Auschwitz II, Birkenau

Auschwitz I was kind a small compared to Auschwitz II, Birkenau. It wasn’t until we visited Birkenau, I really saw how massive this was. The camp was HUGE. Many buildings in the camp was destroyed by the Nazi’s when the war ended. They wanted to destroy as many evidence as possible. All of the gas chambers and crematoriums at the Birkenau camp were destroyed. Many of the barracks too. Left was only the brick pipes of the barracks.

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In my next post, I’m coming up with some more cheerfull photos of Poland. I had a whole sunday in the city of Krakow where I explored the old town. Stay tuned!

Auschwitz: a visit to the concentration and death camp

On saturday I went on a four-day trip to Kraków, Poland with the office where I work and a lots of new colleagues. A few days before we went, we got an email saying that we were going to visit the concentration camp / death camp Auschwitz. I don’t know what words to use for it not sound wrong. Saying that I was happy that we were going, sounds so weird, but I must admit that for quite some time I’ve wanted to go to Auschwitz. I’ve been thinking it would’ve been a very interesting place to visit, but I never thought that I’d get the chance to go there. You just don’t book your holiday to Auschwitz… So when got that email telling that we were going, I was somewhat excited in a weird way.

Auschwitz is such a massive monument in the world’s history. It is something so big, it’s very hard to grasp. You can’t really understand it, at least not me. I know what happened. I know about all the cruelty and all the horror that happened there, but still… it’s hard to grasp the extent of it all.

Being there, I thought it would be way more emotional that it was. I didn’t cry my eyes out like I thought might happen. I think that I unintentionally put up a wall, to distance myself a bit from it. Even with the invisible wall, I didn’t turn into a stone face. There were several times when I were teary eyed and got the chills. That happened when I saw pictures of frightened kids and kids clothes. They had also taken care of all the hair they shaved of the people in the camp. It was so much hair! We also went into one of the gass chambers, well the only one left on the camp. You could see the scratches on the wall and the oven they burned the bodies in. That was aweful to look at.

We were allowed to photograph everywhere, expect in one of the blocks where they human hair was located. I took a lot of photos, but there were things I didn’t have the  heart to photograph. All the belongings they’ve taken care of (shoes, glasses, suitcases with names on etc) were left unphotographed. So was the gas chamber and the tiny standing cells where several people were put and often were sufficated.

I knew from the beginning that these photos needed the black/white treatment. No colors could do this place justice. The whole place was too drepressing.

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Hazy black & white lines and more

I was out on a photo trip a while ago. Only half of the photos I took were processed and posted here. Now I finally got around to process the second half. Since I loved the hazy black and white look my previous photos, I decided to give these the same treatment.

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Im off to Krakow this saturday with my co-workers. Hopefully I will be able to take some photos while I’m there. Maybe my next post will show lots of lovely photos from Krakow?

Stay tuned!

The return of a ghost

I said in my last post that I hoped I slowly would blog more often. That didn’t work out as I planned. What happened? Work exploded in my face so to say. From working two or three hours overtime a year, I had two weeks where I worked two – three hours of overtime each day! I even worked six hours last sunday. That has happened once before the elleven years I’ve worked with this company. When I’ve come home from work, I’ve been so tired that all I managed to do was to make dinner and watch a little bit of TV. For some working around the clock is normal and enjoyable, but I know now that it’s certainly not for me. There are people that has it like this all the time and think it’s ok. I don’t. I love my job, but not that much.

In addition to working my ass off, I had two days of Springsteen mania going on. Springsteen and the E Street band kicked off their second leg of the Wrecking Ball tour in Oslo. Two concerts. For those who know me, knows that I’m a huge Springsteen fan. I went to both conerts and had a blast both times. I got to hear songs I’ve never heard live before (like Better Days, Leaf of Faith, Downbound Train, Saving up) and that is always fun! Two nights of rock ‘n roll, took it’s toll on me.

I’m slowly getting back to where I was three weeks ago. Energy is regained and head can once again be filled with something else than just work.

I did manage to get on a photowalk a eight days ago, but I haven’t had time to process them. I looked at them shortly earlier today, but it was too much to go through. So instead I dug out my wide-angle lens that I haven’t used in a long time and took some photos from the balcony and a few haning out the window of my kitchen & bedroom.

While thinking of blogging, I listened to Springsteen and he sang about ‘the edge of town’. That made me want to post some black and white photos. For a long time now, I’ve been wondering how to get my photos a ‘hazy black and white’ look. It turned out not to be as difficult as I had thought. A few adjustments while post processing them and voilá. I got the result I was looking for.

I really want to do more black and white stuff. Maybe that’s gonna be the goal for May?

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