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Mark Zuiderveld, Beijing, China

Please introduce yourself to our readers:

I'm Mark Zuiderveld, originally from Jacksonville, Illinois‐‐the land of Lincoln.

How and when did you get into photography?

I've been into photography since my late high school years, when I took a class in black and white 35mm film photography. We used the chemicals in the darkroom, and that interest in being in dark areas was always fascinating to me. I also love watching films, and going to other places and states of mind always took place in the dark.

You use a lot of different films but your style is always coming through, how important is the look of the film for you?

I don't often think about the look of the film that I'm shooting on. I'm lucky to get any image out at all when I get it back from the lab. Sometimes you get boring photos, others are gems.

Asia must be very inspiring, do you believe your approach of photography would be different in for instance Europe?

I think Europe would be a fascinating place to photograph, much different from East Asia. But one facet of my photography is to shoot walls of streets and hutongs, so in Europe I'd be doing the same thing‐‐photographing unique exteriors you wouldn't find in other countries. Locations are important‐‐they can be inspiring for telling stories, be it in cinema or literature. I'm interested in traveling to more Asian and southeast Asian countries, even North Korea, but it's too dangerous to travel there. Hong Kong and Macau are probably my favorite places to take photos‐‐the neon lights and beaches are photogenic. I've shot some portraits of people, and need to do this more often.

Is there anything, anybody or anyplace left on your bucket list you have to take a picture from? 

I'm interested in traveling to more Asian and southeast Asian countries, even North Korea, but it's too dangerous to travel there. Hong Kong and Macau are probably my favorite places to take photos‐‐the neon lights and beaches are photogenic. I've shot some portraits of people, and need to do this more often.

And last but not least, is there anything you want the world to know?

I think it's important to be stress‐free when taking photos. Often I feel I need to shoot everything out of necessity, and this makes me feel exhausted. Of course it's impossible to shoot everything, but waiting for the exact moment to take a photo is an important event for the photographer, even if it doesn't mean anything to the viewer. I like the spontaneity of photography‐‐how unrehearsed it is. For a while I was using the Colorsplash camera by Lomography, and this camera gives unpredictable looks to your photos, even purposefully blurry images. I think this goes beyond photography and into art‐‐kind of dream that manifests itself.

Where can we see more of your photographs?

You can find most of my photos on Instagram: @markzandre 

Mark´s works:


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