Outside of the art world, you probably know Jitske Schols (1969) of the portraits she makes for the Dutch dailies Het Parool and De Volkskrant. Within the art world you might know her from Fotofestival Naarden, art fairs such as Haute Photographie in Rotterdam and Photo Basel where her work is shown by Galerie Caroline O’Breen or from her nominations and art prizes.
She was the winner of the 2016 Dutch Photographic Portrait Prize, which she received from photographer Koos Breukel. Can you imagine Jitske only started taking photos at the end of 2013? Only because her husband talked to into picking up a camera. And he turned to be just right, because Jitske discovered her passion for photography, and ended a successful career in marketing & communication to continue as a full-time freelance photographer. A bold move that did not do her any harm. It wasn't before long that she was picked up by talent scout Caroline O’Breen. The nominations, awards and recognition she received soon after accelerated her career as a photographer.
You could describe Jitske's digital portrait photography as classic – as it refers to the black and white photography of yesteryear - but with a contemporary ring to it that lies mainly in the deeply human emotions that she manages to convey without drama or sentimentality. Using such minimal details as a look, a gesture or an ornament, she knows how to capture the person portrayed in a fraction of second and to excite the viewer.
She herself says about this: "I make an image of someone you can stare at, which, because of its simplicity, offers room for your own imagination, interpretations and projections." But whether it be a politician or an artist, a child or a top athlete; and irrespective of whether the person portrayed is associated with power, humour, craftsmanship or seriousness, the result is always a personal and, therefore, human portrait that reduces rather than increases the distance between the person portrayed and the viewer.
When we asked Jitske to make a personal Collection for GalleryViewer, she immediately said agreed to it and as you can read her communication skills come in very handy. Enjoy!