Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
My name is Maaike Schauer and I am a professional photographer. I am specialised in child photography. Although I have a background/past career in the education management industry I decided in March 2015 to start my own business called Schauer Photography.
By combining my skills I try to create pure, simple and touching photography. I want to encourage people to appreciate the small things of life, see the beauty around us and feel rich with what surrounds us instead of getting distracted by goals of all kinds.
What would you consider your distinctive achievement?
The thing I am very proud of is that I decided to follow my passion and gave up a stable and safe career. Of course is has been really scary to do this (and still is every now and then) but I feel like I can finally just be me.
When it comes to projects I am really proud that Nikon chose me as their new brand ambassador and added me to the I AM DIFFERENT- platform. They made a short film about me and my work last December and I am really proud of the result. This has been the biggest compliment I have ever gotten so far. It’s something I always have been dreaming of. The best thing about all this is not at all the publicity. It’s the fact that apparently people are interesting in hearing my vision.
What are you looking forward to?
I love getting to know other passionate ‘creators’ and talk with them about their work, creations, ideas and thoughts. Sometimes this turns out in collaborations. I love collaborating with other people, it’s very inspiring and refreshing to work on something together. I love running my own business but I have to get used to work a lot on my own. I would say I am more of a team player than I always thought I was. I look forward to, hopefully, more interesting and exciting connections and collaborations.
Which advise will you give to other professionals?
Being and entrepreneur is like sailing a boat on a rocky sea. You will continuously feel like you are in the middle of the waves, sometimes on top of them, sometimes halfway and sometimes very deep down. When the moment is there again when you feel like you don’t know what you are doing, full of self-doubt and not sure what to do next you should realise that most of the entrepreneurs feel like this, every now and then. Keep going, and you will get better every time you leave another big wave behind you. I think that when you are serious and passionate about your job, you will always experience these phases and they are very natural.
What are the challenges that we need to overcome to make cultural entrepreneurship more accessible?
I think it would be very helpful if cultural entrepreneurs would take themselves, their products and the amount of work we put into our businesses very seriously. And then next ask fair and serious prices for their work. But I know, this takes courage. Especially in this branche this is a difficult aspect because people tend to think that creating art (in whatever form I cam image) is not really work. It would be great if cultural entrepreneurs would be able to find some way to bundle our powers and encourage each other.