Yes, it’s February, and yes, I could have done this sooner. Nonetheless, here are some work highlights from 2013, and what I’ve learned to take with me into 2014.
From top to bottom, left to right:
1. I started the year with a new self-portrait that I’ve always wanted to take. It was an important moment for me, as it made me realize that I could do anything if I put my mind to it. I hope to take this with me in the new year.
2. This one was probably one of my favorite shots of the year: a commissioned photograph based on Reading & Reviewing!
3. In April I had a few wonderful shoots. I think this shot I took of two sisters is what reflects what I really want to do for my clients. To capture moments like these, and to capture the essence of how people relate to one and other or to themselves.
4. The second shoot was a boudoir session. Boudoir really kicked off for me this year!
5. My photos made it on several book covers, including this one in the United States. Yes, that’s me. With black hair.
6. Sometimes I’ll get asked to do some event photography. I really enjoyed shooting this party!
7. Another boudoir photo, which I’ve added because it shows me that I’m growing in this field. I keep improving and I keep loving what I’m doing.
8. A new profile photo was in order! This was also the moment when I decided to learn the basics of Makeup Artistry, which I’ve been focusing my attention on later in the year. I also changed my name: I will always work under Karin Elizabeth fotografie, but am henceforth known as Kaat Zoetekouw.
9. I got married this year! This had to be celebrated with a honeymoon to Rome, where I rediscovered my love for architecture and street photography.
10. During the summer, I worked a lot on redefining my editing style for indoor portraiture. This boudoir selfie was an experiment in lighting and editing. I hope to carry this over with me for new boudoir shoots in 2014.
11. Some client shoots followed suit, including this sibling session I did end of August…
12. …and a hilarious friends shoot in October. I never laughed so hard while trying to stay professional at the same time. It’s the best feeling when you leave a photo shoot and you had so much fun yourself.
13. I left Getty Images, and joined Stocksy, a co-op that redefines stock photography. While I’m still a little shy, I feel grateful to be accepted into this community. I’ve spent a lot of time in 2013 digging into archives, which is why I don’t have too much new work out. I hope to expand my portfolio in 2014 with more archival work and new shoots.
14. 2013 has been a year of learning. I’ve decided to learn a bit about makeup artistry, which I’ve mentioned. I’ve tried out new editing techniques. And I’ve also tried different branches in photography. While I love portraiture – and this will always be my main focus – I did feel it was good to do more product work as well this year. So I’ve been practicing still-life and food photography a lot this year, most of which I haven’t actually posted anywhere online, but I do hope to share more stuff in the new year.
15. One of my favorite shoots ever was a bohemian gypsy shoot with my model friend Tamar (whom I’ve worked with once before, in 2012). After this shoot I decided to work with models again. More on that later!
16. My final client shoot of the year was a mother-daughter shoot! This is one of my faves from that session.
Here’s to a new work year with lots of room for learning, experimenting, horizon-expanding, and new shoots! I’m excited!
This past Saturday, we called my in-laws to see if they were up for a game of cards later that evening. Sure! But please hold. Max (our nephew) had something to ask us. If we could come over tomorrow, because the kids had a surprise for us. Well, that sure made us curious… so we said we’d be there at 1:30PM!
We showed up a little after the agreed upon time. The weather outside was stunning: winter-y fresh, cool but not icy, with beautiful yellow sunlight warming our backs. So naturally, being on the countryside, we took the opportunity to go for a nice walk. My MIL, Sister-in-Law Liek, her man Paul and I (and my camera, Ferdinand – I will try to post photos later) were back after an hour and a half (!) and figured we’d earned the right to see the surprise now. Behold: the Football Cake. (I refuse to say soccer.)
It was fluffy, with the right amount of sweetness. Well done kiddos. Well. Done.
January came and went, didn’t it? Seriously, where does the time go? I’m always a little sad when the year ends and we enter a new one, because it always feels as though the year had only just begun. And then I think to myself, “well the new year’s going to last a while”. Blink. It’s almost February. Blink. Summer. Blink. 2016.
But I suppose in a way that’s a good thing. Time flying means I’m not dwelling, that it’s not a struggle to get through a day – which, trust me, is not the better option. So, okay. Fly on by.
I entered 2014 without resolutions (apart from work-related ones; I do feel like I need to continue growing my business). I always tell myself I’d like to change this or that about myself. Or feel that I need to do this or that. I think, at 31, I’m finally at the point where I accept who I am. And feel full-filled in knowing what I’ve done, what I can do if I feel like it, and what still lies ahead. That doesn’t mean I should stop growing and maturing. I do feel, for example, that there are still some things I should let go, some coping skills I could benefit from learning. But I’ve also accepted that it will come as I go. Because so much of it has already happened and I’ve automatically changed, simply by growing older, maturing. At some point in life – and this point for me is now – you just find that can handle just about anything simply by being, and by not giving up on being. (And if you can’t handle something, to understand that you’re not alone.)
I don’t feel that I need to be someone I’m not, or someone I’m not ready to be (yet). I also feel I don’t need to apologize for being me anymore. At this point in my life, and with the choices I’ve made for the future, so many things start to look so small and insignificant. I read a quote a few days ago:
“Live so that when your children think of fairness, caring, and integrity, they think of you.” – H. Jackson Brown Jr.
I try. As long as I try this, it’s enough.