We have decided to launch a new intimate style of interview into TheAppWhisperer – the world’s most popular mobile photography and art website. We feel it is important that our community feel close to each other, as it is this support that helps us to nurture one another and continue to grow.
Many of you, will soon find interview questions popping into your in boxes and we would really love it if you would take part and share more of your lives with us. I’ve decided to take the plunge and answer the first one, in the hope it will inspire and give confidence to others to take part. I hope you enjoy learning a little more about me…
Joanne Carter is the Founder and Editorial Director of TheAppWhisperer.com. A Professional Photographer and Associate of the British Industry of Professional Photographers. Joanne is also a Columnist for Vogue Italia, Contributing Editor to LensCulture, Contributor to the BBC and has worked as a Journalist for Professional Photographer Magazine, NikonPro Magazine, DPReview.com, Android Magazine, The Times, The Sunday Times, Popular Photography & Imaging, The Guardian, Digital Arts Magazine, London Features International, Which Magazine, Readers Digest, Graphix magazine, ePhotoZine.com. Joanne has presented at the Museum of Art in Seoul, South Korea as well as at The Photography Show in the UK. Joanne has also lead as Judge for various mobile photography competitions including the Mobile Photo Awards, MIRA, FiPA and mDAC. Currently as well as running TheAppWhisperer.com, Joanne is working on various projects, all related to her love and passion of mobile photograph and art.
What was your childhood or earliest ambition?
To be a script writer for radio and a photographer. As a young girl of eight years old, I enjoyed creating audio plays with my best friend, Rachel. We recorded each one to tape, we were determined these would be published to a radio show. Slightly later, I discovered photography and was never without a camera, wherever I went.
‘My daughter, Bella, 2015’ ©Joanne Carter
When I was eleven, my mum bought me a hamster. It was a surprise for me, after I returned from a school camping trip. I was so excited. It was a lovely little animal and we never knew whether it was male or female. My mum hadn’t asked in the pet shop and I never wanted to look. So, I named it ‘Shehe’ I felt that covered it. I wrote a story for my local newspaper about Shehe and the photographer came to my house and photographed us together. I won the star letter with my story and that spurred me on.
My first job was a paper round. I was a paper girl from aged eleven to around sixteen, every morning I would be up early delivering the newspapers. On days I had to go to school, I would dress the top half of myself in uniform and wear jogging bottoms on my legs, so I could get round the houses faster. I’d quickly change into my school skirt as soon as I got home and then jump on my bicycle and cycle to school. Sunday’s were probably the hardest as the Sunday newspapers with their magazine supplements were so heavy, I had to break the round down into a few shifts. When I was thirteen I started babysitting too and would find myself booked every Friday and Saturday night. I charged £1 an hour and my paper round paid £3.50 a week. My step father’s constant mantra was ‘if you don’t work, you don’t get’, so I worked and worked as I still do. I had a quite a profitable little business going as a child.
Private or state school?
State mainstream, both primary and secondary were heavily Church of England schools. I attended not for any devout religious reasons, purely based on the catchment area where I lived. The primary school was not too bad, the senior school was not good at all. But it enabled me to communicate with a wide spectrum of students, some were living extreme lives, some cosseted, I was somewhere in between.
University or Work?
I married young, and not long after that I had a life saving operation, a partial hepatectomy. I had liver tumours and nearly died. Thankfully, I had a good friend, she was a doctor, a gynaecologist and she put me in touch with the best liver consultant in Europe who worked at the Cromwell Hospital in London and it was he and his team who saved my life. My husband, helped me to rehabilitate for two years following this major surgery. I self studied at university on a distance degree course, after my children were born.
Who was or still is your mentor?
I have never had a mentor per se, I have always tried to remain somewhat detached but where my guard is completely down, I would say is with my husband and my children. My husband is a technical photographic consultant and highly academic. He is also a calm man (for the most parts) and that is what attracted me to him in the first instance. His soul soothed mine, so I think I will conclude, my husband is not only my mentor, but also my saviour.
‘Tracey Ermin at her ‘Fortnight of Tears’ Exhibition, 2019′
How physically fit are you?
Not as fit as I would like to be. I have a chronic auto immune disease, diagnosed in the past 24 months and in order to be able to move, without too much pain, each day, I have to inject strong biological drugs as well as ingest strong disease modifying drugs each day. This is a devastating illness and one I suppose that will cripple me, but mentally, I am very fit and able.
Ambition or talent: What matters more to success?
Both are important but I think the most important element is strength of character and resilience. I know many talented individuals but they lack drive, motivation is key to success but you also need a healthy handful of good luck.
‘Henry Moore Sculpture, 2018’
How politically committed are you?
Lately, I suppose I have become more politically committed. Brexit is something you cannot ignore in England in 2019. So many people appear incredibly disempowered today and I would like to help them to have a sense of belief again, self belief and belief in the system and that’s hard to rectify.
What would you like to own that you don’t currently possess?
I am not a materialistic person, I try hard to live without things as much as possible. That said, I do enjoy home comforts. I would love a huge, tranquillising, warm bathroom, with a view from the bath to a vast garden with green fields beyond. Within the fields I would love to see my horses grazing peacefully with a soft breeze blowing their tails.
What’s your biggest extravagance?
Books, although I would not describe them as an extravagance, more a necessity. I read a new book every two weeks, sometimes faster but at the minimum two every month.
In what place are you happiest?
We have had many many holidays to France, especially when our children were very young. We had a huge Chrysler Grand Voyager car and would load up three car seats, with a child. Our eldest at the back, he had the bench seat to himself, with cubbyholes for his audio tapes (he listened to the Harry Potter – read by Stephen Fry, on repeat). In the middle and in their individual seats, the other two would go. It was so vast this car, that even with their arms outstretched they couldn’t touch or pinch each other. We put the buggies on the roof rack, dog in the boot in a travel carrier and off we’d go. I really loved those trips.
‘My boys, Jake and Jovian in France, 2004’
What ambitions do you still have?
Oh sooo many, every day, I have another one. Most of all, I want to keep as healthy as I can, to realise each one. I intensely want to help disadvantaged people, women in particular, ones that feel crushed by life, I want to help build their resilience and confidence.
‘My daughter, Bella, 2018’
What drives you on?
Fierce loyalty to all that and everyone that I feel close to, to enable them to achieve recognition for the work that I adore. Everyday, I view new mobile art, it’s impossible for me not to feel invigorated and motivated when I view it.
What is the greatest achievement of your life so far?
Definitely bringing three children into the world and not wrecking them, I think that’s the greatest thing anyone can do. Professionally, too numerous to mention, obviously creating TheAppWhisperer.com, it has enabled me to meet so many wonderful people, the scale of this project has exceeded my expectations and it continues to grow.
‘My eldest son, Jake and I at his Masters Graduation, 2018’
What do you find most irritating in other people?
People that say they’re bored, I never understand that. I am never bored, I never get as much done in a day as I set out, I can honestly say I have never been bored in my entire life.
If your 20 year old self could see you now, what would she think?
She’d be proud of all of all my achievements, she’d grieve a little for my health.
Which object that you’ve lost do you wish you still had?
My parents fairy house. Well, it was not actually mine, but it was nearly. My parents emigrated to the Canary Islands 16 years ago and before they left, my step father designed and built a magnificent house here. Complete with handmade kitchen and huge cream aga cooker, that my mum loved. We were in the process of selling our own house and had that completed sooner, we would have been in a position to purchase their house but sadly, the timings were out. My mum would have loved to returned and stayed with us in her old house. She filled it with fairies, that’s where the name originated.
What is the greatest challenge of our time?
To resolve/reverse climate change, with empathy.
‘My son, Jovian, in France, 2004’
Do you believe in an afterlife?
Sometimes I do and sometimes I don’t. Many people whom I have loved and have died, I like to think of them, ‘living’ well in heaven. My husband is a realist, atheist and born catholic – quite a mix, he believes, when you’re gone, you’re gone. I’m on the fence but secretly like to believe in heaven.
‘My daughter, Bella, 2018’
If you had to rate your satisfaction with your life so far, out of 10, what would you score?
Eight and gaining.
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