This last week of 2016 is a good moment to look back and reflect. I'm happy that I've completed two photo projects this year, but also found inspiration to start new projects which will keep me going in 2017. These are four of my favourite photos of last year.
In March I visited the Orkney Islands to complete my project Defending the Fleet. It was my fifth trip, the first time was in 2009. The main purpose of this last trip was to create an impression of the fortifications on the small island of Flotta in Scapa Flow. It was a stormy day with dramatic clouds. My photo of the control tower at Stanger Head is a welcome addition to my project portfolio. I will miss Orkney with its historic sites, great landscape and kind people.
This year I also completed my project Water as a Weapon. My first photos date from 2008, so this is my longest photo project so far. A photo of one of the sluices at Fort Everdingen was still on my shooting list. I wanted a photo of this sluice while covered with frost. The winter of 2016 was mild and the few opportunities and attempts were unsuccessful. In March I finally managed to shoot the sluice with a thin layer of frost.
In November I made a trip to the Vosges Mountains in France to visit the battlefields of the First World War. A hike to the top of La Tête des Faux was on my bucketlist for a long time. This remote site is rarely visited and still authentic. After a hike of 1,5 hours I reached the top. It was cold, misty and it rained all day. I made an impression of the remains of this battlefield. I was so impressed by what I’ve seen that I decided to start a new photo project about the Battle of Vosges.
The woodlands around my village are always an inspiring place to hang out with my camera or find some rest. The 4th of June started with a warm and misty morning. It was an unexpected surprise and I rushed to the woods. It was so hot and humid, it felt like being in the jungle. I followed a different trail than usual and found this group of dancing trees. The composition, atmosphere and tones make this photo my favourite of 2016.