• Mdr_02
    Federispitz, 2009
  • Mdr_03

    Fire River, 2008

  • Mdr_04

    Godyns Punt, 2011

  • Mdr_05

    Lindenheuvel, 2009

  • Mdr_06

    Matouwacs, 2009

  • Mdr_07

    Ivguvuovdi, 2011

  • Mdr_08

    Moon, 2011

Photography

Misha de Ridder

Posted by Alex Moshakis,

If Misha de Ridder finds a place he wants to shoot, but the light’s not quite right, he’ll wait. “I visit again and again,” the photographer says, “until suddenly it’s right – the light, the atmosphere – and a rush of excitement overtakes me.” Landscapes – “the lay of the land, the weather, the changing of the seasons” – have always fascinated the Dutch photographer, who’s spent his career to date on the hunt for fresh perspectives. Here we talk location tracking, the shifting nature of light, and something called “unreal reality”…

What prompts you into taking a picture?

The actual moment – having set up my large format field camera (which is quite an effort!) – is very much determined by light. But of course the whole process is intuitive.

There is this instance I call unreal reality – that’s what I’m looking for in the landscape. Natural phenomena can become so estranged and mysterious that we’re inclined to describe them as unreal realities. It might be the extraordinary shape of a tree, a mountain, a shadow or reflections mirrored in a lake… Most importantly, it is the unfamiliarity of the natural aesthetics of reality.

In waiting rooms around the world, banal landscape photography adorns white-washed walls. How do you make work that stands out from the imagery that surrounds us?

Landscape, especially the natural landscape, is an infinite subject. One can always say something new about landscape and nature. And one should.

In my work I try to play with different cultural (and sometimes banal) references to create new meaning. With all of this tradition, and with all of this ubiquitous landscape imagery that floods our senses daily, what better challenge is there than to photograph a sunset anew? It might not even be a challenge – it is a task.

You also create video works. What does moving image allow you to do that stills don’t?

Nature is constantly changing. When the light changes, the mood changes. Shadows move. When mist dissolves, the landscape slowly regains its shape. By making very minimal movies these subtle changes intensify and become perceptible. The major difference between working with still images and video is that with video your subject needs to be in the process of transformation. When making photographs, this isn’t necessary.

How do you find the places you document?

It starts with maps. By studying maps I intuitively choose places to go I think might be interesting. Sometimes I use Google Earth; a Swiss Lake in Abendsonne I found this way.

When abroad, work is intense because time and means are limited. Mostly I camp out in the landscape, to be able to experience the different changes in light and weather. I trek through the landscape by foot, with everything in a back-pack and a large tripod on my shoulder.

Portrait8

Posted by Alex Moshakis

Alex originally joined It’s Nice That as a designer but moved into editorial and oversaw the It’s Nice That magazine from Issue Six (July 2011) to Issue Eight (March 2012) before moving on that summer.

Most Recent: Photography View Archive

  1. List

    For an image maker whose craft relies on capturing light to take all of his photographs by moonlight might seem a little impertinent, but Alejandro Chaskielberg doesn’t seem to care about following any preconceived ideas. The Buenos Aires-born photographer has fully replaced lighting equipment with the natural environment by taking images by the light of the full moon. His technique comes as a breath of fresh air to those familiar with photographic projects which aim to muster sympathy for subjects living in underprivileged areas; this is something else else entirely.

  2. List

    Belgian photographer Wouter Van de Voorde started out as a painter in his homeland before discovering that photography offered him more of the creative freedom and opportunity for introspection than his original medium. Since taking up photography he’s exiled himself to Autralia where he uses his outsider status as a driver for creative expression, exploring the quirks and nuances of Australian culture and landscape in the hope of creating a sense of belonging through his work.

  3. List-2

    I’m sure there are plenty of documentary photographers for whom going to Brazil to capture the World Cup would be something of a dream, but as far as I’m concerned none of them even come close to the exceptional Jane Stockdale. After having her application to photograph the crowds watching the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow turned down three times, she decided to take matters into her own hands, and jumped on a plane to Brazil to shoot audiences there instead.

  4. List

    Colombian-born, Spanish-based photographer Manuel Vazquez was an economics student before he decided to make his living from image-making. A quick transfer to Spain, some courses at New York’s School of Visual Arts and a Masters in Photography and Urban Cultures at Golsmiths later and he’s quite the photographic talent. The economy’s loss is photography’s gain. Now he shoots regularly for the likes of The Guardian, The Times, The Sunday Times and The British Journal of Photography predominantly taking slick portraits.

  5. Main

    You don’t get much better than an award-winning National Geographic photographer, unless of course it’s one that spends most of his time underwater snapping away at enormous whales. Parts of this series make me want to cry, others make me want to jump for joy at the wonders of nature, but mostly they make me want to shit my pants with terror. Imagine being underwater, where man is not supposed to dwell, and being in the company of a prehistoric beast with a mouth as big as a 4×4, imagine how scared you’d be. One flip of its tail could probably shatter your legs. Anyway, the point here really is that one-time Photographer of the Year Brian Skerry is not only excellent at being brave in the presence of beasts, he’s also a superb photographer with composition skills and a knack of capturing wildlife with a flair that evokes raw emotion in you. Don’’t forget to check out his sharks series. If you dare.

  6. Main9

    Thomas Rousset and Raphaël Verona’s Waska Tatay is fairly ambiguous at first glance. The cover is a simple yellow-to-blue fade with the title placed inconspicuously on the spine; but the content is altogether more arresting. Using a mixture of reportage and staged portraiture the photo book documents the pair’s trip to the Altiplano region of Bolivia and their encounters with witch doctors, spiritual healers and medicine men; uncovering the rites and rituals of these ancient orders and illuminating some of their extraordinary mythologies.

  7. List

    Every year thousands of gloomy-looking characters descend on Whitby, a British seaside town that’s steeped in folklore and literary heritage. Bram Stoker set parts of Dracula there, Robin Jarvis created a mysterious series of children’s books on its streets and a ruined abbey stands at the top of one of its cliffs, maintaining a physical, eerie presence on moonlit nights – and those goths just can’t get enough.They host an annual goth weekend which this year photographer Annie Collinge decided to document, stopping the black-clad revellers on the streets and in graveyards to pose for her potraits. The resulting images offer a fantastic snapshot of one of the most longstanding genres of alternative culture, though I say that with bias, as I used to be one. “Listen to them, the children of the night. What music they make!”

  8. Main9

    I hope everyone got involved in a mosh pit at some stage during their adolescence, it’s a rite of passage as important as – if not moreso than – your first kiss. Fun and life-changing as it is, cool it is not, and so this strange, sweaty, somewhat folkloric activity tends not to be photographed in favour of adult versions of something similar at grown-up festivals and the like. Good on Emily Stein, then, for having the balls to just dive in with those sweating teenagers and take photos of them at their wildest and most passionate. Some photos are close-up enough that you can even see their faint beginnings of wispy facial hair. Wonderful stuff.

  9. List-3

    There are fashion photographers, and then there are fashion photographers who have pioneered the very definition of the genre, branching out and experimenting where others wouldn’t even dare to tread and doing so 20 odd years before their time. Hans Feurer is such a one. Born in Switzerland in 1939, he worked as a graphic designer, illustrator and art director before deciding to take up photography during a trip to Africa.

  10. Main

    Harley Weir’s strikingly organic compositions seem to be made out of the same colour and textures as an Egon Schiele painting. Her photographs are mysterious and unguarded, and there is something very personal and pure about the way that she captures her subjects.

  11. Main1

    In Matt Sweeney’s bio he refers to himself as “mudstone” with regards to the rock’s porous, disruptive nature. His photographs, predominantly street photography taken in downtown Hollywood, are shot through a wide angle lens on cinematic Kodachrome film between 1979 and 1983 and have the voyeuristic quality and timing of Diane Arbus mixed with the curiosity of Vivian Maier. His other projects, such as this series about a man who’s kind to cats are equally as arresting, and take us on a journey into hot, dusty, unpredictable and somewhat chaotic America – a visual feast perfect for a boring Monday morning.

  12. List

    In my opinion there are no photographers who walk the tightrope between the mediocre and the exceptional so expertly as Dutch photographers Anuschka Blommers & Niels Schumm. A previous project for Baron magazine saw them charge everyday images from lightbulbs and IKEA lamps to book spines and sheets of paper with such eroticism that it was hard to look without blushing. Their most recent project for that same title, Baron, which Nowness aptly describes as lying “at the intersection of art and pornography,” follows in the same vein.

  13. Listt

    Your garbage says so much about you. Going through a week’s worth of a person’s trash, you can learn what they like to eat, what they wear, the things that they want to keep hidden, their secrets, their desires. We don’t think about what our garbage says about us, and when we throw it away, we forget about it entirely. We live in a society that produces such a monstrously entropic overload of garbage, and it is easy to distance ourselves from the big idea of global pollution.