John van Helvert was born in Amsterdam in the Netherlands. As a young boy, he lived a few years in New York city and a little town near Toronto in Canada. After attending high school in the Netherlands John first studied the classical guitar at the Royal Conservatory of Amsterdam. Later on he studied photography at the Photography Academy of Amsterdam. John works both in the studio and on location. Traditionally he started out working on film, using only the best of photographic equipment. Back in 1996, John also entered into the learning curve of high end digital photography. For years, he used analog and digital equipment side by side and which camera to use depended on the specific demands of the assignment. John's growing interest in digital photography has gained him recognation from many companies that produce high end digital camera's. Often, during a location shoot, John is asked to test a specific digital camera and give a review in a professional Dutch camera magazine: The Photographer. Today, most of the assignments are executed with high end digital equipment from Phase One and Nikon. The traditional Darkroom has been traded in for the modern digital Lightroom, where John manages the complete In House digital workflow.
Since the start of his photography career in 1992 John has worked for a very diverse range of clients like KLM, Yamaha Motor, Hagemeyer, Peek Traffic, Ministerie van Binnenlandse Zaken, R.D.W., Rabobank, Garantibank, Armstrong, General Motors, Boston Whaler, Techsonic Industries, Shimano, G3-Boats, Shakespeare Industries, Normark, Rapala, and Lowrance Electronics. Many of these clients are based in the Netherlands, Germany and the USA. Most of these assignments where done through advertisement agencies.
Over the years, John has been working for several glossy magazines as well, such as National Geographic, Miljonair, Residence, Elegance, Hide&Chic, KLM-Flying Dutchman, KLM-Agent, ANWB-Reizen, Portfolio, Cosmopolitan, Avenue, Playboy, Man of all Seasons and The Photographer. For most of these magazines, John has traveled to many different countries in the world to make photographic essays and travel-productions. His most recent journeys took him to Cuba, Belize, Costa Rica, Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, Mekong Delta, China, New Zealand, Fiji Islands, Iceland, Greece, Tunisia, Sardinia, Ibiza, U.S.A., Canada, Alaska, Spain, Norway, England, Scotland and Ireland. Specific city trips included New York, Boston, Washington, Philadelphia, London, Paris, Antwerp, Prague, München, Barcelona, Athens, Shanghai, Peking, Bangkok, Phnom Penn and Luang Prabang.
John has won prizes in national and international competitions, amongst which the prize of the City of Antwerp. He also participated in an international Hasselblad exhibition in Cologne (Germany) and New York. Over the years several photographs of John have been nominated in the PANL books (Photographic Association of the Netherlands).
In 1999, work of John was selected by the AOP (the Association of Photographers England) as part of an AOP exibition in London.
John is presently based in the Netherlands.