After completion of my study Fine Arts at the Willem de Kooning Academy in Rotterdam I began to specialise in staged photography combined with underwater photography.
In fact I don’t call myself a photographer, rather an imaging artist.
My work is about duality and the search for inner balance.
I work referring to sketches of a concept that almost always is an answer to previous creations
I did a lot of drawing and painting in the past.
In fact I have not changed very much in my method of working compared to the way I did during my painting period.
I work as a creative imaging artist and to that purpose I use photography as my medium.
This medium is the last link to the final result.
The approach is in fact equal to that of a painter.
I also work in layers like painting in oil, I build up the image slowly. Either my studio or under water and finally make the finishing touch on the computer.
The costumes (and in fact all auxiliary materials) I make or remake myself in my studio.
In the first stadium of the image I work with live models and each model gets her own unique costume, atmosphere and universe.
There is some kind of undulation in the working process from the first idea to the final picture.
In general I produce 1 series of pictures a year, consisting of approximately 8 creations, sometimes more.
The creative part , the start of a new series, is the most intensive period within the process.
Fortunately it does not take too much time, a couple of weeks at the most, or else I would perish.
The bombardment of images developing in my head is rather overwhelming and completely takes over my mind.
So many hatches open, even those I never knew they existed.
I force myself to halt this process enabling me to enter a new phase, also an interesting and a very active period, manufacturing all the staging auxiliaries, as well as shooting en searching spaces and backgrounds.
The third phase is photo-shooting the models with the costumes and auxiliaries applied, followed by the underwater shoots, which are both completely technical and emotional processes of letting loose the original picture. The water takes over.
Sometimes the costumes I worked on for weeks are hardly recognisable in the final image.
The last phase is the finishing on the computer in order to combine all the layers together to 1 image.
In this process I try to control the influence of the water.
It is always a battle within myself, searching for the right balance and thrill of the image.
At first glance the images have an aesthetical attitude which appear to be less friendly when observed more carefully.
This dual momentum and paradox returns in all my work, every time in a slightly different appearance.
Water reflections are an important element in my work and, in fact the only element that I can’t fully control. The water makes sure that both of the staged image and the surrealistic water reflections are in an interesting and fascinating new balance.
Water brings a certain spontaneity in my work and also surrealism and alienation of reality.
What first looks like to be a fairy-tale-like aesthetical image gets a shape in which frustration and destruction dominate.
The reality and the reflection keep each other in balance.