December

I'll start by explaining the photograph, it is the entrance to the harbour (haven in Dutch) at Scheveningen, The Hague. It has taken me what can only be described as a ridiculous amount of time to learn Port (left)  and Starboard (right). Even now I laugh at myself about how very simple things can trip me up. As a geographer probably the most embarrassing thing to admit is that I still sometimes use NESW (never eat shredded wheat) when I think about east and west. 

So back to the point of this post, apart from the pretty photo of a storm brewing.


All my living in the moment went straight out the window when I realised that December is here and good lord where the hell did the rest of the year go? No seriously, where the hell did the rest of the year go? I have stuff to finish and do, December is not a productive month. To many mince pies to eat and sweet tea to drink. :-)

I reflect once again on achievements made over the year, the new people I have met, reconnecting with those that I had lost touch with and personal achievements that I feel good about. It's easy to look and find the things that I feel good about, so I have been trying to deconstruct the parts of the year that I don't feel good about or that went wrong.

I was once taught to remove my emotions from criticism and to try to look at criticism objectively and rationally. It's amazing how useful this has been throughout my life. It has allowed me to think about any problems or criticism and not react "all guns blazing". It has provided a useful technique in thinking about what I could have done better and how this could have been achieved and can be avoided in the future.

In every December I look forward to the winter solstice. I have always felt that this is a much more significant day in the calendar than any other, the general thought of our planet spinning through a vast universe in almost perfect balance makes me laugh at how insignificant we are. So spare some time on the 21st December at 16:28 for the point where the day starts getting longer again.

Thanks for reading!

November

Image courtesy of @alycoste

November, for me, marks the start of dark nights and frosty mornings, usually still pleasant frosty mornings. The most exciting thing about the dark nights is the start of Light Trail Season again... I am sure that my Instagram account is going to start filling up with them, and I'll give some more attention to the @lighttraillovers account this month as well. 

I always take a little time at the start of each month to evaluate what I have achieved in the previous month and it would seem that October is past too fast and some of the tasks that I planned have been pushed back a little.

I didn't manage to get a webmap into this site of the locations of my photographs, primarily due to the platform I am using. I did do a lot of research on different webmaps that I could use and at this point I am just trying my hardest to avoid using a google map, I think there are more creative ways to provide a point map from a database.

I was able to visit a few locations that were new to me last month; Incholm Abbey & Island, The Birks o' Aberfeldy a more in depth visit of the Hermitage near Dunkeld and was able to photograph the Tay Rail Bridge for the first time. It was a good month for photography, I learnt a lot and re-discovered some forgotten techniques and developed a taste for apocalyptic processing.

I also have a trip planned back to The Hague for a long weekend in Novemeber, make sure the apartment is still where I left it and catch up with friends and see what opportunities can be taken in The Netherlands. The winter lights will be up by now and the city always looks great at this time of the year, I am very much looking forward to going back. 

I only include one photograph in this post, which is of me, courtesy of the talented @alycoste, taken during our recent trip to the Birks o' Aberfeldy (of which I'll be posting photographs of soon).

September

Lange Voorhout - The Hague

I can almost taste winter in the morning right now, I actually thought for a second that the morning dew on my car windscreen was frozen this morning. I was positively excited by the prospect of having to scrape the windscreen. September has long been my favourite month of the year. In years gone past it has been the month that I returned to University, or at least started to build apprehension of going back. Nowadays it signifies that Winter is Coming, without the White Walkers of course.

I look forward to the nights getting longer and the temperatures dropping. As a photographer it means that light trails become ever present in my photo stream, sunsets are harder to catch but sunrise gets easier (especially in my case) and probably most important, the air gets clearer and the photographs crisper.

Of course Winter has drawbacks that most people like to complain about such as not being able to feel your hands after being outside for ten minutes, but I think that it is a price worth paying.

I have added my favourite winter shot from my favourite place to this post, I may have posted it in here at some other point but it is worth posting again. I hope you are as excited by the prospect of winter as I am.

Rotterdam

My final set of photographs from my recent trip to The Netherlands. I spent the day in Rotterdam with @catwith8lives soaking in the sun and wandering around the city. Rotterdam is a major port city in the Dutch province of South Holland. It has a long seafaring history. During the second world war it was almost totally destroyed and since then it is renown for its bold modern architecture.

I haven't spent a lot of time in Rotterdam, although I have a few photos in my back catalogue. I was eager to take some shots of the Erasmusbrug, which you will notice from the images below is missing. The shots I got of it were just so bad I would be embarrassed to display them publicly. The light was 'weird' and I couldn't get the angle I wanted and I have about another 40 excuses I could use, but really my problem was that I wanted the shot to be at night and long exposure. I guess I will take this into account the next time I am there and not go on the sunniest hottest day ever in the middle of summer. The ‘Erasmusbrug’ (Erasmus Bridge) is one of the icons of Rotterdam. One of Holland’s most famous bridges, it was officially opened by Queen Beatrix in 1996 as an important connection between the Northern and Southern parts of Rotterdam. One day I will get the shot that I want, it just didn't happen on this day...

I did visit the "Kubuswoningen" (Cube Houses) which were fantastic to look around and also visited the Martkhall (Market Hall) which was a very impressive structure, especially good for lunch and other various goodies that are in the images below.

 

The Hague

Two interpretations of The Hague. Much like my thinking when I am here.

I always enjoy being here. I enjoy spending time with my friends and hanging out in Huppel de Pub't Ogenblik and of course getting my hair cut in Studio Noordeinde. Much of my time here is now spent meeting clients or taking photographs.

I spend a lot of time thinking about past people, events and places when I am here, things that are never to return. I have realised this week that it is time to move on and forward and to make new memories. Essentially moving on from the past.