Personal work

Nana, from Croatia

I photographed Nana on a cold day in November 2018 at her chosen location on Riverside in Cambridge. She very much likes the apartments in the background, and would love to live there one day.

Nana’s story was one of the most inspiring I’ve heard yet in the series. She’s very driven and ambitious, having left her family behind to come to the UK to earn enough money to realise her ten-year plan.

“I came to the UK mainly because of the ratio of the pound to the Croatian kuna; you can earn a lot more here. I left my daughter behind in Croatia with my family, which is tough, but I have a ten-year plan to make enough money to move back there and buy a house on the coast with holidays lets that we can rent to tourists.

“When I arrived in the UK, I started out working in a care home but I’ve moved on to other jobs since then – four in all. In the two years I’ve been here, I’ve tripled the salary I’m getting. I’m not unsatisfied with that progress in such a short time, but I’m keen to achieve even more. I’ve recently done an interior design course too, and now I work as a kitchen and bathroom designer.

“My upbringing is key to who I am, and I get a lot of support from my family. We had a war in Croatia, which makes Croatian people very resilient, I think. I’m very driven, and stubborn as a donkey. I will succeed.”

This is a picture from my on-going project The Europeans. I’m aiming to find and photograph someone from each EU member state living or working in my home city of Cambridge. If you’d like to take part, or know someone that would like to take part, then do please get in touch.

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