In addition to the photography museums and films I shot in Amsterdam, I tried to take time to really explore and experience the city. On the second day we went out to see the windmills at Zaanse Schans. This was a lovely experience: the place is traditional unmodernised Dutch town. Many of the windmills were also in full operation. We visited a linseed mill, which produces the oil used in oil paints. It is nice to get out of the close confines of the city and see the country.
The Van Gogh museum was the highlight of my trip. Very busy and a long entry queue but as soon as you see the first pictures, it’s well worth the wait. Seeing paintings first-hand is so different to seeing them on computer screens as generally see hem while learning. There was an exhibition concerning the stolen Van Gogh paintings, with the originals on display. There was also an exhibition about prints of Paris in the 1900s, which was also very intriguing. Seeing ‘Wheat Field with Crows‘and some of his astounding self-portraits is an almost overwhelming experience. It’s great to be reminded that the form of his paintings we remember most represents but a small part of his output.
No trip to Amsterdam is complete without a river cruise along those spectacular canals, one of the best ways to see the city by far. Our river cruise was at night: the canals are beautifully lit, though proved difficult to capture. A fantastic way to round off they trip.