The creative force behind our ‘Nostalgia’ Spring Summer 17 campaign, Michelle Van Dijk is an all-round creative maven who’s pursuits include photography, visual art and freelance modeling.
Suboo: How did you get into photography?Michelle: I fell in love with photography when I was living with my grandparents in Cape Town, South Africa. My grandfather had the most amazing film camera with a big zoom lens and we'd go on safaris and photograph our adventures. After every adventure he'd show me how to develop the film and we'd discuss the beauty of the photos. Creating images has always been my passion!
Suboo: How long have you been doing it?Michelle: I studied photography for four years. My third year was an internship and I decided to do it as far away from home as possible! I found an amazing photogrpaher in Bali who gave me the chance to assist him for seven months. Talk about trusting the process of your life - I only planned on staying in Bali for seven months, and I'm still calling Bali my home four years later! Everything happened the way its supposed to. I'm so lucky that I was able to start my proffessional career on this beautiful island.
Suboo: What equipment is in your camera bag and why?Michelle: Canon Mark III - 50 mm 1.4 / 35 mm 1.4 and the 70-200 2.8, and of course my film camera!
The equipment doesn't make the photographer. I don't need much to create what I love. Its crazy, but I am in love with my 50mm 1.4 and shoot almost everything with this beauty.
Suboo: Who inspires you?Michelle: I would say life is my inspiration. Living in the moment, creating and being inspired by the moment itself. The locations I travel to, the culture and the muses. I love to be inspired by the girl I'm shooting. Getting to know her exterior beauty, but also getting to know their personalities and capturing them as purely as I can.
Suboo: Where do you see yourself in five years time?
Michelle: Only taking steps into the right direction. After Europe, South Africa, Australia and Asia, I hope to work in America and South America. My dream is to work in as many countries around the world as I can. Chasing the sun, searching for waves, and capturing female beauty around the world.
Suboo: Tell me about being a model/photographer and how did that come about?
Michelle: Before I decided to study photography, I was asked to do a lot of model work at home in the Netherlands. It was a very good experience and I met a lot of great photographers who inspired me along the way. I'd rather be behind the camera than in front of it. My favourite thing about creating is the creative input that I have on all of my shoots - for clients & personal work. About a year ago I started my project #thegirlbehindthelens, which is all about collaborating with other photographers.
Photographer shoots photographer, and we have equal creative input. We learn from eachother and create together. We should share and create with other creatives to form the most honest and purest art we can. The fact that I am able to work on both sides really helps me communicate and build trust with my muses. The models know I can relate to them.
Suboo: Most magical place you’ve ever visited?
Michelle: All the places I travel to have something magical about them, but Cape Town and India are very close to my heart.
Suboo: Top three places you would love to travel to?
Michelle: Hawaii, California and Peru
Suboo: What do you do for downtime and to relax?
Michelle: Surf, yoga, meditation,gym, dance, reading books and watching tv series.
Suboo: Favourite Suboo Piece?
Michelle: The De Coup Beach Shirt in white. Simple and beautiful.
Suboo: What are you working on next?
Michelle: A campaign in Spain, photo trip to Morocco and for October a new adventure to Mexico and Nicaragua!
Suboo: What can't you leave home without?
Michelle: My Rayban sunglasses
Suboo: Describe your fashion style?
Michelle: Basic and minimal with but with a bit of edgy. I have days where I like to be sexy and feminine and then I have days where I like to be a sexy, crazy tomboy cruising around on my dirt bike.
Suboo: Quote you live by?
Michelle: Life's short, live it to the fullest.
Shop our Spring Summer Collection here.