by David Maynard Published 01/08/2013
It's difficult enough these days trying to make a living as a photographer in the overcrowded wedding and portrait sector of the business, but imagine how much more testing it might be to be running a business that is all about communication when you happen to suffering from a major disability, such as deafness.
West-Sussex-based SWPP member David Maynard knows all about that particular challenge, having been born profoundly deaf. However, he's always lived his life by the same motto - 'Have a Go' - and he's never let his disability hold him back. Instead he's learned to communicate through other means and to play to his strengths, and he's never asked for anything more than to be judged on the quality of the product he delivers to his clients.
"I started out training as a draughtsman," he says, "and that was initially the field within which I was employed. However, photography was always a hobby of mine, and over time I became more and more interested in taking pictures seriously. Eventually, although I had no specific training in the area, I decided to take on some wedding and portrait work. I simply read as much as I could about what was required and picked up the rest through experience, and slowly but surely I started to get some commissions.
"My biggest problem was the fact that I couldn't use the telephone. I overcame this by asking for help from hearing people to take messages and arrange bookings for me. This, of course, was in the days before computers and emails became widespread, and with the arrival of online communication it's made life much easier for me."
Once David found his way past the barrier of initial communication he found that he had a gift for photography, and clients were more than happy with the results that he produced. He was also highly successful in terms of entering his work for competitions when, of course, the judges were looking for nothing more than the quality of the result.
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