Strabrechtse Heide

I am an idiot. But sometimes its nice to be an idiot.
So I went out to shoot some landscape and sunset shots last night, at the Strabrechtse Heide. Very cool, all good. Only to forget how big this natural heath land is. 

So the entire distance that I had walked from where I had parked my car needed to be covered again. I am talking quite some kilometers here. And all in the dark. Now, walking our hiking in the dark is no issue. But at this place it gets DARK!! 

About 30 minutes before the sun went down

About 30 minutes before the sun went down

Trust me, hiking this place in the dark was no joke. It got my adrenaline levels right up, because there's wild boars, wild Highland cattle probably not super happy with me strolling through their habitat during breeding season. While I am actually also managing to find my way back in the pitch black forest. 

But hey, that's my dose of adventure for this week! Haha... But let me tell you, I was quite happy to make it out of the forest a bit faster then usual this time...

Quality time with mother nature.

Quality time with mother nature.

Check out more images in the gallery below. Click on them to see the original aspect ratio.
Thanks again for looking at my work, it means a lot to me. Feel free to comment and share.

Faroe Islands

Hi all, I am super stoked to announce that I will finally be going to the Faroe Islands!! Its officialy going to happen later on in 2018. I will go out on a 9 day trip, exploring this amazing country that has been on my wishlist for quite a while now. I am beyond excited! 

And this is only the first of a few other amazing announcements I have coming up for 2018. Next year is going to be so awesome!

Faroe Islands

Out and About 3: Großer De-Witt-See & Ferkensbruch

With the weekend in front of me I decided to end my week with a nice little outdoor photo session. I was going to have to drive a bit for work anyways, so why not make a little detour on the way home and take my camera gear with me? Right? Right! I had been scouting Google Maps for a little bit the past few days for nice locations in Germany, just across the border. My recent trip to the Krickenbecker Seen in Hombergen got me going to find more similar places.

So in doing so I came across two places pretty close to each other that might make interesting photo locations. I am talking about the Großer De-Witt-See & Ferkensbruch. Both situated close to Lobberich in North Rhine Westphalia. Lobberich is situated some 15 minutes away from Venlo, The Netherlands. So really, this place is around the corner. I love living close to other countries. So much.

I found the Großer De-Witt-See quite nice. Calm little lake with lots of nature around it. 
This resulted in me shooting a nice set of photographs of the place. Have a look at the gallery below. (Click the images to see them in full size)

Ferkensbruch was a little bit disappointing, small, not much nice viewpoints over the water and a little bit of a boring place. You can't win them all. I do have one nice photo from that place though. All in all not a bad way to start my weekend, and being able to enjoy the outdoors like this is really all that counts anyways.

Ferkensbruch. 

Ferkensbruch. 

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Into the woods with my new friend.

I went out on a little photo trip with my new friend Chris Kuik. We have been planning to go and shoot for quite some time now. Also, I have been talking to Chris online for about 2 years, but we've never actually met before. So strange because we don't live that far away from each other and we both share the same passion for photography. Funny situation.

So finally this happened. We went out and just had a good time enjoying the nature and snapping shots. Hope we can go on similar trips more often from now on. Have a look at some of the pics we took. 

New camera / Nikon D500

So recently I had to buy a new camera. Something I didn't plan on doing just yet. It was more of a necessity than anything else...

My good old Nikon D7000, that I will be using still even though its not 100% reliable anymore... Will mainly use it for some landscapes and some videos probably. I can't let it go, it's still a very capable camera

Reason why? My trusty good old Nikon D7000 kind of broke down on me. I was happily shooting away with it on this recent event photo job I got booked for. When suddenly this error showed up on my display. At first it looked like it was only a coincidental error so I didn't bother too much about it. But then it kept coming back, and back, and back... I was going crazy. It seems that the mechanism of the shutter is worn out. If I take a photo more than 50% of the time the shutter "fails". So though the camera still "functions" it's just not reliable anymore. Sending it in for repairs is probably out of question, I probably have lost warranty after years of use. But I am not getting rid of this camera, not at all. I can see myself still using the Nikon D7000 for landscapes, and some video purposes. But its not usable on jobs anymore where every moment and every click should be captured instead of hoping the camera actually taking the photo. (Luckily I had a Nikon D3100 on me as backup to photograph the event, all turned out well in the end)

My new camera, the Nikon D500. a true masterpiece. FX quality camera in a DX format body.

So, it was now time to purchase a new camera, because. Yes... I can't be running around with a sketchy camera. I need my gear to work. I have been looking to get a obvious step up from my Nikon D7000 for some time, but now I had too anyways. So, its was time to decide. Do I go FX or do I stick with DX? With most of lenses being DX and not having the budget to invest in a FX body with a set of FX lenses I decided to stick with DX. But the next question was, what camera is a step up from my Nikon D7000, is it going to be the 7100/7200/7500 or maybe even the D500. Some sleepless nights later comparing specs I decided to go for Nikon's DX flagship, the incredible D500. I just felt that stepping up from the 7K series was the right thing to do, and really take it up a notch while still being it a DX camera. There's no better DX camera then the Nikon D500. 

Some short facts about the D500: 20.9mp APS-C sensor, iso 52. AF system is the same as in the Nikon D5 (Nikon's FX top model) 10fps continuous shooting. 4K 30fps, 1080p 60fps, high iso (up to 51.200) and so on... Its basically a professional FX camera with all these specs. But just with a DX sensor. The right choice for me considering the amount of DX lenses I use.  

The Nikon D500 and the Nikon D7000 next to each other. Its obvious that the D500 is the bigger adult brother of the D7000. Both camera's are totally awesome.

Below are two first landscape photo's I shot with the Nikon D500. I really love how fast it focuses even in low light. Image quality and dynamic range are impressive. Certainly improved here compared to the D7000. I am aware the D500 is more of a sports/wildlife camera with its AF system and 10fps burst mode. But I can't see why it won't make a bad ass landscape camera too. Do you agree?

Beegderheide

Sunset on the Beegderheide.

I have also tested out the video function on the D500 for a little bit. Watch in 4K!

Video: Denmark and Iceland 2016

Snæfellsnes, Iceland

Last year my wife and I have been to Denmark (as we so often do) and we went to Iceland for the first time. I did shoot some footage with my action camera and turned all that random footage into a little travel video a while ago. But I wasn't really happy with how that turned out, so did not share it around too much.

I've bought a macbook pro recently and I now have Final Cut Pro X, really awesome and super easy to use. Great piece of video editing software. So I re-edited all the footage from our trip and decided to put this out there for you to enjoy!

*Note: I am not a professional videographer, all my video stuff is DIY and amateur. Mainly for fun and learning matters. The shot in this video are random, I did not plan to shoot on any location in particular (so you might miss some of the more typical locations in this video.)
And all footage is just point and shoot, handheld, pretty straight forward stuff. Nothing pro at all. The slow motion of some clips does give a nice cinematic look and feel to it at times, I love that. 

Enjoy! any comments or critique is welcome!

Hoge Venen & Bieley

Last week we had a public holiday, Kings-day. We celebrated the 50th birthday of our King. I had this day off just like many other Dutch people. I went and celebrated this day, you guessed it... Not in The Netherlands, haha. Instead of staying home I got into my car and drove off southbound. Into the Hoge Venen in Belgium and in Germany. I have always wanted to pay a proper visit to this area. And the weather was pretty good, skies full with nice clouds so off I went.

I first made my way down to this area just down south of Monschau, Germany. I have seen some photos of this rock called the "Bieley" and I was quite curios to how it would look and what kind of photographic perspective it offered over the valley beneath. I have seen a few photographs that looked promising. And boy, was I right. I had to walk for a few kilometers over some well organized paths through the forest to finally come up to a much smaller and "less traveled" path. At first I was skeptical to take this path and see where it would end up. Although I was pretty sure that this was going towards the rock I was looking for. So off I went deeper and deeper into the woods. All of a sudden I saw the rock peep out between the trees and overlooking this little valley beneath. Breathtaking place. With a little stream curving and finding its way through the valley. Surrounded by mighty pine forests. On top of this rock it really felt as if I was in the Alps or something. Really spectacular viewpoint and location. It was so good to be alone for a bit, taking in the environment around me and enjoying it. This place is so good to photograph, everywhere you look there's great shots waiting to be captured.

After making my way back to the car I decided to drive back home through Belgium. And I had a little stop in "Parc naturel Hautes Fagnes - Eifel" close to Ternell.
I got out the car and shot some more photographs in these great forests that are all around you in this area. The road that I drove crosses these massive woods. You really feel like you are alone with nature, something I really love and makes me feel comfortable. With everything. A nice way to spend a day off and an even better way to recharge. 

“Travel makes one modest. You see what a tiny place you occupy in the world.” – Gustave Flaubert

Out and About 1: Leudal

Hi all, I am going to start this series of blogs called "Out and About" This series will be blog posts about National Parks and other great outdoor locations in and around the area where I live. I will be showing you some of the most known, and lesser known spots and places in these areas.

So today I went to "Het Leudal" which is a beautiful nature reserve in the municipality of Leudal, In The Netherlands
Leudal is a municipality with close to 40.000 people living in it. With it being the biggest municipality in Central Limburg it is still very green, and has this great outdoor feel to it. No big overcrowded cities or busy highways here. The nature reserve is quite big (for Dutch standards) It extends over 900 hectares. And is filled with beautiful forests, little streams, wide open fens and plenty of hiking trails. Great place to forget everything around you, and breathe some fresh air.

Below are some photographs that I've taken today, all of them were taken between "Heythuysen" "Roggel" and "Haelen". All three are towns located in and around "Het Leudal" The nature reserve is much bigger then the tiny area I covered today, perhaps I have to dedicate a second "Out and About" blog to "Het Leudal" to cover some more areas of this place, and show you some more beauty of it through photographs!

The weather was quite dramatic today, a bit windy, heavy clouds. But that all made for quite dramatic conditions, conditions that I like to be out in. And that really work for landscape photography. Enjoy!

My wife, the interior designer

This post goes out to my lovely wife. She is just the best person period to begin with. She has this talent. This really amazing talent. In my eyes she is a very good interior designer. She sees it as a hobby only. But when you look at the style and feel she creates inside the house it really blows me away. As if a professional interior designer came in and did its job. That's how it feels to me at least!

Personally I have not a very good idea of what interior design actually is. Sure I do know what I like, and how I like a house to be decorated and look like. But I don't have these specific skills I think my wife does have. I do know the style is kind of "Scandinavian" if I am correct. But what do I know. This blog post is therefore more of a appreciation then actually telling you something about interior design, because I simply can't, haha...

All I know is that I love the way she plays with light, material, and small details to make our house a home! hit the share and like button below if you agree!!

Bite of Iceland

Amazing photo by "Bite of Iceland"

Amazing photo by "Bite of Iceland"

Adam and Marta from Poland run this great site and travel blog about Iceland, called "Bite Of Iceland"

Bite of Iceland serves stories spiced with tundra herbs, tales covered in thick fog, anecdotes overheard from the elves, all in all, Icelandic delights – all of them bite-sized. Apart from that, we will teach you, among other things, how to hunt for northern lights, how to go scot-free after a meeting with a shark, how to avoid going bankrupt when travelling in Iceland. Very interesting site if you're looking to find more information about traveling in Iceland.

They have recently posted this great article about traveling to Iceland for 4 days.
Is spending a few days in Iceland worth it at all? Is it possible to leave it without irritation,
because you haven't seen the whole island? Sure! click the link below to find out more!

Snæfellsnes Peninsula – Iceland in a nutshell