Photographer and artist Karl Hammer is one of those rare persons that was able to work himself up from a dark past into a bright future. Born in 1959 as the youngest child in a poor family in Amsterdam's Red Light district it seemed that the cards were stacked against him. But although Karl Hammer did indeed start off in world of crime, violence and abuse, he managed to overcome the odds. After living in the streets and in prisons in his younger years he shook off his past as a young adult and decided he wanted to make something of his life. But he had no idea yet what that 'something' should be, other than it should be something in the creative industry.
Because he had an interest in the television industry Karl Hammer knocked on every possible door in the early 1980's to find a job. He was eventually hired as a junior production assistant. Working long hours during the day he spent the nights teaching himself how to become a video editor. After more than a year his self-education paid off and Karl not only became a much respected editor but was eventually asked as television director. Next to that he became a radio host with a daily late night show. Several years after that he became one of the creative people that helped introduce commercial radio and television in The Netherlands. Karl's dissolute early life was now a thing from the distant past.
After a wonderful career in radio and television in which he had done just about everything that was possible, Karl Hammer decided it was time for a change. He wanted to break new grounds and started to write books. Again he was successful. His first non-fiction book about history's most bizarre art theft was published in various countries. But visual media kept intriguing Karl so he picked up a photo camera and started to educate himself again in the field of photography. This time his background as a video editor and television director enabled him to tell stories with photographs that are laden with symbolism and hidden messages. Called by some 'a Rembrandt in photography', today Karl has a fast growing fan base that appreciates his narrative art, his sense of aesthetics and his use of colors.