Mieke received her first rowing medal as a coxswain at age 8, and after achieving her dream of winning at the Australian Nationals in 1998, accepted a four-year scholarship to California State University Sacramento in the USA, where she excelled in both rowing and academics, winning gold at the famous Henley Regatta in England in 2009. She was nominated as CSUS “Woman of the Year” in 2001, and received the highest student-athlete GPA in both 2001 and 2002. In her year of graduation, she was awarded CSUS Student-Athlete of the Year.
After moving back to Melbourne and becoming a teacher, Mieke became itchy for adventure and in 2008, accepted a teaching position in the remote Kimberley region of Western Australia, instantly falling in love with the ancient, rugged landscape. She began capturing photographs as a way of sharing her appreciation with family and friends, and this quickly developed into an all-encompassing passion for photography.
Since then, she has travelled the world seeking out remote and beautiful landscapes, and her authentic and stunning images beckon the viewer to immerse themselves in Nature’s beauty. In addition to her landscapes, Mieke specialises in Fine Art abstract aerial photography: photographing Nature’s incredible Art from helicopters and light planes.
Mieke has been a member of the Australian Photographic Society since 2011 and was awarded the Grand Master distinction in 2016 and the APS Exhibitor’s Medal in 2017. She has received fourteen FIAP Gold medals from the International Federation of Photographic Art. She joined the Australian Institute of Professional Photography in 2017, became the 2018 Victorian Travel Photographer of the Year, and this year was named the AIPP Victorian Landscape Photographer of the Year.
Mieke recently settled back in the stunning Alpine Valleys of Victoria (great for us as she only lives up the road!) to be closer to her family, and is now a full-time professional photographer; exhibiting her work, sharing her knowledge through presentations and workshops, and carrying out commissioned landscape and aerial work. At the festival she’ll speak to dealing with the imposter syndrome and how she’s learned to over come it, every step of the way. That little bugger is with us more often than we realise, I challenge you not to be moved by her imagery, as you hear and see how it nurtures her and how it can heal you.