I clearly remember the day I decided not to sign the contract with the publisher who wanted my first photobook 'Cold - sailing to Antarctica', and to publish it myself instead. It was quite a risk, but one of the best decisions of my life. 'Cold' sold 10.000 copies in 3 prints - people looking for something else than the average photo book stuffed with fluffy penguins and overly saturated blue icebergs seem to like it.
After the success of 'Cold' life became easier. Publishing another book was not as big a decision as it was the first time. 'Hot' sold really good as well (and was voted 'Best Dutch travel Photo Book'), and 'Men at work' won a Red Dot Award and was sold out in bookstores within a year. 'Au!' - depicting the destruction of the Amazon forest in Surinam - is the only one that I didn't publish myself: KIT Publishers in Amsterdam did, but I do own the title by now.
My fifth photo book 'Empty' came out November 2014 and tells the story of life in the remotest deserts of Namibia.
In 2015 I worked on 'anything out of nothing', a book portraying the lives of Syrian refugees in Lebanon and Jordan. The book was published in December 2015 and the text is from reporter Rinke Verkerk, with whom I visited the area for three consecutive years.
Long story short: I sold 25.000+ copies of my own books. Not bad, in a market where publishing a photo book is generally considered something like filing for bankruptcy ;-)
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