In the collection of Stedelijk museum Amsterdam is a work of Edward Kienholz, the Beanery (1965). It has influenced many youngsters their opinion on bars forever. At young age I could sit there for a while in the fading scent of beer, listening to a murmling radio surrounded by fellow guests with clocks as head. It changed my vision on any cafés and made the atmosphere around the bar more important than the spirit in the bottles behind it. A few scenes I have sketched with ink and paper. Decades later the digital photography opened up the possibility to experiment with snapshots in dark environment. Somehow those photo's never seemed to catch the ambiance of a location. Maybe some subjects are better left to ink and paper technique while others are better framed in a photo?
These café photos - are a study to see how far my thesis about pen versus camera held. To register the ambiance without disrupting the mood I used the bellow camera (1923) of my grandfather and used exposure times just long enough to show difference between people with and without motion. Dusk was choosen as photo moment to balance indoor and outdoor light. Additional a handheld flash gave the bar an extra touch of light.