Andre Struik is a Dutch artist specializing in architectural and landscape black and white photography. We discuss with him life, art and creative process. Thank you for this interview Andre.
Briefly tell us about yourself, Andre.
I am a photographer based in the Netherlands.
My work focuses mainly on architecture and landscape black and white photography.
To me, photography is an art form and more than freezing the instant. I capture the moments and translate that to my images.
Besides photography I like to travel, go out, enjoy nature and play music.
My motto in life is “live as if you were to die tomorrow, remember yesterday, think of tomorrow and learn as if you were to live forever!”
I will be forever grateful to and full of respect for my wife, who gave me a kidney in October 2015. For me, this a life in gifted time.
Why are you interested in B/W photography?
I cannot give a clear answer to this. I always preferred black and white, not only in photography. It might be that things become close to their essence and without distractions. It is difficult to explain it in words, but I guess I can express myself better in black and white.
Do your images have a story behind? Do they have a special meaning to you or do you look for technical perfection?
In general, my images do not have a story behind or a special meaning to me. I often think about how to approach a subject and how I can make an image as I think that it should be. I always try to create the result that I have in mind before taking the photograph. Often, technical perfection is one of the things that contribute.
I believe that you carefully prepare the locations that you plan to photograph. If this is the case, can you describe the steps to achieve your goals?
It strongly depends on what I have in mind. I often do preparation to create an image that I have in mind. Things to be taken into account differ from image to image. I mostly scout the location in advance, checking for obstructed view, accessibility, weather conditions, light, time, tides, gear and more. For me, there is a specific preparation required to create images following my vision.
What goes through your mind during a shoot? What inspires you?
Mostly I have no inspiration during a planned shoot, because I have a goal that is the only thing where my focus is at that time. However, sometimes there are possibilities due to changing conditions, other angles and more, which bring new ideas.
What is your favourite work and why?
My favourite work is The Eye. It is one of my first long exposures. I enjoyed working on this image very much. The fact that I managed to isolate a subject in a crowded area and create something that becomes this kind of art gives me a certain satisfaction.
Do you have any favourite equipment/gear/software to achieve your final result?
It depends on what the subject is. When photographing architecture or certain landscapes, I like my tilt shift lens very much. In general, I like my lightweight tripod, ball head and leveller. I also love everything I use for long exposure photography, like ND filters and a lot more. And, of course, my camera. My favourite software is Photoshop.
Is there any future project that you are working on?
I currently am not working on any project. I always see how things go and develop at the moment. I do not plan too much in advance.
Do you have any photographer(s) that you admire?
I do not have any photographers that I admire. There are a lot of great photographers and beautiful photographic art. There are certainly many artists that have my interest and have inspired me at different levels.
What is next for Andre Struik?
I have to see how things go. As I have said, I do not plan too much in advance and prefer to take things as they come.