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Posts tagged ‘Denmark’

Influencing Me – Vilhelm Hammershøi

For today’s post, I went through a lot of different things before deciding what to show.  I haven’t had a chance to find any WordPress photographers, and do have a successful photographer to show you next week, but it left me kind of high and dry this week.  I thought I could show you some paintings from the Renaissance Period, but it was looking more like a history lesson, I felt the same about looking at the history of Photography.  Then I remembered an artist that I have loved for quite some time, Vilhelm Hammershøi.


I was first introduced to his work by our technician at the VCA.  He brought in a book for me to look at on the artist.  Hammershøi was a Danish artist, and lived between 1864 and 1916 in Copenhagen.  He is most famous for interior paintings, many, I believe, painted in his home.

hammershoi4There is a quietness to them, and they seem so still.  It was a revelation, I think, for me at the time, because I felt my own work was very still and quiet, I worried that people would think my work was very boring.  It gave me hope seeing Hammershøi’s work, that perhaps it wasn’t a bad thing.

Interior-Strandgade 30Then there is the lone figure that sits or stands in many of his images.  Her back is nearly always turned to you.  I don’t know why she is always facing away, I don’t know that it matters, but it does add something really interesting to the images.  The woman was his wife Ida, and I thought perhaps she didn’t want her face painted.

idaThen I found this image of her, so I don’t really know why.  It is a great idea and I like how you don’t see her face in many of the images, it does add to the mysterious of the images.

interiorI also think that we often spend too much time on the face, and with these images, you are forced to look elsewhere as well, that the interior is just as important as the model in them, perhaps more so.

Landscape in the SnowAs I was looking for his work on the internet it was wonderful for me to discover that he did do other sorts of images and there are many landscape paintings and other paintings of streets and buildings, of both where he lived and where he traveled.

One of the things that I love about his work is how he loved to paint what he saw in front of him, or around him, his home.  I have spoken about other artists who have done the same, the other person who comes to mind is Margaret Olley, though Hammershøi paints of an uncluttered world, and a simple muted world in comparison.  I always think I should do the same in my own home, but my home is not suited. I need to do some painting, I painted my walls some very bright colours a few years ago, and I need to change them.

It seems appropriate to be doing a post on Hammershøi right now as I prepare for a week where I will be mainly stuck indoors trying to avoid the heat.  I have some more images for you to see and will put them in a gallery, after it I will add some links so if you would like to learn more about him you can.

Michael Palin has a small video that you can look at it if you would like to see Hammershøi’s Copenhagen, Michael Palin and the Mystery of Hammershoi.

Crowding Christmas

Today I have the first set of photos I took the other night when I was in the city.  The first place we went to was the Bourke Street Mall.  It was, as most of the city was, very crowded.  The windows in front of Myer were packed with people.

Bourke Street MallI wanted to get the lights that were over the top of the Mall.  I should explain that our Malls are not like other countries, this is a street that was closed off to cars many years ago, and now it is for pedestrians and trams.  The middle is always clear, you really don’t want to go one on one with a tram, you will lose.

It had just gone dark, and as you can see from the clock on the Myer building it was about ten to nine.  I was hoping the lights would show more, or stick out more, but they didn’t really.  It was a little disappointing,  but hopefully you get the idea of what it looked like.  The rain made it better, I have to admit that.  It made the ground very reflective which is nice.

I have processed this image in a much similar way to how I did the image of the window in the Hopetoun Tea Rooms.  I quite like the painterly effect it gives.  I actually like it quite a bit.  It did start as a 3 image HDR processed with Photomatix Pro and then additional processing done from there.

Bourke Street Mall with some FrostingWith this one, I have just added some frosting to it.  It is nice to see them both and compare whether the frosting works or not.  I am not so sure with this one.

I was up late last night to see if I could get some photos of our tree.  I tried a few things, but I really wasn’t happy.  The lights we have on it are not great.  I do have a couple though.

Christmas Ball and CandleThis is one of the glass Christmas balls we bought the first Christmas we had when our first daughter was born.  We were living in Denmark and we bought a lot of decorations from there.  Of course, we spent way too much money because we didn’t know where to buy things and ended up going to Georg Jensen where we spent a fortune.  Though we have lots of beautiful things that we will have forever.  The candle is in one of their gold candlesticks.

The Elf on the TreeI believe this guy and the others like him were all handmade.  They are so cute and so Christmassy.  I love them.  I have tried to find decorations which are as good and as nicely made here, but it is very hard.  Most of what we have seems to be junk.  Every now and then I find something I think is special and will buy it for the tree.

It is heating up here, the temperature is going to be 39 C or 102 F, perfect for Christmas shopping.  I am going to go into the city for you tomorrow and take some more photos.  Melbourne burning while enjoying Christmas.  Who knows what I am going to get.  At least I know I won’t need the tripod.

Richard Harrison found a video on YouTube of the lights on the town hall and I thought I would post it for you.


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