23 January 2012 3:53 AM, PST | The Guardian - TV News | See recent The Guardian - TV News news »

Documentary maker Heather Leach turned the camera on herself and her family when she was diagnosed with thyroid cancer. She explains why

Until three years ago, I was a cheeky flame-haired documentary director based in London and living life to the full. Then at the age of 30, I was diagnosed with a serious thyroid condition and then on top of that, thyroid cancer. The diagnosis forced me to reconsider the purpose of life, who I wanted in it and what I wanted to do. And the first thing I did was pick up my camera.

When I was first told I had cancer I felt totally isolated and disconnected; that I couldn't share all my thoughts as my nearest and dearest wouldn't understand. Having made character-driven films for so many years it felt like the most natural thing to turn the camera on myself. It was a way to maintain »

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