"I like challenges," explains Canon Ambassador Ulla Lohmann, who has been a travel and adventure photographer and videographer for over 25 years. "For me, change is really good and challenges bring change. If things are too comfortable, they get boring. Any challenge is just an opportunity to work harder for my projects and to feel how much I want the story to be published."
Ulla's home is in Germany, but her work for organisations including National Geographic, GEO magazine and the BBC, has taken her to dozens of countries. Her particular passion is volcanoes and she has sometimes gone to extreme lengths to get the images she wants. One of Ulla's most dangerous shoots involved abseiling 600 metres inside an active volcano on the island of Vanuatu in the South Pacific. The unique and spectacular shots she took, just 50 metres from the lava lake, were the fulfilment of a lifelong dream. "The volcano felt so big and powerful and it made me realise that we humans are so small," she says, "but at the same time it really made me feel alive."
Travelling to exotic locations and shooting for prestigious publications and websites is a dream job for many people. But carving out a travel and adventure photography career isn't easy. To succeed, you need a range of skills and personal qualities including the ability to spot a unique story, excellent organisational skills and an unquenchable thirst for adventure. Here, Ulla discusses the kind of single-minded determination that has enabled her to succeed in this competitive field.