No one ever tells you how to cope with loosing one of your senses, you look online for any help and there is very little.
Looking through the pages and pages of web search on google throws you into this dark lonely place, how are you going to live like this? How are you going to work?
Believe it or not some “friends” may even disappear after telling them you’ve lost one of your senses.
I felt like everyone had abandoned me in my hour of need, I went into a very dark place and to be honest I’m still there. I don’t know how to live without my hearing, I didn’t realise how much I took for my hearing for granted until it was gone. This has happened to me when I lost my hearing. You go through through a grieving process that you never knew you could have over losing one of your senses.
I was a portrait and wedding photographer before I lost my hearing but after my hearing went I thought about hanging my camera up for good because I didn’t know how I was going to continue something I loved when I couldn’t communicate with my clients as I once had.
It was at this time I received an email asking to go down to my local rugby club and photograph a couple of matches. It is important at this stage to say that I loved sports photography but my college tutors had told me to give up on sports and go into portraiture so never got a proper chance to take pictures of sports.
When I got down there I felt like I was at home, I didn’t have to worry about my deafness, I could just take the pictures.
It was after that first match that I decided that I wouldn’t give up on my photography, just go down a different path. I also wrote down a list of teams and stadiums that I would love to work in one day. These are:
Leicester Tigers (rugby) at Welford road Leicester
London Olympic stadium
So far I have achieved two of those goals, last April I photographed a rugby match at Wembley stadium and recently I photographed Wolverhampton Wanders v Ipswich Town.
Here are some of my photos:
I still have plans to cross off everything on my list but I can’t stop thinking about that dark place. When I’m photographing sport I feel like there is a way out of the dark but I often lie awake at night asking the same question over and over again, why?
I may never know the answer to that question. But if I give myself a target to aim for maybe it will help me to get out of this dark place and fully accept my new lift as a deaf sports photographer.
The one thing that I have learn out of all of this is although you feel alone, there are people out there that know what you are going through. As my favourite TV show was so famous in saying in the 3rd series, You Are Not Alone.
I would love to hear your experiences of how you have coped with your hearing loss or if your a deaf photographer I would love to chat!
Please feel free to get in contact with Hannah via: email@example.com
Hannah says: “Hi my name is Hannah, I’m a freelance sports photographer based in Clacton on sea Essex. I have recently lost my hearing which has been a big blow, not only for me but also for my career as a portraiture/ wedding photographer. I fell in love with sports photography by accident when I was invited to photograph my local rugby club, after that I was hooked and started to work towards a new dream in photographing the Olympic games. You can follow me on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or take a look at my website www.hrfphotography.co.uk.”
The Limping Chicken is the UK’s deaf blogs and news website, and is the world’s most popular deaf blog. It is edited by Deaf journalist and filmmaker Charlie Swinbourne.
Please note that the views of the writers are their own, and not necessarily the views of the Editor or site as a whole. Read our disclaimer here.
- Ai-Media: Remote captioning. How to turn on captions on your smartphone
- Bellman & Symfon: home alerting solutions
- Deaf Umbrella: sign language interpreting and communications support
- Appa: Communication services for Deaf, Deafblind and hard of hearing people
- Signature: Find out about the Signature conference here.
- SignVideo: Instant BSL video interpreting online
- 121 Captions: captioning and speech-to-text services
- Hearing Direct: Online hearing aids
- The National Theatre: Captioned and BSL accessible theatre in London
- Doncaster School for the Deaf: education for Deaf children
- SignLive: Online video interpreting for Deaf people
- Royal Shakespeare Company: Captioned and BSL interpreted performances (see dates here)
- Royal School for the Deaf, Derby: Residential education for deaf children
- RAD Tax Advice: Tax and Tax Credit info for Deaf people
- Deaf Independent: Deaf care and support services
- Signworld: online BSL learning and teaching materials
- Performance Interpreting: BSL interpreting at concerts
- National Deaf Children's Society: The leading charity for deaf children
- DCAL: Find out how to study at the Deafness Cognition and Language Research Centre, London
- cSeeker: Deaf-led educational communication support service
- Signed Culture: Advocating for BSL access to arts and culture
- SignHealth: healthcare charity for Deaf people
- CJ Interpreting: communication support in BSL
- Sign Solutions:, language and learning
- Action Deafness Communications: sign language and Red Dot online video interpreting
- BSLcourses.co.uk: Provider of online BSL courses
- British Society for Mental Health and Deafness: Promoting positive mental health for deaf people
- deafPLUS: Money advice line in BSL
- Hamilton Lodge School in Brighton: education for Deaf children
- Lipspeaker UK: specialist lipspeaking support
- Ozen: Australian hearing aid specialists
- Elmfield School, Bristol: Inclusive education for Deaf pupils
- Exeter Deaf Academy: education for Deaf children