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APRIL 19, 2023


At the end of last summer, I had time to spend before university started again. Where I had felt the need to travel a couple months earlier, I now just wanted a calm getaway to rest, reflect and restore. My good friend Anna is the perfect travel companion for those kinds of vacations, and we decided for Rügen, an island in Germany's part of the Baltic Sea. Rügen is large, and a popular destination for Germans, but we hoped we would find enough secluded spots to ourselves. So, we hopped in the car and off we went.


Rügen is an unusual island in the sense that you don't need a ferry to get there. There is a bridge. That is very symptomatic for the entire experience - it never feels like you're on an island, it's just being at the coast. Even that is confusing, though - Rügen is famous for its beech forests, and they fall directly into the sea. That is incredibly cool, but also not what one is used to. The lack of island feel didn't diminish the experience, it's just not what we expected.


I had just purchased quite a few rolls of film, and as this year is almost purely non-digital, I brought a host of them with me. I hoped for good light on spectacular cliffs, sandy beaches, and magic forests -  as I usually do. And as per usual, I got disappointed by those unrealistic expectations. The light was mostly bad, and - with the exception of one sunrise at our favorite beach, and a few minutes of pre-thunderstorm light along a coastal trail - did not inspire spending a roll of film. However, I got rescued - by Anna.


Anna was consistently the most interesting subject, and the otherwise bland scenes came to life once she entered them. The week morphed from taking photos of Rügen to taking photos of Anna on Rügen, and I think I prefer that in hindsight. So, that's what this is. Plain and simple, my friend Anna on Rügen. I hope you like it.

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