Languages in Photography: Glyn Thorneloe

glynThis week, Wordyrama Translations is hosting the interview of Glyn Thorneloe, a brilliant photographer who specializes in hotels, restaurants and other establishments in the Tourism industry. You may find examples of his work on here  and here . You may also find him on Facebook and here.

Please give a description of your line of work.

I am a photographer specialising in hotels, restaurants, pubs, property and travel.  I also have a background in travel operations and utilize this to organise photography holidays for those that want to indulge their passion and improve their skills in beautiful and interesting places.

What is your personal perception of the value of languages in general?

It’s not the flowery prose or long complicated sentences of the literati that are important in every day life; it’s more the ability to know the meaning that your audience will attach to the words and sentences you use.  When you can take this in to account, language becomes real communication and the accurate transference of concepts and ideas.

What is the value of languages in your field of expertise?

Whether you are trying to generate new business, understand a customer’s requirements or help a learner to develop their skills, the main tool at your disposal is language.  They say that a picture speaks a thousand words and, as a photographer, I believe this to be true.  But a thousand words also speak a thousand words, and they can do it in a highly accurate, logical manner.  Words that are well chosen and well arranged enable the recipient to gain a very clear and precise understanding of the message being conveyed.  In fact, I would suggest that a very good writer or speaker can often ‘speak a thousand words’ in a few impactful sentences.

From your professional experience, what thoughts come to mind when someone tells you she/he works as a translator?

Whether they are a ‘proper’ one.  Some people seem to think that if they can speak a second language, they can translate.  This could not be further from the truth.  To draw an analogy with photography, you can buy an expensive camera and read the manual cover to cover and you’ll still never be David Bailey.  For me a ‘proper’ translator has a deep understanding of the cultures and the subject matter they are dealing with.

Were you ever in need of translation services? If yes, please provide more details about the nature of the project(s).

While working in travel I have used the services of professional translators on many occasions.  Despite being surrounded by bilingual people, when it comes to legal or contractual matters, you need the confidence that your translation will be accurate.  You need to know that the translator will do the extra work required to ensure the conceptual meaning of a term, phrase or sentence is conveyed, not just the literal meaning of the words. I also worked on a multilingual hotel promotion website.  It was very important to me to choose translators that knew the subject matter and spoke the language of travel, as well as the language of the country.



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