ONCE

It had been in my wallet for about 20 years, this half decayed piece of paper. From the time that having a Filofax was still a must. It tells the story of the many conversations I had with my grandfather at the end of his life. Frisian of birth, a deep Frisian (deep frozen) as it is called, big and quiet. Not so in his last years. He told about his life, where he came from, the family. A family of peat cutters in Almenum, a village between Harlingen and Franeker, the municipality of Barradeel. "But all that doesn't exist anymore, seun. All demolished and removed." Still, I wrote it down, you never knew.

That ‘never’ was yesterday. Almenum now appears to have merged into Harlingen and has the status of a hamlet and the Koningskwartier is nowadays no more than an industrial area with some old workers' houses scattered here and there, close to the harbour. And despite the fact that no. 4 does not exist and that no. 104 now has a prefabricated production hall shining, it was still a special moment.

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Northern Lights Photography Masterclass - final session

Last weekend the last session of our Northern Lights Photography Masterclass 2017/2018 took place in Amsterdam. Again we had a great and inspiring 3 days with guest lecturers Arianna Rinaldo and Rebecca McClelland. Thanks to all my colleague participants for all the energy, good vibes, laughter, tears and respect. What a great loving and caring group we were! And, thank you Jim Casper, Lars Boering and Marc Prüst for all the wise words, the sharing of knowledge and coaching in these 9 months. It was sometimes truly difficult to keep up with it but it was absolutely well worth the effort! Wow! #northernlights #photography #masterclass #noorderlicht

  - Arianna Rinaldo and her lecture on editing, photo festivals and her own carreer.

- Arianna Rinaldo and her lecture on editing, photo festivals and her own carreer.

Northern Lights Photography Masterclass

I had a great review yesterday of my personal project HEIM (He secretly carried her picture). After a difficult start last year at the Northern Lights Photography Masterclass I am finally getting there! Very nice and encouraging words from Jim Casper (Lensculture) and if I can take his word for it: there's an exhibition in the making! 

  - Probably the final selection (for now, that is ...)

- Probably the final selection (for now, that is ...)

Portfolio book ready for presentation!

After months of extensive preparations, making dummies, having it reviewed several times and some wise words from some very wise people, it's finally there: my new portfolio book! Ready for presentation. I am so very happy with it! Don't hesitate to call or email me, I would be very happy to drop by and show you the book. 

  - The new portfolio book

- The new portfolio book

New office at Holland Park

Our new Amsterdam office is now fully operational at Holland Park as from today! Some decorating still has to be done but that will come eventually. For now, we're back in business again after our moving from Haarlem to Diemen Zuid (Amsterdam).

  - Our new office in the making.

- Our new office in the making.

Working on it! A portfolio book.

I've been thinking about it for years, but it never really came true. Now, following the Northern Lights Photography Masterclass I'm participating in, I'm finally going to do it: create a portfolio book. Ordered at Heiner Hauck's in Germany, this A3 landscape book with 30 sheets arrived at my home this week. I am now busy selecting images, editing and printing. It should be finished by the end of the year completely!

  - My new portfolio book: Rob Severein stories

- My new portfolio book: Rob Severein stories

The Northern Lights Photography Masterclass 2017 - Selected

I am very happy to announce that from many submissions and applications I was selected and invited to participate in the Northern Lights Photography Masterclass 2017 in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Applications came from various countries around the world, on four continents, but only 12 photographers were selected. The masterclass ‘Strategies for Developing Successful Visual Stories’ consists of three 3-day sessions over 9 months, dedicated to improving creative and business strategies for documentary photographers and headed by Lars Boering (managing director at World Press Photo), Marc Prüst (curator, creative director and photography consultant) and Jim Casper (editor-in-chief and co-founder, Lens Culture). It is a long-term masterclass for professional photo journalists, documentary photographers and visual storytellers. #photography #masterclass #northernlights

The Manhoff Archives. Rare footage from the Soviet era.

U.S. major Martin Manhoff spent more than two years in the Soviet Union in the early 1950s, serving as assistant army attaché at the U.S. Embassy, which was located just off Red Square at the beginning of his time in Moscow.

He took full advantage of his post, using his gifted photographic eye to capture hundreds of images of everyday life in Moscow and across the U.S.S.R.

When he left the country in 1954 amid accusations of espionage, Major Manhoff took with him reels of 16 millimeter film and hundreds of color slides and negatives he shot during his travels – including of one of the Soviet Union's pivotal events, Josef Stalin's funeral.

Watch this incredible footage on Radio Free Europe.

  All images taken by Martin Manhoff. Courtesy of Douglas Smith.

All images taken by Martin Manhoff. Courtesy of Douglas Smith.