Category: Digital art

I make pretty pictures, asked and unasked. I do work on commission, intended to explain or sell projects. And I make free work. Art for art’s sake. Work to decorate your wall. But made with the same tools and techniques, the same hardware and software, the same knowledge and skills, the same enthusiasm, the same creativity. Spherical and tubular panoramas, paintifications, virtual reliefs, fictional sculptures and more ….

Detail of a digital painting depicting the landing of European space probe Huygens on Saturn's moon Titan in 2005

Seven Digital Space Art Paintings

Space art as a genre is older than you might think. As early as 1301, a certain Giotto di Bondone from Florence made a painting depicting Halley’s comet. But the big breakthrough didn’t come until the late 1800s, when science fiction writers like Jules Verne and H.G. Wells started writing books that needed to be illustrated. Space art pioneers like Chesley Bonestell, Pat Rawlings and Don Dixon used the tools available to them in their days: paint, charcoal, chalk, pencil. Today, space artists, not to mention filmmakers, use digital tools with which nothing is impossible. Miles long spaceships on which… Read More

Detail of a piece of digital botanic art, entitled Hocus Crocus, based on a photograph of crocusses in springtime

Four Seasons of Botanic Digital Kaleidoscopic Art

Apparently I needed some extra color during the past lockdown winter. That’s the only way I can explain the explosion of colorful works of art that sprouted from my laptop during those months. I already wrote about the Icelandic impressions; also the European flag project and the Rotterdam paintifications were given a nudge in the right direction. But the greatest avalanche of new work came from the domain of Kaleidoscopia. An infinite source of botanic art, made with a “digital kaleidoscope” and based of photos of nature from all seasons. Beautiful shapes The kaleidoscope was invented in 1815 by the… Read More

Artificially aged vintage postcard of Little C, Tuschinski Park and Coolhaven harbour in Rotterdam, The Netherlands

Vintage Postcards of Rotterdam in the Twenties

This blog post is made for growth. A few years ago I produced a series of artificially aged postcards of Rotterdam, seemingly from a bygone era but with contemporary landmarks such as the Markthal, Central Station and Erasmus Bridge. In the meantime, a new generation of architectural highlights is under construction or just completed. And that called for a new series of vintage postcards. There are still fences, scaffolding, site huts or other disfiguring elements around a number of those projects, so I’ll have to wait for the right time to strike. I will place the new additions to the… Read More

Digital painting of a street in downtown Reykjavik, with colorful houses, shops and bars and in the background the famous Hallgrímskirkja

Impressions of Iceland Revisited

The landscapes and towns of Iceland are rewarding subjects for photographs, but they also inspire other forms of art. After four trips I have a hard drive full of pictures of the island of ice and fire. Thousands of photos, but also a growing collection of what I call digital paintings, for lack of a better term. This week it’s been two years since I was in Iceland, together with travel companion A; I wrote this blog post about it back then. It was great to see our beloved Reykjavik again but frankly speaking: the weather could have been better.… Read More

A map of the inner city of Rotterdam, The Netherlands and surrounding neighbourhoods, made of digital scrapwood, plywood and chipboard

Scrapwood Cities: Groningen and Rotterdam

Mid-March, in the week that the corona panic began to take hold, my growing apprehension was somewhat tempered by a nice little job for the municipality of Groningen. They had seen my digital scrapwood map of the Netherlands and wondered if there were more maps like that. And more specifically if there was one of the city of Groningen. That would be a perfect gift for a departing alderman. Blocks That map did not exist yet, but could of course be made. The question was: do I make each neighborhood out of a separate piece of virtual scrapwood, as I… Read More

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.… Read More

View from one of the Lijnbaan apartment buildings towards the newly renovated Pathé cinema on Schouwburgplein with the skyline of Rotterdam on the façade

The Secret Skyline of Rotterdam

Not everyone knows it, but under the movie posters on the facade of the Pathé cinema on Schouwburgplein is a drawing of the skyline of Rotterdam. My drawing of the skyline of Rotterdam, in fact. How did it get there? That’s a long story… Competition A few years ago, in the context of a competition organized by Rotterdam Festivals, I made a graphical representation of the Rotterdam skyline as shown below. The competition was set up to create a new logo for the organization; until that time they already used a stylized skyline, but with the arrival of new landmarks… Read More

Wall with 35 ceramic tiles with kaleidoscopic patterns in spring colors

Springtime in Kaleidoscopia: Mandalas and Milky Ways

Half a year ago I wrote about my first visit to Kaleidoscopia. That magic kingdom where ordinary photographs are transformed into colorful abstract patterns. Where leaves, flowers and other natural phenomena turn into geometric artworks. A few weeks ago I returned to Kaleidoscopia. But while I first used photos of fallen leaves and other autumn scenes, I now submitted pictures of blossom, young leaves and similar springtime scenes to my kaleidoscopic Photoshop actions. The result: 35 new kaleidoscopies, collected below on a tiled wall. And if you think it’s a quilt: be my guest. The question is of course: do… Read More

"Old" vintage postcard, or rather a digitally aged recent photo of the White House and the Old Harbour in Rotterdam

Vintage Rotterdam

Take a good look at this vintage postcard of the White House and the Old Harbour in Rotterdam. An old picture, found in a cardboard box that has been in a cold and humid attic for decades. Let’s try to date it. Fin de siècle Er, did I hear you say fin de siècle? I assume you mean the end of the nineteenth century. That sounds like a valid assumption; the White House, the “American” skyscraper that for years was the highest in Europe, dates back to 1898. And the classic barges in the foreground, located in the Oude Haven,… Read More

49 multicolored kaleidoscopic patterns like tiles on a wall

Mining beauty in Kaleidoscopia

A few weeks ago, I stumbled upon a tutorial about creating kaleidoscopic patterns on Digital Photography School. On that same day there was a lecture about symmetry by Robbert Dijkgraaf, director of Princeton Institute of Advanced Studies, on Dutch TV (it’s in Dutch, but very visual, so you may enjoy it even if you don’t understand a word) Can that be a coincidence? Yes, I guess it can. But it sure is remarkable Photoshop To briefly summarize the tutorial: by copying, mirroring and rotating images in Photoshop and by using the Lighten blending mode you can fabricate wonderful symmetrical kaleidoscopic… Read More