3Develop image blog Blog

A new concrete bridge in a landscape with creeks and fields of wild flowers in the Noordwaard region in Biesbosch national park on a summer day

Two Room for the River Projects in the Netherlands

The Room for the River program came into being after the Betuwe region and a number of other places in the Netherlands were almost flooded in the mid-1990s. The central idea was to prevent future flooding, not by the usual dyke reinforcements, but by digging new river channels and redesigning the floodplains. Also nature and recreation were supposed to be given new opportunities in these developments. Have those good intentions been implemented? To check that out, I visited two Room for the River projects this summer: Noordwaard near Werkendam and IJsseldelta near Kampen. Noordwaard One could consider Noordwaard as an...

Close-up of a bee hovering near a purple phacelia flower on a balcony in Rotterdam, Holland

Bee Bistro in Downtown Rotterdam

These are hard times for the bees. Whatever the reasons are, it’s a fact that their numbers are decreasing; some species are threatened with extinction or are already extinct. And that’s not only sad for the bees, it has the potential to turn out pretty sad for ourselves too, since many crops need bees for pollination. Hotels Fortunately, in recent times bees can count on a lot of support. Bee hotels are popping up everywhere: structures with a lot of wood, reeds and other natural materials in which the little creatures can make their homes. Wildflowers This year, Dutch nature...

Digital Reflections of Rotterdam

I often see them in photo groups on Facebook: photos of Erasmus Bridge, or other iconic buildings located near the river, reflecting in the mirror-like water surface of the river Nieuwe Maas. Waves But the Maas is never smooth like a mirror. Rotterdam is the location where the water of the river meets the flow of the tides from the Northsea. As a result, even in completely windless weather there are always big and little waves. In reality, the Maas therefore is hardly more reflective than, say, the turf in stadium De Kuip or the new pavement on Coolsingel boulevard....

A compact cube-shaped house with a glass and wood facade, located on a high rooftop with a fictional Rotterdam skyline in the background

A Tiny House With a View: Blok’s Block

During the Rotterdam Rooftop Days, in the beginning of June, the Codrico grain silo at Katendrecht once against caught my eye. This national heritage may be the most beautiful industrial building in Rotterdam. At its rooftop there is a large cube made of concrete and glass. If the silo complex ever loses its current function, I’d love to make plans for its redevelopment. In the cube one could make a beautiful top end apartment . A very large apartment by the way, since I estimate the cube to be around twelve meters long, wide and high. Four floors would fit...

Top view of the model of new construction projects in downtown Rotterdam, in the hall of the Coolsingel Post Office

Cardboard and Styrofoam in the Old Post Office

The old main post office on Coolsingel avenue: it’s a place I visited quite often when I had just moved to Rotterdam. In those days you sometimes needed a stamp to send a letter or postcard. The waiting time in front of the counter was made pleasant by the beautiful space you were in: a large hall with the parabolic concrete arches, skylights and relief tiles. Redevelopment The post office closed its doors in 2007 and since then the hall hasn’t been accessible except in rare occasions. The building, a national monument, was in decay for over a decade but...

The Drowned Earth: a world map as it looks after the ice sheets of Greenland and Antarctica have melted, around 4000 AD

The Drowned Earth: 4000 AD, After The Thaw

What would the world map look like if all the polar ice would melt? And how long does it take to get there? These are interesting questions now that climate change is – finally – on the political agenda. And as a cartographer, I could not resist the temptation to visualize the worst case scenario. Gravity When the Greenland ice sheet melts, the sea level rises 7 meters, when the ice melts in Antarctica it causes a rise of 58 meters. So together that makes 65 meters. But that is an average. Because something else plays a role: gravity. Such...

The Mevlana mosque in Rotterdam in springtime with the Schie river in the foreground

Rotterdam as seen from a minaret

I have been to many high places in recent years to take pictures of Rotterdam. But on Easter Sunday, together with a few fellow photographers, I had the opportunity to capture the city from a very unusual point of view: a minaret of the Mevlana mosque. The photo shoot was organized by Ramazan Aydogan from Rotta Historica, who previously brought us to the roofs of the Delftse Poort building and the Erasmushuis. Ottoman The Mevlana mosque was completed on its location near the river Delfshavense Schie in Rotterdam West in 2001. The design is by the Schiedam architect Bert Toorman....

The digital scrapwood map of Europe, made of 54 different pieces of virtually recycled wood

A map of Europa made of scrapwood

Well in time for the European elections, it’s finished: the map of Europe in digital scrap wood. The third in a series; previously I made a scrap wood map of the Netherlands and the world. 54 countries Making this map was a bit more difficult than the previous two. Instead of 12 provinces or seven continents, we are dealing with 54 different countries big and small here. And for each of them I have searched for a separate piece of wood. Virtual wood, by the way, let there be no misunderstanding about it. Geopolitics When making a map of Europe,...

Westersingel canal in Rotterdam in the blue hour before sunset with a very thin layer of snow on the grassy banks

The Lousy Winter of ’18/’19

Now that the magnolias are in bloom, it’s about time for my traditional photographic review of last winter. And what a lousy winter it was … One snowflake on a scale of one to five! I know, weather and climate are not quite the same and you cannot automatically blame global warming for every mild winter day. But still it makes you wonder if snow photography has a future. However, the winter of 2018/2019 also had a few photogenic moments. But one had to act quickly. Christmas The first snow fell on the early morning of December 16. It was...

Two different Manfrotto mini tripods on a lawn with daisies

The Manfrotto Brothers on tour

Three years ago I bought a mini tripod for about twenty euros: the Manfrotto Pixi. A very useful investment, because I have since then used this tripod thousands of times. In the blue hours, when taking HDR photos and sometimes in broad daylight, because even then it often improves the sharpness of the photos. Due to its compactness, such a small tripod is extremely stable. In fact, there could only be one reason to use a larger tripod, and that is if you want a higher position than a few inches above ground level. But even then there are often...