Belfast Telegraph

Home Life Features

Relatively Speaking: Dad and daughter, Jim and Khara Pringle

By Karen Ireland

Khara Pringle (42) is a commercial advertising photographer who runs her own agency in Belfast, which boasts a list of blue chip clients. She currently lives in Newtownards with her daughter, Aryia (3). Her father, Jim (67), is a retired teacher, living in Dundalk, who spends his time playing and coaching tennis.

Name: Khara Pringle

Age: 42

Occupation: Photographer

Relationship to Jim: Daughter

I have been in the photographic business for 25 years now and I opened my own business and studio in 2003. I am currently based at Royal Avenue in Belfast.

I am very versatile, which I believe you have to be in Northern Ireland, as it is a small market, but I specialise in fashion photography.

Some of my favourite shoots include large shopping centres, such as CastleCourt in Belfast and Rushmere in Craigavon.

One of my favourite clients is The Outlet in Banbridge, as they are very creative and always push the boundaries that little bit further. I also love working with Lunns the jewellers.

The job is difficult and it is hard to create a balance between work and home life, especially if you are running your own business.

I pick Aryia up every day at 5.30pm and spend three hours with her until she goes to bed. Then I am on the computer every night working until 12.30am.

It is a great job, as no two days are ever the same and you get to meet and work with some amazing people.

I have now found myself starting to do things with Aryia that my dad did with me, such as looking for shells, or climbing rocks on the beach.

Dad is a tennis coach and a great player, too, so I am teaching Aryia how to play tennis. Dad's a retired teacher and I think it is a terrible shame that he has had to give up work when his brain is still so active and he has so much more to give.

Dad taught me how to appreciate every day and every second of my time - particularly with Aryia. He's a workaholic - something else which has rubbed off on me. He is very driven.

Education was always very important in our household and my two brothers both went on to get really good jobs.

I studied for my degree and then my Masters and would like to do a PhD one day. That is all thanks to the encouragement of my dad - and my mum, Denise, too, of course.

Dad isn't creative like me, but he has really good taste in things. He likes to buy art and knows what he likes. He also has a keen eye for fashion and would pick out things for mum to wear. I think that is where I get my fashion sense.

Dad is also fiercely independent and that is something else which I have inherited. I like to take care of myself and am very selfish with my time.

On the downside, dad is a real worrier and that has followed through to me, too. We both often worry a lot about the future and where we will be in five years."

Name: Jim Pringle

Age: 67

Occupation: Retired teacher

Relationship to Khara: Father

I was a teacher for 45 years. I taught English and History in Galway, Montreal and Dundalk, where I now live. I loved teaching - it is a great profession. I could have gone on teaching for another 10 years.

I still tutor history for the Leaving Certificate in the south. I also coach tennis and have been doing that for more than 30 years. I love playing tennis and I taught all my children to play.

I like to keep busy, fit and active. I am always on the go and have something to do, or somewhere to be. Work and coaching and my family have been my life.

Khara and I have always been close. I helped her out when she was at school. The biggest bone of contention was that after she did her Leaving Certificate, I wanted her to go to Trinity College Dublin to study French and History of Art. I wanted her to have the basis of a profession in teaching which she could always go back to.

But she was determined from the outset that she wanted to study photography, so she did her degree and then her Masters at the University of Ulster. She was focused from the beginning - and she has succeeded.

She followed in the footsteps of my father, who was a world-famous photographer. He was a war correspondent based in Rome. His photographs still sell online today. Khara gets her creativity from him. She is a perfectionist at what she does and gives so much attention to detail.

Khara is articulate and a real people person. She has a special way about her with people, which you need in order to get the best shot. She puts people at their ease and makes them relax.

I am very proud of what she has achieved. She works very hard and has made a real success of her business."

Life through a lens...

Khara Pringle studied for a BA (Hons) in photography at the University of Ulster, followed by a Masters in future communications

She began working for the photographer Barry McCall in Dublin and then for Chris Hill in Belfast

She set up her own studio in 2003, at Royal Avenue in Belfast, and now works as a commercial photographer, with clients ranging from Ardmore Advertising to Bank of Ireland, BDO, Carson McDowell solicitors, The Outlet, Lunns and Argento

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