2011 - Elf Fantasy Fair
Okay, plenty of people loved to see some archive stuff, so I'm going to do something creative with that!
9 years in 9 days! I'll start with 2011, and end with 2020. I'll (try and) only post pictures that I haven't posted on instagram before, and when I feel like it I'll post the image as I would have edited it now next to the edit I did back then. Might be cool to see the differences :)
In 2011 I was someone who visited all the (fantasy) fairs, both capturing all kinds of beautiful handcrafted costumes (such as this one by the amazing @linny_la_vante ) and participating myself - either just with any cool costume I could scrounge, or as part of the Inquisition of the Church of Kriegrimm entertainment group -- think Monthy Python and mix it with fantasy and you're good. Het is zondag.
Looking at the edits (I didn't look at the old before I started creating the new) I notice how my style is a lot lighter now, with more focus on details and getting eyes visible. Cool!
2012 - Soundabout!
In 2012 I was in my strobist phase. That is: bringing gelled speedlights to every situation, even if that situation totally didn't need that in the first place.. It's a phase photogs go through I guess. And I'm not even going to talk about the edit!
Still, this was one of the most fun shoots I've done! Driving with my friends of the Dutch ska band Soundabout in an electric converted VW on roads that for sure allowed a higher speed than we were able to get, coincidentally enjoying the pile of traffic we were generating, and then just going all out with flashes and lights and everything in the middle of nowhere!
2013 - The Four Horsemen
This happened in 2013. A huge group, a big project. It was a lovely day! We started at 9-ish, and prepared, and prepared. There were lots of preparations to make. Too many maybe?
Yep.. We ended up shooting this at the end of day, using the last few minutes of daylight remaining. Ouch! The results were... grainy at best. Lessons learned: many!
The result you see here did not come from a single image. That didn't fit, so this was a nontrivial composition of multiple shots.. why did it sound like a good idea to challenge myself to re-edit those old pictures again?!?? ;)
But that actually provided interesting lessons in itself! For example - looking back at the old image I can't understand I couldn't see what I see now. I remember being very proud of it, but now.. I mean, that horizon.. really? How could I not have noticed? :D
2013 - Fire!
Another one from 2013. I found this gem while going though the archives - and I can't understand why I didn't show it earlier! Better do it now!
New edit, as there wasn't an old one. Also, it's a lot of fun going through those archives! So many beautiful shoots, so many good memories!
2014 - Erthana
Erthana and I have worked together quite often in the last decade, and every shoot yielded something completely different. This shoot, that started out as a simple "let's go to the woods and do something" yielded one of the images I love most out of my entire portfolio.
I tried doing a new edit, but ended up with loving the old edit more, so that's what I am posting!
2015 - Dark Woods
I loved, and still love, walking through forests, searching and hopefully finding exactly the right bit of darkness - and then shaping available light (and/or flashes) to my will until I get that image I am looking for. And if I don't, no worries, there's photoshop!
For me this picture signifies all of the above, and will always remain a good memory!
2015 - When things go wrong..
.. they go right! Random extra one for 2015, because! For this Halloween themed shoot with @machinefairy we intended for her to pour the liquid into the cup. Obviously, that went wrong. What didn't is that she kept a straight face, and kept on pouring - trusting me to get the picture before the liquid ruined the outfit, the table and everything!
The result we got we couldn't have hoped for otherwise! Still love it!
2016 - Shiny stuff!
Around 2016 I had the opportunity to meet a whole bunch of amazing creatives, who dragged met into really trying to understand what it takes to do designer wear photography. Oof! Fashion & designer wear photography was and still is a bit of a difficult one for me, way more nontrivial than it looks. My tendency to always want to put an entire huge environment around photos isn't helping much either ;)
So many amazing people, beautiful designs and weird locations all at once though! Thanks to all I met!
I think I started my instagram account in 2017, so this shot was taken just before that, during a shoot in a bar with an oddly similar name.
2017 - Blacklight!
Working with blacklight is.. weird! It is not really there unless you happen to have an amazing bodypaint artist nearby, and when you do it can be way to bright. It is a (weak) continuous light source, making it interesting to balance correctly with (gelled) flashes. I do really love the effects you can create with it though! For sure not suitable for most of my work, but on some occassions - like this one - you can't go without!
2018 - Video
Video is only now (2021) starting to make an appearance in my workflow, but that doesn't mean I haven't been toying with it for years in bigger projects. Lighting scenes, adding smoke here and there, getting professionals jittery because my views on lighting a scene are somewhat odd compared to the norms, fun!
This shot was a BTS shot I took during recordings for the videoclip "SO HUMAN OF YOU" by Shireen - I really enjoyed crafting the mood and light for these! If you haven't seen it, go watch!
2019 - The Tinman's Heart
I can't really pass 2019 and not show this project again! It was sneakily one of the most complex collaborations to do, and I'm still quite happy with the results that came out of this!
The entire series can be seen here
So yes, 2020 happened too. It was an interesting year for sure. We've all been there: projects cancelled, inspiration gone, energy out of the window, no focus. We're not out of there either -- I hope and wish everyone the best, regardless of where they are in life.
For me 2020 also brought changes. I moved away from high pressure shoots, doing the same thing over and over again, and started thinking about what I really want to create. Where do I want to go from here?
I've started learning blender (for real this time) and have been picking up video. I've started dabbling with cosplay photography as it's an amazing source of inspiration for creative 3D projects, good way to learn stuff before I reveal my actual master plan! More on that later.
So oh yes, there's vision now, more than ever! A vision of where I want to grow to as an artist, a view on the type of imagery I eventually want to create. And all what I am making now is part of that process of slowly getting there.
This might take years more. Decades? It would be good either way, the steps to take will be fun!
This shot links to all of that. It was part of that turning point. It forced me to decide to relaunch my website - thereby letting go of that social media demon that captures us and teaches us what we should post and how we should react to eachother - I now finally have a safe space again.
It also highlighted to me how important it is just to have friends around.
Thanks to all of you for joining with me in this 9 day quest through 9 years of history. Hope you liked! Challenging you to do the same! ;)