Testing ground
05 August, 2022
Rough edits, from a short walk a few blocks away from here. Not good enough, but I’m starting to see where I want to go with this. So I’ll be taking more walks these coming weeks. Same neighourhood, same time.
I rarely allow myself to excercise or experiment, to develop a feeling for a particular subject, idea, or approach. So close to home, a place to return to as often as needed, I have no excuse not to.

As it goes
02 August, 2022
Inspiration, be it from novels, photographs, traveling, people or work, doesn’t lead to a creative or artistic outburst, it doesn’t make you create better work, or work at all. Nor does it enable you to step out of your trusted framework. Inspiration, the way I see it, is nothing more than the will to live.

On nature - and the Dutch
09 July, 2022

Today's newspaper reported on a study into the perception of nature in the Netherlands – in response to the nitrogen crisis – how important we feel nature is, what we actually consider as ‘nature’ and what we are willing to sacrifice for its preservation. For most people, nature is the park they walk in, the plants in their backyard and a roadside full of flowers. Ecologists think of biodiversity and endangered and rare species. The younger generation tends to equal nature with climate (change), and farmers think of cornfields and meadows. For me the Netherlands is a country without nature. We have recreational areas, but hardly any nature. No other European country has such a low percentage of untouched nature and forests. Which brings me to another group that this study identifies: people who understand nature as wilderness, winding streams and mountain peaks. “This romantic and idyllic representation of nature is mainly found among highly educated city dwellers, who are in fact furthest removed from nature.”
I realize that I belong to that last group, as embarrassing as that may be. I never grew up with nature. I pay little attention to insects, animals, plants, fungi, etc. I enjoy having a garden (well, balcony) and surrounding myself with greenery, but I’m not a fan of gardening, and am not particularly interested in how things grow and flourish. Nature to me means natural landscapes. I love the space, the vastness, the outdoors, being away from people, from being noticed, the silence, atmosphere, views, the physical efforts needed to access a landscape. Eyes on the horizon, hardly on the ground. I never really considered that ‘romantic’, probably because the landscapes I visit (and photograph) are not necessarily romantic in the traditional sense of the word, and the photos are not glorifying their beauty. But I’m willing to accept that my own relationship to landscape definitely is romantic, in a sort of Rousseau-ish, nineteenth century kind of way. Relating this to being, in fact, profoundly detached from nature isn’t much of a stretch.
Two overproduced photographs of the Perito Moreno glacier in Argentina, 2012/2022

04 July, 2022

Eco-Cathedral, Mildam. Initiated by landscape architect Louis Le Roy in the 1970s. See also 
I try not to go on and on about unforgiving greens and brutal sunlight, but this was another not so gentle reminder of how light really is everything and how you depend on it as a photographer. The most interesting structures of the eco-cathedral are situated in the darkest part of the woods. A dense but fiercely green lit canopy over a dark landscape, contaminating everything with a greenish hue. I think I know most of the tricks by now to make greens tolerable, but I felt rather helpless, no matter what editing tools I brought into action. I took these two pictures in a somewhat more open, lighter space, with a greater diversity of greens (as in vegetation, but also colour), bushes and plants more than trees. They still needed some tweaking, but I’m not unhappy with how that turned out. 

04 June, 2022

Some colour experiments on outtakes from Fuerteventura and La Gomera. I usually do not go beyond colour ‘correction’, and I felt I went way overboard with the colour grading circles. But after a while, these landscapes start to fit into some kind of reality just as easily.