in order to accurately capture my adventures and my perspective.
I am mostly self-taught though I am grateful for taking various professional photography courses. (Shout out to KelbyOne, CreativeLive and Lynda courses!)
Most importantly I got 'street' wise by photographing varied themes, and keeping myself on my toes to grow as a photographer.
Experience- SAUDI ARABIA
sand dunes, princess dresses and weddings
Being part of the team of Studio Malameh Alfan in Riyadh I was privileged to photograph spectacular Saudi weddings.
Exploring the country, preferably off road, resulted in many precious experiences. Some of which got published in magazines and were shown in exhibitions.
food, events, five-star hotels, Ramadan,
Qatar Red Crescent
The Ritz-Carlton Doha gave me the opportunity to dive into the world of food photography.
With our wonderful ‘Thinking Out of the Box’ Chef’s recipe book as result!
Via the Community Footprint program of Ritz-Carlton, I came in contact with the Qatar Red Crescent. As only non-Arabic speaking volunteer, I managed to contribute through my photos.
JAZZ, JAZZ, JAZZ
capturing the tunes
Jazz at Lincoln Center comes to Doha? Whoa!!!
With my ‘Jazz in Doha at home at St Regis Doha’ photography mind map I convinced the Marketing director to be assigned to document the first year of the club. Well…
From the opening in September 2012 till my departure to Lima, Peru summer 2015, I was the assigned photographer for the Jazz at Lincoln Center Doha.
I was privileged to capture the jazzy vibes of so many amazing artists, among which Wynton Marsalis, Johnathan Batiste and Omar Sosa, resulting among others in many ‘likes’ on their Facebook accounts, advertisement campaigns and a permanent show display of the clubs vibrance at the clubs interior.
Living in Perú
Diving into Lima- the culinary capital of Latin America
No longer Perú is only famous for magical Machu Picchu. The Peruvian gastronomy is internationally well known. Several of the top ranked restaurants are at just walking distance of my house.
Together with the team of Living of Perú, I photographed at many new and well established restaurants. From the street food concept of BAO to the amazing creations of chef Misha - MAIDO.
And other culinary photography projects are summering - think Salt, Honey, Blue Berries, Caramel, Drift Wood and Japanese knives.
Exploring- Jurci Travels and Hugs
Back in Latin America I firstly needed to revive my Spanish. Thanks to Sheila, brilliant food journalist I work with at I was introduced to a home for abandoned childern. I work with the zero to three years old - playing, hugs and helping out with the food-bottle battle : )
Lucia and Heny - marvellous ladies - trained me to be a volunteer at the home for youngsters with special capabilities. Intensive, groundbreaking new skills to learn, yet so so rewarding.
Exploring Perú on trips, I realised I need to convert myself to be an early Birdie as well. As wow - the sunrise light is so beautiful!
NEW PATHS to EXPLORE
Back home to Holland
From 2007 till summer 2015 I lived at the Arabian Peninsula, I am very grateful for the opportunity I had to zoom in at Arabic traditions.
After several warmly 'Masalama's' (or Noisy Send Off to put it in Jazz at Lincoln Center Doha terms) it was time to go to the other side of the world.
Twenty years after my first flight to Latin America- Lucky me - the new home base is 'The Culinary Capital of Latin America': Lima, Peru!
My backpackers motto of 20 years back still stands:
Encantada de la vida!
I am excited to have the joy of capturing the culinary delights, colorful culture and breathtaking landscapes of Perú and Latin America’s countries.
Some long time dreams are in preparations to be realized in 2018. Think 'Taking La Panda to Los Pengüinos: from Lima to the South Pole and back'.
Keep an eye out for the blog to be launched January 2018.
Enjoy & Love,
¡ Encantada de la Vida !
Motto since my backpacking days,
with the intent to keep that up till my last granny days