Every month, we ask one of our (international) students in The Hague to write about their experience living and studying in the city. This month, we handed over the -not-so-literal- pen to Martin Fox, a LUC student with raw talent for photography. Read here how he sees The Hague through his personal lens:
THE HAGUE, THE NETHERLANDS – It was cold, so very very cold.
And this is coming from someone who lived 4 years in Austria. Even when I lived in Vienna, I had never been this cold. It was 9:30 am and I felt like the wind was purposely targeting me, as I swore every minute I was outside, complaining about the cold (it’s the Aussie in me). It wasn’t the fact that it was -6 outside that hurt, it was the wind that killed.
Anyhow, the reason I was out so early was that I had to take photos for an Urbanism class I’m currently taking: students in the class have to go through The Hague and take photos of the city that represent concepts taught in class (globalization, politics, citizenship etc.).
By the way, for any Leiden University students reading this, I 10/10 recommend taking Dr. Hinman’s course Urban Studies, you’ll love every minute of it.
So at 9 am, armed with nothing but a thick Scottish coat and my Canon DSLR camera, I set out from my apartment, near Centraal Station, heading towards the city center and Noordeinde. Also, I wanted to take photos of Spui as well, as even though it was freezing, the sun was shining, and against the white tiles of Spui, in my mind that was a perfect combination.
So after passing by Spui and Binnenhof, taking a few photos along the way, on my right, I reached Hofvijver.
When I saw it, the feelings I had were indescribable.
It was like I was 5 again and I got the toy I’d always wanted for my birthday.
It was a photographers DREAM.
All the elements came together to set up a perfect shot: the lighting was perfect, the sun was in the best spot (behind Binnenhof) and most importantly, Hofvijver was frozen AND snowed over.
And it was unbroken as well !!!!
It looked like a cloud: the snow and the ice hadn’t been struck by anything thick enough to break it so it was consistent all throughout, making it perfect for photos. The only part where the ice was broken was on the far right corner, opposite the Mauritshuis.
I whipped out my camera and started taking photos from all angles, playing with the sun, shadows and the lighting. I took photos of the flags, the binnehof and everything that my camera could handle. I walked around the Hofvijver, taking as many photos as I could.
For a moment, whilst taking the pictures and in complete awe of the situation that was in front of me, I had forgotten about the cold … then my frozen nose reminded me.
After walking around all around Hofvijver and taking hundreds of shots, I walked back to my uni building, selected the photos and edited them on VSCO and produced some wonderful results.
I was so happy with the photos that were produced.
If you want to see them, check them out on: