Angela is a New Zealand photographer/mother, who enjoys indulging in genealogical research. Angela became interested in Genealogical research in 2000, after the death of her maternal uncle who had assisted some cousins in researching the Jamaican branch of the Family tree. Her mother returned from the funeral with photocopies of some of the genealogical research done, and Angela became intrigued. Within a couple of months she was well and truely “bitten by the Genealogy bug”. She became interested in Genealogical and Anthropological DNA research in 2003 whilst living in Denmark for two years.
Her genealogical research focuses primarily on the ancestory of her maternal Grandmother, Edith Inkster. Edith Inkster was the second daughter of James Inkster and Jessie Bradley Rollo. Jessie Bradley Rollo was from Perth, Scotland, and James Inkster was from Eshaness, Northmavine, Zetland (Shetland). During the two years she was living in Denmark, she visited both Perth and Eshaness.
Angela hasn’t always been a photographer/educator – until the end of 1999 she was actively involved in scientific research. She worked for 5 years at Manaaki Whenua (Landcare Research) as a Botany/Ecology researcher. In this position she interacted closely with Scientists involved in Botanical/Ecosystems research, Entomological research and the Taxonomy of New Zealand Flora and Fauna. Her employment with Manaaki Whenua ceased for health reasons.
Before her employment at Manaaki Whenua, she completed a masters degree at the University of Canterbury. Officially this degree was in Botany, but in actuality her study encompassed both Botany and Zoology. During her undergraduate degree she completed both Botany and Zoology papers, focusing primarily on Ecology, Animal Behaviour, Evolution, and Taxonomy. When she began her university studies her original intention was to do a double major in Zoology and Psychology, specializing in Animal Behaviour, – but somehow ended up specializing in Evolutionary Ecology. This switch in major was primarily* due to the inspiring teaching of the Ecologists, Taxonomists and Evolutionary biologists in the Botany department.
*(another reason was because she didn’t think entertaining Takahe chicks with puppets, or scaring Black stilts with stuffed cats was intellectual enough for a Masters thesis,… she also thought that the Animal behaviour lecturers were barking mad…especially the one who liked to keep road-kill Pukeko in his freezer,.. it sure made life “interesting” for his wife)
In late 1999, Angela began retraining in Psychology, with the intent of gaining a Phd and specialising in Cognitive Psychology and Neuroscience. As part of this training she did a Graduate course in Behavioural Pharmacology and Neuroscience, which involved a practical research project in elucidating the role of the Nucleus Accumbens in the fear response, and a research project examining the effects of caffeine on rat exploratory behaviour. During this time she became well aquainted with the ethical issues involved with animal and human research. She concluded that whilst she could see the neccessity of doing animal research to progress Neuroscience, she did not feel comfortable with the idea of undertaking a personal career based on this type of research. Even though she excelled in Cognitive Psychology and Neuroscience, – she lacked “passion” for it. She realised that her desire to do a Phd in Psychology, might have been bourne out of her past desire to gain a Phd in Evolutionary Ecology (rather than in Psychology itself). She decided to take time off study from Psychology while she decided what she really wanted to do, and began retraining in Photography instead. As part of her Photography training she combined genealogy with photography and created a series of images, a sequence of which followed her maternal line ancestors. She chose to concentrate on this lineage because she knew from her past biological studies that this was the lineage that followed mtDNA inheritance. It was inevitable that she would then, later, have her mtDNA tested.
Angela also believes that people who write personal biographies in the third person are a wee bit odd (and possibly barking mad).