The CD-cover for the first album of Jeroen van Vliet's Moon Trio.

This page was made to share some additional information on the artwork for the first album cover of Jeroen van Vliet's Moon Trio, Earth - Time. There will be a CD presentation at Paradox, Tilburg, at 15:00 on October 9th 2016 Tickets here.
The album will be for sale two days earlier. Samples here, buy here.

Moon Trio's first album: Earth - Time. © Rens Horn 2016
The inside of Moon Trio's first album: Earth - Time. © Rens Horn 2016

Jeroen and I met in 2013 when he asked me to shoot his portrait for his solo-CD Wait. We agreed to meet in the Nederlands Fotomuseum in Rotterdam where I was giving a workshop earlier that day. I knew there was a beautiful concrete wall that, with the promised sunlight, would turn into a rythmic shadowplay.

Jeroen for his CD "Wait". The portrait on the left was used, the one on the right is an outtake. © Rens Horn 2013
Photographer Robert Adams called light "...a deeply mysterious compelling ingredient for your understanding of life and your response to it."
On december 14th 2014, Jeroen van Vliet was awarded the Buma Boy Edgarprijs for jazz and improvised music. The jury called him "one of the great poets of Dutch improvised music, a warm person who is faithful to beautiful tone" and found content, dimension and depth in this very tone.
While working with a number of great musicians over the years, Jeroen founded Moon Trio in 2015 with Cord Heineking on bass and Mark Schilders on drums. One of the features of the trio is the use of effects on the acoustic piano, as well as on the bass. It gives a different focus, another possibility for both the compositions and the improvisations. The music is about groove and beauty, the beauty of the acoustic piano-sound. The pieces are often simple, the music emotional and groovy.

Moon Trio (left to right): Cord Heineking, Jeroen van Vliet and Mark Schilders. © Rens Horn 2016

Jeroen asked me to photograph the trio for their first album "Earth - Time" and after talking about some ideas we agreed I would do not only the photography but also the artwork for the cover.

The photograph used for the front of the cover was made when the sun struck the sink in my studio as I was washing my analog (silvergelatine) prints. The bubbles on the surface broke the light in a beautiful way and it reminded me of what Carl Sagan said about imagination: "Imagination will often carry us to worlds that never were, but without it we go nowhere".


Worlds that never were.... © Rens Horn

I have always found it inspiring to look at the work of other photographers, but it is especially fascinating to study their contactsheets. You can see the way they work, the things they noticed, the before's and the after's, their effords, their doubts, all the necessary mistakes with the "keepers" sparingly inbetween. Working at the Nederlands Fotomuseum gives me acces to the contactsheets of one the finest Dutch photographers Ed van der Elsken (1925-1990). We study some of his beautiful contactsheets in my course on streetphotography. Unfortunately I'm not allowed to show some of those examples on this page but I will lecture about it at Kunstkring Doorn in february 2017. Maybe you're allowed to attend, I don't know whether it's private or not.

Ofcourse I find accidents on my own contactsheets too, like a pole in the background of jumping boys in Ulaan Baatar, the "figure-to-ground" relationship makes reading the picture problematic. But I liked the association between the boys and some of the titles on the album so I cut them loose from their environments and had them float in white space on the inside of the CD cover.

Contactsheet from my Mongolian journey. © Rens Horn 2000

One thing you should never do in an analog darkroom is to turn on the "white" light while your light sensitive paper is out of the light tight box or has not yet been fixated. Howerver, if you do, all kinds of effects can occur like solarisation and fogging. You never know exactly what's going to happen so you have to improvise. It's these uncertainties that I like to work with because, like the use of effects on the album, it gives a different focus and other possibilities to the visual experience.

The best district in Ulaan Baatar, Mongolia. © Rens Horn 2000
That same alienating effect was used for the Moon Trio portrait where it ampifies the trio's name.
Moon Trio. © Rens Horn 2016

Thank you for your interest. For questions or remarks you can contact me by email:
Good to hear from you!

Rens Horn, 2016.
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