The Nystagmus Network was proud to be granted permission to hold the first public screening anywhere in the world of a brand new short film about nystagmus at our 2017 Open Day in Birmingham on 30 September. Almost 200 members of the nystagmus community were present to watch the film. The film’s creator is a member of the Nystagmus Network.
Internationally acclaimed photographer David Katz shares his story in the film Through My Lenses which describes his journey from being diagnosed as blind at three months old to becoming one of the top sports photographers in the British national press by the time he was 20.
Through the film, David shows how he excelled in his chosen career of over 30 years, working as a highly respected and accomplished photographer for national and international newspapers and media, while keeping the fact that he is legally blind from almost everyone who knew him.
Remarkably, this career at the highest level of international media encompassed not only press photography, notably capturing shots of the British Royal Family including the Queen, and intimate images of celebrities such as Elton John and Amy Winehouse, but two long-term photographic documentaries, three political campaigns, and being chosen to be the personal photographer to a Prime Minister.
David created Through My Lenses in order to show what is possible with the right encouragement, persistence, dedication and commitment, and the spirit that anything is possible. His belief, based on his personal experience, is that there is no such word as ‘can’t’, and for anyone with a disability or impairment who is told that something is not possible, to know that it is.
“I was given my first camera when I was seven years old and have been in love with photography ever since,” he says. “I see things in a different way to other people. As a child I found it difficult to express what I saw through drawing or painting – a camera was the next best thing.”
Until now David hasn’t spoken about his condition as he didn’t want to be treated any differently to anyone else but feels the time has now come to share his story in the hope of helping others.
“There is some fantastic work being done out there, by organisations including the #valuable campaign, headed by Caroline Casey, which calls on businesses to recognise the value of one billion people with disability, and the Nystagmus Network. My hope is that I can add to that work and use my experience, knowledge and understanding to show children and their parents that they can achieve anything they want to. I hope my story proves that.” David Katz, September 2017