When Marja van den Hurk from Delft bought a new printer in 2001, it came with a free photo-editing programm. That would come in handy, she thought, so she started playing and trying it out and soon it grew into a real hobby.
Her works are layered. Marja digitally cuts out images and pastes them onto other digital images, creating fun combinations. Meanwhile, she does this in somewhat professional programmes, because hey, she has learnt a few things over the years. We call her theme Surrealism collection and this falls under the Fantasy & Daydreams collection. ‘I have been photographing since my childhood. At first it was still the usual house-cat-holiday snapshots, but after buying my first SLR in 2006, things changed. I could look at my photos right away, and thus immediately see which silly mistakes I had made,’ she laughs. Critical she certainly is, and that's good because you learn from that. ‘True,’ she begins, ‘and because of this I became more and more fanatical, more creative and a little bit better each time.’
Marja prefers to take her camera everywhere she goes, but since the thing is not exactly pocket size, her smartphone sometimes does the trick too. "Unfortunately, smartphone photos are not good for my artworks on Art Heroes. Phone photos are just not suitable for large-format prints, because the quality declines!”
Once your friends realise you're a bit handy with Photoshop and photography, they often enlist your help. ‘Like a photo of a very dear person, which then just doesn't look quite right in the picture,’ she explains. We know that what she actually means is that that photo is just a total failure. Marja knows how to transform photos like those into Marja-style awesomeness through magic. ‘Give it to me,’ I say, because nine times out of ten I can do something with it. A different crop, a filter and a bit of fine-tuning here and there and you have a completely different image that is worth framing. I really enjoy doing that and it is rewarding too.’
Stylist Rosanne: ‘A pleasure to look at. Art that makes you genuinely happy.’