About Mara

Mara Acoma Portrait

If you died and became a ghost, what would you do?


“They’ve said it’s cancer…”

I was at work when I heard those words, the voice coming down the phone was my mothers and I could tell she was desperately trying to keep her voice steady. My body went cold with the shock of the news and I honestly can’t remember what I said to her. The call didn’t last long, but I knew my life had just changed. I just didn’t know how much.

She was my only living family (not counting a few distant cousins) and I knew I had to support her through this final part of her journey. However, I needed someone or something to support me, so I turned to my camera and photography.

Out of all the emotions and big picture questions which swirled through my life during that time, one took root and wouldn’t leave.

“If I died and became a ghost, what would I do?”

My camera became my therapist and coping mechanism as I started creating images to explore and express the emotional whirlwind inside. The Ghost Project was born.

Eventually, she lost her fight. It was time to continue on my journey without her physical presence, but she had one last gift to give. I know one day I will be the one lying in that hospital bed just like her, and when I am, I don’t want any regrets from taking the safe route through life. I want to be able to look back with a smile and have loads of amazing stories about the things I had done to tell anyone visiting. I had always been an artist in my heart but had taken the ‘safe’ route of a steady job. I knew that needed to change. So I gave myself time to figure things out and went back to University to study for a MA in Photography, eventually graduating with a Distinction from the University of Sunderland.

I now live and work as a photographic artist in the North East of England and I will be forever in my mothers’ debt for giving me the push to follow my dreams.