Beautiful wedding photography for Lovers

Travel Photography

Category: Personal

This weekend I went to Brussels with the Thalys. What a nice way to travel! Within 1,5 hours I was at my destination while enjoying two drinks, a snack, comfortable chair and free Internet! And all for a very affordable 39 euro. My husband was already in Brussels so I only had to book one way. The amazing thing was no check in, no waiting lines or anything. I was on the platform 5 minutes before departure and that was it on my way!

But Brussels has not been the only place we visited the last half year either for business or pleasure or both. We went to Benelup in Spain, Berlin Germany, Las Vegas United States, Lissabon Portugal, Funchal Madeira and now Brussels Belgium. I realised I am a very blessed person to be able to see all to different sights.

I like to visit all sort of different places, to see the variety in the way people live, the climat, the surroundings. I always take a camera with me and try to capture the sites but while I travel I am most of all the tourist. So eventhough I vow myself to look beyond the touristy things I end up with, yes you guessed it right the touristy thing.

Ok I give it another shot on our next trip when we go to Lissabon again or to Hong Kong.

Leaving you with some of my travel shots.

Portrait mode

Category: Personal

When I started as a photographer my main subjects were landscapes, still life, interieurs. Things that didn't move. The reason why? I could not fail or so I thought. Landscape just is, just like still life. The only thing I had to deal with were the circumstances (light or darkness, sun or cloud, etc), but with people that is a whole different story or so I thought.

And it surely was in the beginning. Because people are unpredictable and I was scared to pieces to give them direction, tell them what to do, how to look, where to stand. I had no idea what to say. But the beauty with people is that we interact, that we respond to one another. And so together we can create chemistry, magic and that is what we together capture in a photograph. 

Since then I am in portrait mode. Not only the orientation of my camera but I am literally in portrait mode. Looking for that expression, that look, that smile in their eyes. And that is what I want to convey.

But just let me show you what I mean with these smiling eyes.

Have a nice day all.

To capture or create the magic

Category: Tools

I went to a seminar this weekend on Photoshop and Lightroom. I love the Adobe tools because the possibilities are literally endless. Lightroom is a great tool and far easier to use for photographers to help with your workflow. It helps me organise and structure when in Library mode, while in Development mode I can really develop my pictures on so many levels. The best part of it is it will never destroy you original photograph so you can always go back. Something that can easily go wrong when you do it all in Photoshop. So a very comforting though. But then again Photoshop that is a whole world on its one but an overwhelming one as well. Fabulous integration across the various applications. This tool can help me get the most out of every picture. Can turn a mediocre into an amazing picture.

Going to this seminar I thought I could hold my own with these tools but I was wrong, wrong. If I know 1% of all the possibilities that might be stressing it. Boy how impressed I was when I saw how black and white photographs can be transformed into realistic color photographs. Just seeing a fraction of what these tools hold made me want to jump right in. Try to soak in everything there is to know about it. Impossible I know but that is how I am build. If I want to take it all in, I want to take it all in now. I can't wait. And indeed by the end of the night I was on my laptop trying all sort of tips I received in the seminar.

And then I realised that there is no better way to ignite creativity, inspiration, learning, giving and receiving by opening up to new things. To see what can be learned. Invest in myself, read books, attend seminars, workshops. To make me look for that one picture that is in need of rescue. There are times I just want to capture the magic but I really can get a sense of achievement if I manage to create the magic. That is what these tools provide, the option, the choices. Because nothing can give me a better feeling, a kick, umpf when I have saved a photograph.

But it all starts with inspiration so look here the basis of my workflow.

Hot hot hot

Category: Personal

I am a summer girl born in Spring. Give me sun, give me a beach and I am content. I can forever stare at the ocean and warm myself with the rays of the sun. The power of the sun makes me feel alive makes me feel every fibre in my soul. It's my roots I can't help it. Having ancestors that came from warmer places. Maybe that is why I don't understand why we have winter. Why there are so many places that have summer all year round but we don't. And eventhough I have been born here and have lived here all my life I do not adapt to the cold. If I could I would move to warmer places but then I would probably miss this crazy little country to much. Because in the end this is home. And even if I could find a million reasons to escape the cold there is just one reason why I embrass it and that is my fireplace. I love sitting by my fireplace. So as soon as the temperatures drop I drag the logs inside to make a fire. To feel how the warmth of it envelops me, draws me in. With every log I put on the fire I sight a sight of contentment until the room feels like an oven and my husband looks at me with that you did it again look. Meaning it is so hot in the room that when I close my eyes fall asleep on the couch.

So tell me, can you feel the heat?

True sense of Self

Category: Personal

Everyone has a role in life and the role of a photographer is usually behind the camera to capture others. It is a nice place to be behind that camera. No worries about a bad hair day, what to wear (this is off course not true) or how to look into that camera. But i find that being behind the camera can be as intimidating a in front of it. To meet the expectations of the client can cause a lot of stress honestly. Because whatever happens failure is not an option. 

So how to prevent failure from happening? For starters work with proper gear. That resolves about half of all problems. Then come prepared. So have a back up camera, format all the memory disks in the camera, have your battery fully charged and back ups available. It sounds very straight forward and to be honest it is.

But where was I? Ah yes I remember. As a photographer you are never in sight of a camera lens. So you can image that being in front of the camera myself this one time I felt a little uneasy. With the self timer I wanted to capture with this picture who I really am. A woman obviously, a wive (if you look closely you will see a ring), a sister, a friend, a project manager, a photographer, a writer. But off course these are all labels that I can tag on myself.

That is not who I really am. No my true sense of self is simple. I am a soul, a source of light.

Well hope you can see it.

Grand master


Photography is magical, I tell nothing new. I have known this since I bought my first camera somewhere in the 80's. It was a Practica camera and everything about it was manual. If I wanted to have a proper expose shot it took me about a week to get set up properly. Just so you have an idea of how easy the digital era has become for photographers. Taking a picture used to be hard work and really that pictures ended up being great was all magical in itself. After the Practica my dad gave me a Canon EOS650. A really great camera that I still have after 20 years. If I put in a new battery it is still good to go. The pictures got better no doubt with this camera but still I had not idea what I was doing. The down side of it was I had to wait sometimes  to see the result. So in my mind I thought I had shot amazing pictures that in reality did not resemble any of what I saw printed. With the digital camera I thought all of that would be behind me. Now I was going to take great pictures. It wasn't that easy though. No, it took me a couple of years to get the pictures I desire. I have read enless number of books and magazines on the topic. I have and still read a lot of Blog's of photographers to disect how they take their pictures.

So how did I learn? First I went to school, the Foto Academie. I did the basic training year and that really worked for me. I decided I was only going to buy new gear when I could control my existing camera and finally I did. During basic training we could only present our pictures in black and white. When I heard I was dissapointed. Why black and white? Off course it all had to do with mastering the basics and after this training I must confess I love black and white.

Secondly, I have learned that photography can only be mastered one way and that is practice, practice, practice. To get the results you are looking for, you have to take that camera out of the bag and take a picture. Freeze that 1/400 of a second and capture the magic. No matter what it is. Things, landscape, people, it doesn't matter. Have you children, husband or wife model for you to get it. In in digital you can always throw everything in the pin and start all over. 

A group of my class at the Foto Academy still get's together to pratice, learn and off course have some fun. We have assignments to get us out of our comfort zone which is something you can try. What does not feel comfortable to you but is something you really want to shoot. Take your camera and go for it. Go on give yourself an assignment.

The assignment we have in our club is create a still life in black and white in the style of the old grand masters painter.

Off course I will not leave you without a sample of my still life

Sidney, Karin & Bobbie

I know my friend Karin for more than 8 years. Being pregnant of her second child and with her daughter growing like crazy, I thought it a good idea to have a family session. With all of the snow falling this was a great oppertunity to go outside and take some great pictures of this family in the snow.

Little Bobbie was amazing, a real topmodel in the making. She is only a year and a half but she needed no instruction what so ever. So aware of the camera. She even came to me to look at herself on the camera, to look at Bobbetje! No crying all morning. You got to love this little girl. With Sidney also present I had the chance to take quite a number of great shots of this really great family.

Well I have selected a number of my favorites. Enjoy.

Crazy traphic

Category: Personal

What happens in a country that is not used to snow? Chaos. We are in our third week of snow and still not used to it. While everybody was dreaming of a white x-mas we are now all officially done with it. The snow that is because the country is taken with the ice skating fever and not willing to let go. But back to the snow. I am so glad I took winter tyers a couple of years ago because I really disliked driving in the snow. Well I still is not my favorite hobby but way better then sliding across the road on my summer tyers. I would say it is worth every penny of the investment knowing that they can save your live.

But then yesterday when out of nowhere an unexpected amount of snow fell from the sky we had the worst traphic ever in history. In 10 minutes 10 centimetres of snow fell. Traphic came to a complete hold. They had to get in the snow plowers to clear the road. It only took them five hours to figure this out.

Near the city the traphic dissolved at about 02:00 in the morning. I repeat 02:00 in the morning. Can you imagine being in a car driving home from work at about 5:00 pm and not get home until 2 in the morning? Nowhere to go but behind the car in front of you. No food or drink or a place to pee. Well you can image what the weather stations had to endure not calling for a weather alarm. Hopefully they have learned from this because as I was home in a very reasonable amount of time I had to do with all those people stuc in traphic and public transport.

6 o'clock

Category: Personal

I open one eye and look at the clock. It's 1:05 am and I am hoping for sleep. I toss and turn but I see every hour in the night. The past two and a half weeks were amazing. No work and all play, playing golf on two great courses in Madeira, eating good food, drinking nice wine and hoping for suneshine. Well that didn't went as planned (all though I have to admit that we had two days of golf with sun and 20oC and us  just in t-shirts on the course) but everything is better than the snow we left behind in Amsterdam.

Eventhough more than half of our week abroad was filled with rain, that gave me the change to read books and think about the one that is taking shape in my head. Thanks to Mike Larson I started with the 4-hour workweek of Tim Ferris ( which I absolutely love and can recommand. Then I continued with a Lisa Scottoline (any book of her is a pleasure). So after a year of hard work my husband and I finally had time to relax and enjoy being abroad before x-mas which is rather strange when on Madeira. Everywhere x-mas music could be heard and Dean Martin's I am dreaming of a white x-mas sounded surreal on an island that has such high temperatures in December.

When we returned we came back to snow and actually had a official white x-mas since 1981. The last week we sat in front of the fireplace and only went outside to shoot some pictures. Which turned out really great.

I tell myself to go to sleep, work is waiting and the alarm will wake me at 6 o'clock but that is tomorrow. Let me sign off with some of my winter pictures of Ronald.

To New Beginnings

Category: Personal

3..2..1.. Happy New Year! Well here we go. A new year with a first entry in my blog! I am so excited to have this blog as a document of all the things happening in 2010. Can you even image it was only 10 years ago when we started a new millenium and now we are in a new decenium. So much to hope for, so much to share. This being the year of new beginnings. This will be the year to define my future. To define where I want to be in 2015. I know that might seem like a long way from where we are today but with a blink of an eye these 5 years will fly by.

It seems like yesterday when I got married 6,5 years ago. When our national team lost in the 8th finales of the World Cup or the quarter finales in the European Championship soccer in 2006.

This year is an Olympic year where the youth of the world come together in the spirit that particpating is more important than winning. Well I want to win this year, not just participate. Overcome the challenges I have set for this year. Like developing myself as a professional photographer. Write the book that is in my head. Only do what I really enjoy. Find the muze!
So come along for the ride. Do I here a whistle? 'All aboard. People all over the world join the love train.'

And as this is a blog about my photography lets start with how winter has taken over our country. It looks more like the North Pole than Holland. Two weeks of snow... but it sure looks pretty.