Category: Rotterdam

Rotterdam, also known affectionately as Rotjeknor or Roffa, plays a big role in my work. And not just because the 3Develop-offices are located there. The city simply asks for it. With such a fascinating past, dynamic present and an undoubtably interesting future.

The city does well on international lists. Recommended by Lonely Planet, The Rough Guide and the New York Times. Rotterdam, Holland’s only real metropolis, the largest port in Europe, is hip, cool, dynamic and photogenic. And yet still allows room for plans that make the city even more beautiful.

Downtown rotterdam between central station and the river and between Claes de Vrieselaan and Mariniersweg; fragment of a map of Rotterdam with all city blocks as glass in 15 different colors

The Glass Map of Rotterdam: a plan in fifteen colors

Wow! That must have been a hell of a job … Cutting all those pieces of colored glass, exactly the right size and shape. And then carefully arranging them on a steel plate to create a colorful map of Rotterdam. Digital glass No, fortunately these days we have software to simulate things like that digitally. This glass map of Rotterdam was made using an AutoCAD file of the city’s building blocks. In 3ds Max, I added some irregularity to make it look not too computerized. Then I, totally randomly, assigned to each block one of fifteen different colors of glass....

Reuzenrad The View, een tijdelijke attractie op de Binnenrotte naast de Markthal in het centrum van Rotterdam, gezien vanaf de brug over de Steigergracht.

The Rotterdam Ferris Wheel

For the second year in a row, Rotterdam has a Ferris wheel, for a few weeks. With an English name: The View. Like last spring the wheel is on Binnenrotte square, almost touching the famous Markthal (or should I say Market Hall?). Motion When I went to take a look on one of the first nights the wheel was operational, Binnenrotte was teeming with photographers. For a photographer Ferris wheels are beautiful objects to portray. Especially during the blue hour after sunset, when the shutter speeds are getting longer. The movement of the rotating wheel creates beautiful abstract effects. An...

Christmas card of the author: a paintified photograph of the maritime outdoor museum at Leuvehaven in Rotterdam, covered with snow

Winter in Rotterdam: a white Christmas animation

Anecdotal evidence is no evidence at all. It’s hard to say whether or not the boring winters of the last few years are an effect of global warming. For which, by the way, there is enough real evidence; that’s what scientists (or at least 99.9% of them) agree on. Anyway, the last few winters were exceptionally mild. Especially here in the southwest of the Netherlands. On television I see people skating on natural ice in the northern province of Friesland or a beautiful blanket of snow in the eastern region of the Achterhoek. But the last time Rotterdam colored white...

Photo made at the Old Harbour in Rotterdam on a misty day, with the White house and the boats in the harbour in sharp vision but William Bridge as a vague contour.

Rotterdam in the fog

Fog is a natural phenomenon that can occur in any season, but in autumn it’s more likely to show its face. That seems to be related to relatively large temperature differences between day and night, although Wikipedia reports that the forming of fog depends on many factors. The presence of open water certainly also plays a role. Like all special weather phenomena mist provides opportunities for photographers. And at the same time it creates challenges: if you are surrounded by mist, the pictures tend to be rather featureless and gray. It is better to choose position on the edge of...

Selection of photographs with the theme of Rotterdam on the edges of the night

Rotterdam: the Edges of the Night – new expo in the Lijnbaan gallery

Since this week there’s a new exhbition of photographs from my Rotterdam collection in my Lijnbaan gallery. This didn’t happen at the expense of the permanent collection, which is still there like it has been in the last two years on the front facade of 3Develop’s premises in one of the residential building in the Lijnbaan national heritage area. Blue Hours Unlike the permanent collection, which gives an comprehensive overview of my work, I have picked a more defined theme this time: Rotterdam on the Edges of the Night. Photos taken in the so-called blue hour before sunrise and after...

Corten steel wall under van der Louw bridge in Rotterdam with root shaped openings shaping the word ROTTE-DAM

The Wijnhaven effect

Why is it easier for our eyes to recognize certain patterns when we see those patterns on a photograph instead of seeing them in real life? Three examples and an attempt to explain the phenomenon. The extended Willems Bridge, it was a weird name for the bridge across Wijnhaven. Especially after the Willems Bridge itself was relocated two hundred meters further upstream, only connected to the extended portion by a strangely twisting road. A good reason to rename it Andre van der Louw Bridge, after the man with the moustache and the pipe who from 1974 to 1981 was mayor...

The Barge at Night, artist impression of the new Feyenoord stadium on the banks of the river Nieuwe Maas in Rotterdam

The Barge: a New Stadium for Feyenoord

For a few years now, there have been discussions about a new stadium for Feyenoord, replacing the legendary football temple and municipal monument, De Kuip. Allthough I am not as frequent a visitor of the stadium as some of my fellow townspeople, I also have my memories of De Kuip. For example, of a competition match of Feyenoord against Vitesse: 2-1. Pierre van Hooijdonk was still playing then, so it must have been a while ago. Much longer ago I was at the best concert of the  (twentieth) century by Eric Clapton. With Elton John as a disastrous support act and the then virtually unknown Bonnie Raytt doing...

Reflection of the New Luxor Theatre in the water of Rijnhaven in Rotterdam

Painting Waves: the Coincidental Artist

If you’re looking at my photographic work, it’s obvious that reflections are an important theme: in mirrors, in water, in glass, in metal, on ice, on wet asphalt. I even have a board devoted to the subject in Pinterest. Today I want to talk about a special kind of reflection. Under the right conditions, reflections in an undulating surface start resembling oilpaintings. With water as a canvas and coincidence as an artist. Impressionistic scenes that you only need to capture with a camera. The right circumstances So what exactly are these right conditions? To begin with: it has to be...

Image made in Google Earth of the layer of 3d buildings in downtown Rotterdam, showing the city hall, the former post office, Beurs wtc and the new Timmerhuis

Four Features of Google Earth

For many years, Google Earth has been my favorite product by the company from California. Okay, the search engine is also very useful. But it remains priceless to be able to travel in a matter of seconds from outer space to any place on Earth. Or on the Moon or Mars. An unconvenient side effect however is that programs like Google Earth tend to fall victim to rapidly aging. It’s much more fun when the used satellite and aerial imagery, and the layer with the 3D buildings, are current. And lately Google didn’t really seem to do its best to...

Interior photo of the bridge keepers cabin of the Orange Bridge in Schiedam, during the Dudok exhibition with photos and drawings of Dudok's Rotterdam Bijenkorf

Dudok exhibition in Schiedam: the Bijenkorf triptych and more…

During the weekend of 2 and 3 July I organized an exhibition, together with Jan Sluijter, in the cutest (and probably the smallest) art gallery of Schiedam: the bridge keepers cabin of the Orange Bridge across the New Harbour. The photo exhibition was dedicated to the architecture of Willem Marinus Dudok. We had a good occasion for that: two hundred meters from the venue is one of Dudok’s creations: the HAV Bank, currently in use as a residential building. The exhibition was, admittedly, mostly focussed on one building: the old Rotterdam Bijenkorf. We had a lot of material about that...