James was born on 29th of December 1987 in Ulvenhout in North Brabant the Netherlands to a British father and Dutch mother.
He grew up in the quiet city of Breda, home of the Dutch Royal Military academy. The Royal Academy has trained military officers since 1828, and has a prominent place in the center of the city he grew up in. As a young boy James frequently saw young cadets marching through the streets and although it impressed him, he never considered becoming a soldier himself.Partly due to the pacifist views he obtained from his parents and part due to the people he hung around with growing up. In his eyes the army was an instrument of the establishment, a way of putting the value of common lives lower than profit and imperialism.
His big passion from early age was photography and he got fist used Pentax Me Super 50mm camera and started out with street photography.He also gained a love for nature and frequently went to the surrounding forests, walking for days making photos. First it was birds, and as he got more accustomed to nature it quickly became squirrels, then deer, then the occasional fox.
He was often out for days, following forest trails and frequently camping by himself in the woods. Wandering nature gave him a certain peace of mind, a sense that some things are timeless, as if it didn´t matter if he was following that forest trail now, a hundred, or a thousand years ago.
Yet he watched the news and this would warp him straight back into reality. He was fascinated by the human condition in extreme circumstances.He read about great photographers such as Robert Capa, who would fearlessly walk into conflict zones armed with nothing but a camera to show the world the reality and the true nature of war. This is what he wished to do with his life, it became a calling. He obtained his Master’s Degree in Political Sciences from Amsterdam University and then studied photojournalism at London College of Communication. He also underwent a tactical and battlefield survival crash course, partly because it would look on his resumé and partly because it seemed like fun. As a freelance photojournalist, James worked in areas of conflict worldwide, and in the last few years mostly in Takistan, Malden and Everon, Sahrani and Tanoa.
He met his girlfriend, a fellow photographer named Sara Goldberg online discussing their photos. Sara was not a war journalist but she had a fearless character and as they were both adrenaline junkies. They quickly became travel companions and soon after that lovers. Their trip to Chernarus would be the closest thing to taking Sara along to a dangerous region though. Post civil war Chernarus was a location that seemed safe enough to go to, yet exciting and off the grid. Perhaps if things went well, Sara could grow into his lifestyle and profession, he figured. Anyhow, with Chernarus even popping up in tourist brochures now and then, how bad could it be?