Walking from Leiden to Hazerswoude: The world is flat

This weekend I walked with friends from Leiden to Hazerswoude. Leiden is a beautiful old town, home to the oldest university in the Netherlands and birthplace of Rembrandt. Hazerswoude is a small village in the ‘green heart’ of the Netherlands. The green heart is an area of 2.500 square km, situated between four largest cities of the Netherlands: The Hague, Amsterdam, Utrecht and Rotterdam.

Growing up in different places in this green heart, the hypothesis that the world was flat seemed to make sense. The green heart is one of the flattest pieces of the earth I have ever seen, and, after seeing some of my pictures, I am sure you will agree.

As a side note: the weather provided a great opportunity to test the weather sealing capabilities of my Lumix G81 camera and Panasonic 12-60 mm 3.5-5.6 lens. Pretty good actually…


Lumix G81 camera | Panasonic 12-60 mm 3.5-5.6 lens


Industrial Photography in France

Although I prefer taking pictures of people instead of objects, I have a soft spot for black & white pictures of industrial objects. Hence I just had to stop when I drove through France and saw this old iron bridge with the marshalling yard part of Gare Niederhausbergen.


LumixGX80 camera | Olympus 17mm 1.8 lens

Pictures taken with the Dynamic Monochrome setting on the Lumix GX80. Post processed in Lightroom.


Lucerne with my Olympus 9-18 lens (mainly…)

Lucerne is one of the most beautiful Swiss cities I know. The only problem –it is overexposed. The famous Kapellbrücke must have been photographed more than a hundred million times, the slightly less famous Watertower bridge and the Jesuit church probably millions of times.

The light conditions were sub-optimal due to the time of year and timing of my visit (grey skies). However, fortunately, I had my Olympus 9-18 mm f/4.0-5.6 wide angle lens with me during the shoot, and could use Adobe Lightroom for postprocessing.

I love the Olympus 9-18 lens when I travel to cities. 9 mm enables me to capture almost everything that is interesting from an architecture point of view, 18 mm is the bare minimum for a portrait. I remember one trip to London where I almost never took this lens off the body, despite the fact that I have multiple other lenses at my disposal. Obviously, I had my Lumix 20 mm f/1.7 lens with me as well. You know, the lens I have a love – hate (colours, depth of field, sharpness versus slooooooow and awful aesthetics) relationship with. With this lens I took the first two pictures of the series below.

During the shoot I became slightly worried about the fact that the autofocus of my GX80 camera occasionally stopped working, and only started again if I took the lens off the body, and put it back again… It happened only a couple of times when I switched lenses, and only after I successfully used the lens after taking a couple of shots. I would hate to have this camera bring in for repairs. I love using it for street photography and already hear a ‘… we could not recreate the issue’ from Panasonic.

Anyway, I hope my pictures of the beautiful city of Lucerne add some value to all the pictures that are already out there.

Let me know!


LumixGX80 camera | Lumix 20mm 1.7 lens | Olympus 9-18mm F/4.0-5.6


The Reformed Church In Grindelwald

Grindelwald is small town in the Swiss Alps, surrounded by a number of famous mountains: the Wetterhorn, the Mönch, the Jungfrau, and of course the most (in)famous one of all: the Eiger.

In the village a beautiful small idyllic church is located. A number of graves in the church yard behind the church are from mountaineers who died during climbing expeditions.

We also visited the church on Sunday to attend a baptism service led by Pfarrer Klaus-Dieter Hägele. Not only did he preach about the cornerstone of our lives (Isaiah 28:16), he also gave a demonstration by stapling one stone on top of another. Andreas Menzi accompanied the service on organ and piano. One of the pieces he played is an old time favorite of mine from the great American songbook: ‘Love is here to stay’ by George & Ira Gershwin.


Lumix G80 | Olympus 9-18mm F/4.0-5.6 | Lumix 12-60 mm F/3.5-5.6


‘Talking about a revolution’ (Sudan)

‘Talking about a revolution’ from Tracy Chapman is one of my favorite songs. When I am in the Netherlands I always stay near The  Malieveld in The Hague, a popular spot for demonstrations. Whenever I witness a demonstration there, I always have to think about this song.

This afternoon there was a demonstration against the violation of human rights in Sudan. I had a friendly chat with some of the demonstrators and did an improv photo shoot with some of them.



Equipment: Panasonic Lumix G7 | Panasonic 14-42 3.5-5.6


Vernissage and Book launch at Bildhalle Zurich!

March 28, 2019, I had the pleasure of attending a Vernissage at my favorite photo gallery in Zurich: Bildhalle. The occasion was the opening of an exhibition of the work of Willy Spiller and Fred Mayer and Willy Spiller. At the same occasion a book was launched with work from Willy Spiller, published by the Bildhalle. The book was launched with a great speech from literary critic Stefan Zweifel.

The exhibition will run until My 11, 2019. The address is BILDHALLE, Stauffacherquai 56, 8004 Zürich, +41 44 552 09 18. Highly recommended!


Big Heads Martin Schoeller Nederlands Fotomuseum Rotterdam

I really enjoyed visiting the exposition Big Heads by German photographer Martin Schoeller in the Fotomuseum earlier this year. ‘Big Heads’ is a series of close-up portraits taken of (mostly) celebrities, taken with a wide angle lens from a short distance with a large format camera and a large aperture. The pictures only show the face of the subjects – even their necks are not visible.

Martin Schoeller explains this unusual perspective from the fact that, when he was an unknown photographer, he did not get much time and possibilities to influence the location or the clothing of his subjects. Cleverly, he decided to turn this weakness in a strength. Instead, the had to work fast and accept the location and clothing as a given.

Martin Schoeller explains the choice of celebrities as subjects due to this upbringing in post-war Germany where heroes and worshipping them, was not done due to the second world war. For this reason, he was surprised by the celebrity culture in the USA when he emigrated to this country.

Prior to establishing himself as an independent photographer, he worked as an assistant for Annie Leibovitch. He credits his technique to Bernd and Hilla Becher, who became famous for their work of identical industrial installations.

The Nederlands Fotomuseum Rotterdam is located in Katendrecht, in the neighborhood of Hotel New York. the former terminal building of the HAL (Holland America Line). Here a number of emigrants left Europe for the US.

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All pictures were taken with a Sony Cyber-shot DSC RX100 (Mark I)


 

Walking from Amersfoort to Woudenberg

Another series of pictures I took during a walk in Holland. This time from Amersfoort to Woudenberg. I discovered my Olympus OMD EM10 (Mark I) in combination with my 17mm 1.8 Zuiko lens is becoming my favorite set-up for these occasions. Given the speed of my companions during these walks, I do not have time to switch lenses anyway…

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The Hague Central Station

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Amersfoort

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Amersfoort – ‘De Bollenburgh’ – Residence of Johan van Oldenbarnevelt, who was born in this city and executed as a result of a conflict with Maurits van Oranje 

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‘Forever Autumn’ – One of the favorite songs of my youth

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Estate Den Treek

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Area 51?

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Part of the Dutch Defense Line – ‘De Grebbelinie’. Another highlight in the Dutch military history.


All pictures taken with an Olympus OM-D E-M10 (Mark I) camera in combination with a Zuiko 17 mm 1.8 lens. Recorded in Raw; post-processed in Adobe Lightroom.


Demonstration for an Independent Scotland in the Hague

Yesterday morning I woke up with to the sound of bagpipes. I quickly took my camera and started looking for the source of the noise, … I mean music.

When I got to the corner of the Malieveld in the Hague, I met a number of incredibly nice people who were planning to hold a demonstration that day for an independent Scotland. Unfortunately I could not march with them, but I had the opportunity to take a couple of nice pictures. I hope they had a great day and wish them every success in pursuing their course!

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Pictures taken with Olympus OMD EM10 camera (Mark I) and Zuiko 14-42 3.5-5.6 mm lens, Recorded in RAW, post-processed with Adobe Lightroom.


 

Concert Son Mieux The Hague

Since 1989 the city of the Hague has a tradition to organize rock concerts on different stages in the city center on the night before Kings’s day (April 27). This year I took the opportunity to attend a concert of the Dutch band ‘Son Mieux’. I must admit I never heard about them, but it turned out to be a great gig. Their music is highly original, and I keep playing their songs Feels. and Easy on Spotify.

Unfortunately ,I was not the only one who liked their music: due to the massive crowd and the number of people in front of the stage, I could only take pictures from a single angle. This angle made it difficult to take good pictures from other band members than the singer and the base player.

However, I hope to have an opportunity to see (and hear!) them again sometime in the near future, and to be able to take more varied pictures then.

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Pictures taken with Olympus OMD EM10 camera (Mark I) and Zuiko 14-42 3.5-5.6 mm lens, Recorded in RAW, post-processed with Adobe Lightroom.


 

A visit to Artis, the Amsterdam Zoo

Recently I visited the Zoo in Amsterdam. I always have my camera with me, but find it difficult to take original pictures in the Zoo. This time I decided to use the Art Filters on my Olympus OMD-EM10 for some of my shots.

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Pictures taken with Olympus OMD EM10 camera (Mark I) and Zuiko 14-42 3.5-5.6 mm lens, Recorded in JPEG, post-processed with Adobe Lightroom.


 

Which Type of Jaguar is this?

I am not crazy about cars – but I love industrial design and am fond of ‘Best Of British’. Hence I immediately grabbed my gear when I saw this beautiful jaguar parked a couple of 100 yards from my house. I had a very nice chat with the owner. Unfortunately I did not ask him which model it was, because I could not find it on the Internet afterwards. Please leave a comment if you do!

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Pictures taken with a Nikon D750 camera and a Tamron 28-75 mm 2.8 lens. Recorded in Raw, post-processed with Adobe Lightroom.