For the third in our series of interviews with our translators, we are delighted to feature top Dutch translator, Otto van Tuyl. We have known Otto for many years and very much value his professional approach as well as his language skills. Otto is a long-standing member of the Institute of Translation and Interpreting, and his subject specialisms include finance and automotive translations.
Below are Otto's answers to our questions.
1. What attracted you to working with languages?
I have always taken an interest in the ‘peculiarities’ of languages and in how people express themselves in their language. As a child I had a book with proverbs and sayings in 4 languages. The attraction was always there, helped by the fact that I was raised in a home where language, history and music were considered important.
2. What do you enjoy mostly about being a translator?
As a translator I always enjoy learning new things through the projects that I translate. Over the years, this has given me a lot of general knowledge.
3. What is your biggest challenge at the moment in translation?
During the world economic crisis which started in 2008 a lot of people have turned to freelance translation as a profession. As a result the market has become flooded with cheap (but often low quality) translators. This in turn has accelerated an already developing trend whereby certain types of outsourcers who care less about quality and more about margins have started to offer jobs to the lowest bidders, often through web portals. I have found that many customers now mainly tend to come to experienced professionals with jobs that are more difficult and therefore take longer to complete.
4. Where in the world would you love to travel to?
I would like to travel to and experience life in Israel because it is a nation like no other, the ‘navel of the world’, located on a crossroads of cultures and religions and the only democracy in the Middle East. It is totally unique . I also like the sound of modern Hebrew (Ivrit) very much and I would like to learn it if I only could find the time.
Thank you, Otto!