My name is Ruud van Ruitenbeek and no, that is not my eye! I am a self taught photographer from the Netherlands. Photography is my way of focussing my creativity. I was taught the basics of photography by my father at the age of 12 and have been taking photographs ever since. My father taught me some rules regarding composition, the one I remember best is “always have something in the foreground of a landscape that gives the viewer a sense of proportion.” I have since then learned that great images are sometimes created by breaking the rules! Don’t be afraid of doing that.
My workflow now is completely digital. I sometimes miss the feeling of excitement and anticipation of watching an image slowly appear on the paper floating in the developer tray, but I am totally converted, in all senses of the word, to the digital format. The amount of control I now have over an image allows me to produce images that were not possible before. Another important advantage is not having to spend a lot of money on buying films and having them developed.
I like images that tell a story. The most interesting ones, I find, are those that can tell many stories at the same time. Some of these stories can be true, but none need to be. I want to invite the viewer to think about my images, wander into them, and make up their own stories. As can be seen from my work, I also like symmetry and rhythm in pictures. With my photography I try to surprise; to engage the viewer and make them see beauty where it is not expected.
Travelling is another of my passions. It helps me to find new subject material. I was in the fortunate position of being able to travel for work and was able to combine business trips with my love of photography. So, in addition to the North West of England, where I made my home about in 1992, I have seen a few bits of the world. Fortunately there is a lot more to explore. Being able to observe and participate in other cultures (something I had to do after moving to the UK as well!) gives me a useful perspective on what could easily be dismissed by some as just ‘strange’ or even ‘inferior’.
I hope you enjoy my work and would welcome your feedback. You can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.