I admit it. I squirrel away photos like other people now do toilet paper. Though not just since Corona, but since ever. Interestingly however, it is that this little asshole of a virus led me to check out the numerous yellow Windows folders on my computer. Where photos of night expeditions to the stars, sunrises in deserts, and snow-covered mountains were just languishing. Images for which I traveled far and wide, got up awfully early in the morning, scratched my knee, and shivered with fear so great that I sprouted three new gray hairs.
An American friend shakes his head about us Germans. “In the midst of the Corona virus, all sorts of artists and self-employed people are going online with their creations.” I can almost see his hotdog falling out of his bun as he vigorously shakes his head. “And what are you doing?” He continues. “You Germans are thinking: Oh no! I can’t do that! That is too blatant!”
As I picture him picking up the mustard and fries from the floor, I begin to think of all the photographs sitting rotting
in my Windows-hell. So I decide to take a quick look at what I have collected. I begin to think of an online gallery and I say to myself, “Yes! I can do that.” So after almost three weeks of
ten-hour shifts, it is done. So now I can present my little showroom of wonderful moments and places for you to look
at, book for an exhibition in your cafe or art place or to purchase as a print.
When I first wrote this article it was spring 2020 and the pandemic was at its first big peak. Here are the thoughts and feelings I had back then:
I am a self-employed creative professional and none of the support from the government applies to my status. Luckily, I do still have a few clients who need work done and I still can afford a box of pasta (now that there is pasta back on the shelf! YAY!). But you are not exactly in high demand right now if you are working as a writer and photographer in the tourism and culture industry. Those industries are dead. Stone-dead. Apart from writing an epitaph, there is not much I can do. Spiritus Sanctus and Holy Cow.
So now I have plenty of time, because along with my job, my travel plans all died at the same time. But time for what? With the current time it is almost like with the current fuel: it is cheaper than it was since the birth of Christ, but you can’t use it to go anywhere because everything is locked down. It is like I got a note from the Department of Destiny at The Daily Show: very funny, laughing later.
I definitely do not belong to the Corona-Stay-Home creatives: I have no desire to learn Portuguese or to bake bread—and for almost 30 years, I’ve considered indoor sports to be pretty shitty. Nor is simply lying around getting fat by eating chips and staring at Netflix on my list of things to do.
So, motivated by my hotdog-eating American acquaintance, I decided
to work on this big project: my own little online art studio where I am
showing and offering prints of some of the most beautiful photos that I have taken on my many trips in recent years.
The collection includes places far from civilization, and some in the middle of civilization as well; there are glowing mountains, roaring geysers, moss-covered temples, glittering metropolises, and golden sunsets by the sea.
If you are interested in not just looking at them online but also having them at home as a print, you can shoot me a message via e-mail, Instagram or Facebook. I have numerous options for prints (size and material) availabe and I am sure we will figure something out.
I worked on creating this little shop longer than a miner in Siberia hunts for a piece of coal. I have always wanted to do this but had never had the time – or courage. But even though the Corona virus has given me the time to create it, it is not a pop-up store that will disappear after the crisis.
In fact, it is still there and now a permanent part of the blog so I will always be able to offer to share a bit of wanderlust or adventure with frequent updates from my latest trips.
Corona is not the first thing that has tried to sprinkle salt on the chocolate cake of my life – and I am pretty sure it has done that to everyone in the world. The bottom line is that we should never stop looking and trying new things. That we don’t just sit in a hole, close the shutters, and then wallpaper the room with toilet paper.
Is that fun? No, it is hard work. Or to quote a friend who had to work from home with two small children during the pandemic, “I could just throw up every other day.” But since wiping the floor afterwards is such a mess, it is nice to complete a heartfelt project instead.