Monday, 31 August 2009

happy monday

i'm tired but happy - and you?

i'll postpone the post about bigger pictures for a moment (it's not forgotten though!), since i doubt i'd be able to string together too many sensible sentences this morning. let me leave you with a few pictures my five-year-old nephew took the weekend before last at my parents' at our family party, following everybody round with my little point-and-shoot camera. what fun!

have a good start to your week, whatever you're up to!

Saturday, 29 August 2009


bear with me, will you...?

panton lamp

ok, let's try this. i'm figuring out different ways of posting large images to my blog - and if it all goes to plan, will tell you all about it very soon. watch this space...

Friday, 28 August 2009

why people photograph

well, if you could see my sofa. most of the time, i'm sitting on the right side of it and on the left, well, i pile up magazines, books, diaries, postcards, things that inspire me. they stay there until guests come round, when i clear it all up and it all begins all over again... in the mornings, i try to sit down with my coffee and read a little bit before i start work, sometimes i have books that keep me company for a good while. one of my inspiring reads recently is why people photograph by robert adams. it's a loose collection of essays written by adams for various publications on various topics. some of them gripped me more than others, but i love the way he speaks very plainly about being a photographer, there's no pretension or self-importance, it's all very honest and down-to-earth, sometimes suprisingly so. i really recommend it.

in his essay on teaching, adams refers to harry callahan, who not only left an amazing body of work as a photographer but also taught photography for many decades. i'll just have to share that quote with you:

"i really didn't have that much to teach. i didn't even believe in it. i felt so strongly that everybody had to find their own way. and nobody can teach you your own way . . . in terms of art, the only real answer that i know of is to do it. if you don't do it, you don't know what might happen."

p.s.: obviously, i don't want to put down teaching, i think it's one of the greatest things ever. but you know what i mean, right? 

Wednesday, 26 August 2009

just to slow for them

every time i pick up processed film from the lab i learn something new. from the pictures that just didn't come out as much as from the ones that may look fine but are not quite what i want. i'm still very much finding my feet, but it's never boring and ever thought provoking. i'm sure you know what i mean, no matter if you use film or work with a digital camera. do tell, what fascinates you most about taking pictures and looking at the results?

not too many of the pictures i took with my praktica of my nieces and nephews last weekend came out too well. these kids are just too fast for me! i realised that tomatos and lemons are much more forgiving when using slow shutter speeds than playing children. who would have thought...

Tuesday, 25 August 2009


it seems i missed quite a few new posts on my favourite blogs over the past couple of weeks and i apologise for stopping by so rarely. that's not to do with lack of interest, but it turns out i'm having problems with both my blogger reader and my google reader. both only seem to pick up on a random selection of the blogs i'm following or subscribing to. i have no idea why - maybe it's a clash of these two readers or the following/subscription system? if you have any thoughts on this, do let me know, i'd really like to solve this problem.

Monday, 24 August 2009

mix-tape one

i had a most wonderful weekend and hope you did too. thought i'd start a new little series with picture combinations and something to listen to. hope you enjoy!

waves in venice. an oh-so-lovely phone in london (unfortunatly not mine). and a song that'll make you smile.

Saturday, 22 August 2009


my friend eva convinced me to come and join her on usedom (an island in the baltic sea) last weekend by texting me: 'it's wonderful here, the garden is full of apples. you must come, we can cook.'

and so i went. a four-hour train ride later (it's not that far really, but the regional train stops just everywhere) i was there. i love that garden. we picked some apples and gathered others that had fallen off the tree and made apple cake, apple jelly and a savoury dish with apple and onion sauce.

as you can see, eva is not only very convincing but also a mean hand model.

Thursday, 20 August 2009


i was wondering why i am feeling a bit funny and realised i had forgotten to have breakfast. (i bet this never happens to jen, who always records her morning meals so beautifully.) but i am a bit like that. there seem to be so many things going on in my mind lately that there just isn't enough room for everything. i remember when i was ten or eleven, i once when to school without my schoolbag. i had to walk 15 minutes to get to the schoolbus stop, then a 45 minute ride to school and i still only noticed when the teacher asked us to take out our books. little miss head in the clouds.

anyway, these are some more pictures from my weekend at the sea. i love that old garden. and the weather was so beautiful that we had breakfast out on the terrace every morning. bliss.

have a good day!

Wednesday, 19 August 2009

a bit of beach

i'm a bit tired tonight, so there'll be just a bit of beach for you with not much writing to illuminate it all. pictures taken last weekend at heringsdorf on usedom, on the german baltic coast. lovely it was.

let me just say i really enjoyed that there were so many real people on the beach. none of that size zero nonsense.

Tuesday, 18 August 2009

back from the sea

back in berlin, three rolls of film are sitting on my kitchen table, waiting to be processed. you'll be the first to see them... it was a wonderful weekend, full of sunshine and good times with friends. and quite a few random insights:

- open fires in a summer garden are hard to beat
- apple jelly doesn't taste great when you accidentally pour too much water into the pot
- speedos aren't a good idea on virtually anyone. trunks, please
- you need patient friends when you can't pick apples without taking pictures every two seconds
- it's very tempting to steal vintage towels of which there are plenty to be seen on usedom beaches (i didn't, don't worry)
- happiness = a beach basket (strandkorb) for a day = 6 euros

hoping you'll be ok with a couple of lemons on my coffee table for the time being, since those three film rolls are still sitting on my kitchen table...

Thursday, 13 August 2009

first steps

finally got my act together and set up a flickr account. it will probably take a while until i get my head around it properly, but it's a start. (i may just start bugging you with questions...) would love to see you there! 

these pictures were taken on a market, on a hot summer's day in saint-martin-de-craux, not far from arles. i so miss the sun-drenched flavours of the south.

p.s.: thank you so much for all your feed-back so far on my camera question! some of you dropped me a comment, some of you sent me an email. thank you, thank you for your thoughts and ideas, this is such a big help. i'm still happy to hear what you are thinking, so leave me a comment if you like (i do read english, french, dutch and german, so any of these languages is fine ;))!

Tuesday, 11 August 2009

arles: me and robert and roni

so tired, that's why this one's going to be really short. you know i went to arles for the photo festival. one of the highlights was our visit to the parc des ateliers, a big industrial estate with old workshop buildings owned by the french rail corporation. within these old halls, a major part of the photography exhibitions were set up, featuring big names in photography (roni horn was presented with several works/installations) as well as new discoveries. the light in those halls was dramatic. here's a little peek behind the scenes. and hush, don't tell anyone i went into the wings, i don't think i was supposed too...  

oh, and don't forget: i'd still love to hear your thoughts on my camera question - keep them coming!

Monday, 10 August 2009

lemons, for instance

i need your help. 

see, these are lemons i shot on french markets - in normandy last year and this year in provence. one with my little digital, one with my trusty praktica. you can see which one is which, right? immediately, i mean. i do admit of course, that the comparison is slightly unfair, and i am biased. how is a compact digital to keep up with an analogue SLR? it's like comparing a crackly walkie-talkie exchange to a face-to-face conversation. kind of, anyway. so this is the thing i need your help with:

i am thinking about buying a digital SLR to keep my analogue SLR company. now, i realise there is a lot of nikon/canon loyalty issues out there. but i don't really want to buy into a club, i just don't mind. what i want is this, i think:

a camera that comes as close as possible to analogue photography (without breaking the bank, if that's possible) - say, allowing me to go all manual, to over- or underexpose to my heart's content and personal liking, doing muted, 'faded' colours, not only candy-coloured bright.

i'm not after gadgets - if i wanted to try my hand at filming, i'd rather get a decent camcorder, or a super 8 (or both...) than having a digital SLR that has an extra video function.

it would be neat to have a digital SLR that allows me to use vintage analogue lenses without much light loss and format issues.

perhaps you're starting to wonder why i want a digital SLR at all, since this all sounds as if i'd rather go out and buy a leica (i would if i could...). well, i'd like to explore both worlds (apart from the obvious reasons for having a decent digital camera: speed, availability and cost).

so if you have any thoughts on this, i'd really, really love to hear them. no matter if it's personal experiences or technical info - anything. drop me a comment right here or send me an email at twinklestar(at)gmx(dot)net

thank you so much!

Friday, 7 August 2009

happy accidents

sometimes you just walk down a street and there it is. a happy accident. arles, summer 2009.

thank you all for stopping by, it means a lot. and thank you, jen - your blog's a constant inspiration.

happy weekend!

digital love

i love my analogue vintage praktica camera. so much, in fact, that i recently thought i might have fallen completely out of love with my tiny digital camera. which is sad, since i owe it so much - mostly, a different way of seeing, and being such a patient teacher to me. looking through some pictures that i took with my digital in venice, i realise that there are still things i love very much about it and that i don't know yet how to achieve them with my analogue camera. that soft blurriness, that really is a side-effect of it being slow and not very good with low light, which lends those photos a slightly unworldly, poetic quality. and so i think i'm falling in love again. maybe it's like with our closest friends - we love them because they are so different. because of the many facets and because there is no such thing as perfection in one place, ever.

the first images taken inside the dutch pavilion. shadow and light and people moving within the installation spaces by fiona tan. then a shot taken at the arsenale, bird seed chandeliers by pae white and the feet of my friend jo. and finally a shot of an art work by valerio berruti in the italian pavilion at the arsenale, titled 'la figlia di isacco'. one of the works i saw in venice that moved me most. a little girl sitting on a chair, constantly moving around like children do - an animated film made from very simple and just plain magic drawings. even though the quality of the video i found is not great, PLEASE take a look. you won't be sorry. and here's a slide show of the 'making of', featured on berruti's website.

Wednesday, 5 August 2009

france: read the signs

i have to say: wednesday without corner view is somehow strange. don't you think?

so in lieu of our regular wednesday challenge, here are some more impressions from france. this time from arles. we went there to see the photo festival that takes place once a year. that evening though, we set off fairly late and arrived in arles at around five. too late really to start seeing the exhibitions, so we bought day tickets for the following day and wandered the streets, just taking in the light and atmosphere. here are some signs that caught my eye - such beautiful typography, wouldn't you agree? 

oh, and that last sign: go on, read it...

(too right, i'm off to buy some ice-cream now - see you later!)