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Blindness doesn't hold photographer back 0

STEVEN CHUA, 24 HOURS
Cathy Browne aims to compete in this summer's 12x12 Vancouver Photo Marathon. (PHOTO COURTESY OF ARIANE COLENBRANDER)

Cathy Browne aims to compete in this summer's 12x12 Vancouver Photo Marathon. (PHOTO COURTESY OF ARIANE COLENBRANDER)

Photographer Cathy Browne hopes to compete in this summer's 12x12 Vancouver Photo Marathon contest. The catch? She's legally blind.

But the 58-year-old Vancouver resident isn't letting that stop her from pursuing her photography passion.

"If you love something, and you have a passion for it and it drives you and inspires you, do it. It doesn't matter how old you are, or what's holding you back, just do it."

Browne has always had an interest in taking pictures but began her pursuit of it full-time last August after being robbed of her purse - which contained a keepsake reminder of her husband who died last March - at the Vancouver Public Library's main branch.

The incident inspired her to overcome her disability and break into the field of photography. She has since snapped for the 2011 Vancouver Social Media Week, restarted her blog, 'Seeing Things,' and began posting images on a Flickr account.

Her biggest break came in October when the Xi-Shi lounge pictures she took at the local Shangri-La property were re-tweeted by hotel managers and used as the inspiration for their menus.

It's clear nothing will stop Browne from doing what she loves.

"It's a real kick to be conquering something like this," she said confidently.

More information for this summer's photo marathon can be found at vancouver.24hrs.ca/12x12.


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