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"Just be who you are, calm and clear and bright." - Richard Bach, Illusions: The Adventures of a Reluctant Messiah

Where We Make: Di Mackey

[This Friday I’m very pleased to host jet-setting photographer Di Mackey, who recently discovered this website through the wonderful rabbit hole that is the world-wide web. Di’s is the first 100% random submission to Where We Make, which makes me even more delighted to have her!] 

Di's Desk


I’m a professional photographer, a writer, and a blogger too. I’m a New Zealander living in Belgium and honestly … I never know which thing about me should come first.

I’m also someone who runs off to the sea and mountains in Genoa, Italy, as often as possible.

And the space where I make is  important … where ever I am.

So, of course, my laptop is central to that space and from there I build up with what is possible. Here in Antwerp, at my house, I have a cocoon-like space. I’m tucked away in the corner of our L-shaped bedroom. I hang beautiful things on that desk-dividing red wall, there in front of me, things that I love.

For Camille III

I also love books, so my husband built me a series of red bookshelves and there my very best books live.

In this space I have an external keyboard that is English (my laptop is not) and a much bigger external screen. These are luxuries for when I’m working at home.  Oh, and a fast internet connection too.

For Camille II

Quite often, over these years living in Europe, I have worked in places not my own. My second place where I make is in Genoa, Italy. It has been the same since 2008—a round kitchen table in a friend’s apartment on a tiny street called Via Ravecca.

My place where I make is pared down. There’s my laptop, a USB modem, and a plastic water bottle cut-down to act as vase for the flowers I always find on my first day back in the city.

Italian Desk

My camera gear, all 6kgs+ of it, and every single cable and piece of equipment that I need to  pack for the road has its place in that other space where I make. Sometimes I feel like a sherpa on Everest, as I move between worlds but honestly, it’s worth it to have that second, much quieter space.

I’ve worked in Cairo, Berlin, Madrid, Istanbul, London and out on Flanders Fields here in Belgium. In Brussels, in Paris, in Amsterdam. Sometimes on a photo-shoot for others, sometimes just working for me and my website.

And so I realised, while writing this for Camille, that my laptop is key to the space where I make. Flowers help but I guess I can make anyplace … and I like it like that.

For Camille I


I love the idea of using flowers to brighten a temporary workspace, and that illustration on the wall above her desk at home! You can find Di on Twitter at @DiMackeycom and at


1 Comment to Where We Make: Di Mackey

  1. Kate's Gravatar Kate
    May 28, 2014 at 11:48 pm | Permalink

    I agree about the artwork and flowers–both are fun and add a lot of color!

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Hi! I'm Camille. I only write stories that could never ever happen in real life, though I do believe in real-life magic. If we were in the same room I'd fix you a cup of tea, but for now we'll have to settle for a virtual connection. I'm really glad you're here.