For various reasons, I haven’t found time to post something fresh lately. It’s not that I ran out of ideas, or topics I care about. But some of those ideas need a bit more time to mature. Some need me to spend some time actually making photos. Others need me to straighten my thoughts a bit more.
In the parts of the Netherlands where I live, this weekend is all about celebrating carnival. I used to celebrate this as well (not this year though). While I could write a lot on this feast, I’m not going to do that.
What I am going to bring up, is the small and sweet companion I brought with me the last times I went to celebrate it: the Werra.
It’s time of the winter olympics, and I’m enjoying a lot of that massively. Apart from the action, the Olympics always have their fair share of interesting stories. Getting to the top makes for fascinating stories often enough. Staying there: a display of immense focus and drive. And as many Olympic sports aren’t very commercial, or even paid at all, that relentless drive to excel is plain awesome.
In some way, most have this drive to be the best. But unlike sports, who or what is the best isn’t always clear-cut.
Discussing photos with photographers pretty often becomes a discussion on the technical execution of the image. The composition, how elements work together (or clash), the use of colours, things like that. More a dissection of the image than a taking the image as a whole.
There is a lot of value in that, as such an analysis gives a lot of clues to learn and grow. But to me, it also misses a vital element. The gut reaction, the emotional response you have when you see the image.
Possibly one of the most polarising food items on this planet: Marmite. It seems you have to be English to be able to like it, but it used to be widely available in mainland Europe as well. Nowadays, not as much, as far as I can see. Perhaps a Brexit side effect. In any case, some will lament its poorer availability, and others will think “good riddance”. Marmite doesn’t do mid-field, only extremes.
Celebrating a new year is to me a bit a silly and useless event. The sun goes down and comes back up every day. There is nothing special about that. The definition of things as year, january and the first of the month are just conventions. Not entirely random, but still… just conventions.
But it doesn’t hurt to look back every now and then. A bit of retrospective to help frame where to go from here.
In previous posts, I rambled about the combinations of film and developer I like: one for all-round bomb-proof performance, one for plenty light and plenty sharpness and one for plenty light and a more old-fashioned look.
The next recipe is one I use a lot less, frankly very very rare. Yet, it’s a tool I like to have in the shed.
Probably messed up some settings for comments to posts… if you ever tried commenting, sorry! Nothing made it through the overly tight settings… Hopefully it works better now!
A declaration of love for you, my baby. In between all the serious bits and pieces, you’re a fun favourite. Many will say you’re just a toy, but you and I know better. You’re original, different, funny and unashamedly yourself. You’re my Lensbaby, and yes, I do like you an awful lot.
In a way, making photos is a solitary thing – it’s you behind the camera, and the rest of the world on the other side of the lens. But that doesn’t necessarily mean it is a lonely thing.
As an aspiring photographer, there is a lot of value in meeting other photographers. Exchanging ideas, experiences, war stories and all that provides useful input to exploring yourself further.