Category Archives: Holland

FOOD PHOTO TIPS – no, not from me, from a pro

Kyonne Leyser shows us how it's done.

Kyonne Leyser shows us how it’s done.

Put a plate of food in front of the modern diner and before the presentation is disturbed, out comes the smartphone and the meal is shared with the world. With a few simple changes, most of those shots could be a whole lot better.

At the fabulous Food Unplugged event in Ede*, Nederland’s ‘City of Taste’, a workshop on smartphone photography with professional food shooter Kyonne Leyser was possibly the most popular event.

I picked up some tips and tried to put them into practice immediately. Continue reading

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AMSTERDAM’S BEST PARKS – my top five

Cycling in the Amsterdamse Bos. There are over 50km of paths to choose from.

Cycling in the Amsterdamse Bos. There are over 50km of paths to choose from.

Most visitors to Amsterdam discover the beautiful Vondelpark. It’s already several metres below sea level and sinking all the time, possibly under the weight of the 20 million feet that tramp through it each year.

It’s not the only park in town, and those who have time shouldn’t overlook some of the city’s other leafy and lively open spaces. Continue reading

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DUTCH CYCLING INFRASTRUCTURE – NSW, you could do this too!

There's nothing special about this cycle way and the windmills in Holland. Elsewhere in the world it would be a marvel and a major tourist attraction.

There’s nothing special about this cycle way in Holland. Elsewhere in the world it would be a marvel and a major tourist attraction.

The Government of NSW (it’s a place in Australia) has just announced that it will rip up one of the few separated cycleways in central Sydney and not replace it until after a new light rail line has been installed – a process that is likely to take 2-3 years! Click here for a summary of the sad story.

They could learn a thing or two from how the Dutch have organised cycling infrastructure.

Today we had to travel from Amsterdam to Beverwijk for a family lunch. It’s about a 60km round trip, it was a fine day, so I decided to do it on the bike, carrying the camera and taking a few shots along the way. Continue reading

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ARTZUID PHOTO TIP – take a lady in red with you

Our favourite for 2015 - Duma, by Barcelona artist Jaume Plensa

Our favourite for 2015 – Duma, by Barcelona artist Jaume Plensa


Mevrouw T and I are big fans of Amsterdam’s biennial sculpture exhibition ArtZuid.

The setting may not be quite as spectacular as that of Sydney’s wonderful Sculpture by the Sea, but the leafy gardens of the Apollolaan and Minervalaan in the Oud Zuid (Old South) district are lovely too. Continue reading

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LEFTOVER LOWLAND LANDSCAPES – my favourite shots

Behind the town of Zaandam is the area known as De Gouw, 'The Shire'. It's not large and there's not a lot there. I can see why shires appealed to J.R.R. Tolkien.

Behind the town of Zaandam is the area known as De Gouw, ‘The Shire’. It’s not large and there’s not a lot there. I can see why shires appealed to J.R.R.Tolkien.


We’re entering ‘Year in Review’ mode, so it’s time to publish photos that didn’t quite fit into any other stories.

Landscape photography suits me well. Unlike friends and relatives, birds and bikes, landscapes stay relatively still while you fiddle with the camera settings. I’m coming to appreciate Dutch scenery more and more. There are no spectacular snow-capped mountains, towering waterfalls or breathtaking desert canyons. Instead everything in little Nederland is on a small and manageable scale.

The English word ‘landscape’ is derived from the Dutch word ‘landschap’. Remember that! Now you can say you learned something by visiting this blog. Continue reading

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ONE AMSTERDAM CANAL – FIVE SHOTS

I was rather pleased with this early morning shot. It got me thinking about how our lovely canal changes according to the light.

I was rather pleased with this early morning shot.

The balcony is our favourite part of our apartment, overlooking the Schinkel, Amsterdam’s busy working canal.

Taking the photo above reminded me of how extraordinarily different the Schinkel looks depending on the time of day, the season, the activity and the light. Continue reading

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IS BLACK PIET STILL FUN?

Sinterklaas and Zwarte Piet. Photo: Wikicommons.

Sinterklaas and Zwarte Piet. Photo: Wikicommons.

The Netherlands’ favourite topic of dinner party/water cooler conversation around December 5th is “Is Zwarte Piet racisme?” (Is Black Pete racism?)

It took me some time to make up my mind on this one. Continue reading

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