Tête-a-tête with our photographer Otto van den Toorn

Who are you and what do you do?
My name is Otto van den Toorn and I am a beauty and fashion photographer.

How did you start as a photographer?
After twenty years of working as a model and dj/producer, it was time for a change. Photography in the fashionscene has always had my interest and this has slowly grown into my profession. I never expected that photography would become my job! But it is still my passion and I really like doing shoots!

What do you like the most about your work?
Every shoot you have to reinvent yourself. You have to decide on the style, the setting, the location. The places that you visit and the people that you meet make every project a beautiful adventure. And that is what I like about my job!

Do you travel a lot for work?
Absolutely! The trips that take you to places you have never been before are the trips that I value the most. On the other side, every trip is a new adventure. The uncertainties of the locations and circumstances make it exciting. Sometimes it feels like all I do is having lunch on the beach. However, it’s never a holiday, but always an adventure!

What is your favourite destination?
The area around Cape Town in South Africa is my favourite. Beach, desert, forest, mountains, cities: this area is so divers. And it has the most beautiful vibrant light that you could wish for, with the clearest skies I have ever seen. Sometimes, the blue coloured sky continues into a deep purple. It is magnificent! Such a pity that is such a long flight to Cape Town!

What do you like to do in your spare time?
In my spare time I like to skate with my longboard, take care of the bamboo plants in my garden or do something fun with my girlfriend Sandy. What I don’t like to in my spare time? Staring at my smartphone!

What is your personal motto?
Don’t make it more complicated than necessary. No one will mention it in a million years.

If I ruled the world…
I would put a lot of taxes on ugly cynicism, and grant a subsidy on ambition and cheerfulness.

What is your biggest dream?
Shooting a beauty campaign for a large make up brand in the desert, during the sunset and with the help of a huge team. Living in a small farmhouse with a bamboo forest in the backyard. Learning to bake a French baguette the right way. Oh and I hope that I can continue to have a creative profession. Or is that too much dreaming?