3Develop image blog Blog

Artist impression of the "Belgian" planet Nervia, portrayed as a gas giant in the black, yellow and red of the national flag, with some moons, a ring and the star Neburonia

The Chronicles of Nervia

A few weeks ago I made an artist impression of the “Dutch” planet Nachtwacht as a red, white and blue, Jupiter-like gas giant. But such a planetary image in the national colors can of course be made for our southern neighbors as well. After all, also Belgium has recently acquired a piece of real estate in the Milky Way galaxy, as part of the NameExoWorlds project of the International Astronomical Union. Gaul The name the Belgians have given to “their” planet sounds a lot more euphonious than the guttural Dutch Nachtwacht: Nervia. Well, of course the name had to be...

Silver grey Porsche Macan Turbo parked at Maasvlakte near Rotterdam with the sea and a spectacular cloudy sky in the background

Porsche photography for beginners

To be honest, I usually don’t care much about cars. Okay, sometimes they are useful to get to a place where there is no public transport or to transport something too big for a bicycle. But I don’t have the required papers to drive them and I can hardly see the difference between a Mercedes and an Opel. However, I hear everyone say it is good to occasionally step out of your comfort zone. So when Robin Groenendijk of 64 Porsche Lifestyleblog asked me if I wanted to take photos for an article, I didn’t have to hesitate long. And...

Australia reforested, a detail of the Forest World Map, made of 15.000 digital trees, surrounded by virtual grassy meadows, with also New Zealand and a part of Indonesia

A Virtual Forest and One Trillion Real Trees

The World Map of Trees, shown below, is made of more than 15,000 trees that together form the continents of our planet, while the surrounding grassy meadows represent the oceans. A piece of land art on an area of approximately 200 hectares, accessed by roads and paths (the equator and some meridians) and with ditches representing tropics and polar circles. All this of course entirely digital and virtual, because unfortunately I have no backyard of this size. Apart from the fact that this forest map is a nice addition to my collection of world maps (see, for example, the stained...

The shining pot of the Boymans museum collection building under construction in Museum Park in Rotterdam during the blue hour on a morning the the winter of 2020

January Mornings: the 2020 Edition

In a previous post I explained why early January is such a good time to go out taking photographs at daybreak. There’s no need to set the alarm inhumanely early because the latest (in the sense of the least early) sunrise is around New Year’s Day. And in this time of year sunrise coincides more or less with the morning rush hour, making it easy to adorn the photos with light trails and other special effects. Also this year I went out a few times early in the morning for a photo expedition through Rotterdam in the blue hour. Unfortunately...

Artist impression of the planet Nachtwacht (Night Watch), a red, white and blue gas giant, with two of ots moons as well as parent star Sterrennacht (Starry Night)

Holland in the Sky: Night Watch and Starry Night

Since December 17, the Netherlands has two new far outposts: the planet Night Watch and the star Starry Night. The IAU, the International Astronomical Union, asked us to come up with a name for those two celestial bodies, which were previously known under the somewhat boring character combinations HAT-P-6 and HAT-P-6b. The inhabitants of the 111 other countries affiliated with the IAU were also assigned a cosmic duo, as part of the NameExoWorlds campaign. Rembrandt and Van Gogh Out of 6,000 suggestions submitted by the public, the national jury chose a shortlist of five name twins, of which Nijntje (Miffy)...

Future vision for the Rotterdam metro network, with two new lines, visualized as an old school London Underground map

The Rotterdam Metro in Past, Present and Future

On February 9, 1968, the first section of the Rotterdam metro was opened: six kilometers, six stations, from Central Station to Zuidplein. I was there together with my father, but all I remember is that I saw a lot of people’s legs that day. I was only five and much shorter than I am today. A few years later, that first line was extended to my hometown of Hoogvliet. This resulted in a spectacular reduction of the travel time to Rotterdam. Instead of a one hour bus ride, the metro took us to “the city” in half an hour. Now,...

Details of a ship hull with peeling paint, rust stains and stripes and embossed numbers of the draught mark

Countdown: the ten best photos of 2019

Here we are again: the top 10 of the best photos of the year 2019. Or well, let me put that in perspective: these are the ten best photos I took this year, in my own humble opinion. Also, it’s a kind of snapshot; tomorrow I may think very differently. But anyway, at least they are ten special pictures. The long list Like in previous years, I had a huge collection to choose from. I took around five thousand photos in 2019, from which I compiled a long list with almost two hundred nominees. 10 – Cloudburst in Roermond On...

Artist impression of the ESA probe Huygens, landing on Titan, largest moon of the planet Saturn, in january 2005

Space Quotes

This collection of quotes, wisecracks and oneliners was originally tweeted from the, nowadays pretty dormant, Modified MarsTwitteraccount. I felt they deserved a more permanent location; after all, colonizing the Galaxy is a long term project. Some of these quotes are funny, others are dead serious; occasionally they’re both. They all are, sometimes very obvious, in other cases rather remotely, linked to themes like Mars, spaceflight, astronomy or the universe in general. And since I call this an image blog, I illustrate this page with some space art I’ve produced over the years. “We are all in the gutter, but some of...

Branches and red leaves of a sweet gum tree (liquidambar styraciflua) in the Park in Rotterdam, The Netherlands

Autumn in Rotterdam: a Tree Tour

I hardly have to tell the reader why it’s good to have trees in the city. They purify the air, they absord CO2, they make it slightly less hot in the summertime and they retain water after heavy rain showers. And of course they also make things more beautiful. This decorative function is most obvious in two periods: spring and autumn. Trees that in previous months were fairly inconspicuously bare or green, suddenly burst out into a feast of color. Now that the meteorological (and photographic) fall is over, this blogpost aims to give a small, totally incomplete, tour of...

Rusty old installations in a pond, in the Waterloopbos (Hydraulic Forest) in the Dutch North East Polder on a rainy day in autumn

The Hydraulic Forest in Autumn

The Waterloopbos (let’s translate that with Hydraulic Forest) in the Dutch North East Polder has a post-apocalyptic quality. It is as if a nuclear disaster occurred here fifty years ago. Everywhere you see crumbling wall, sluices, canals and strange installations, partly overgrown by the forest. Hydraulic engineering The reality is, fortunately, somewhat less dramatic. From 1952 to 1995 this area was in use by the national Hydraulic Laboratory. The numerous watercourses and ponds with their wondrous artifacts are the remains of hydraulic scale models. The area is nowadays a national monument and open to the public. November This summer I...