Ronald Jansen (@rjansen1967) is one of our absolute favorite landscape photographers. His captures showcase some of the best that nature has to offer - often leaving the viewer with an instant visual sensation of peace and quiet. He consistently uses Mextures to subtly enhance his beautiful shots - adding touches of light and color and employing the polishing tools to adjust basics like contrast and temperature. We caught up with Ronald in between business trips to chat about his work and style. Read on to learn more! I'm Ronald Jansen, 48-years-young, married and father of a beautiful daughter. I 'm living in a city called Enschede in The Netherlands. It's in the east side of the country near the German border and surrounded by beautiful nature. In my daily life I work as a salesman, selling document solutions to the higher educational market.
About 18 months ago I started with mobile photography and Instagram - an idea from my wife. I was looking for a hobby to escape my daily work. I started with my iPhone shooting pictures of nature and became hooked. Through Instagram I've met my buddy V (or @vincentcroce as most of you will know him). He introduced me to all kinds of awesome places in our countryside and that's when this hobby took off. When I have some time on my hands you can find me in our countryside or a forest shooting nature. Primarily during golden hour or in foggy conditions - the early mornings are my favorite. Just before sunrise when everything is quiet and you become one with nature. I'm still amazed by nature on every walk and I try to capture the beauty of it.
Last year I invested in a DSLR to bring my photography to another level and began trying out different techniques. In the search of creating my own style I tried dozens of photo editing apps until I ran into Mextures. Mextures gave me my own style - I try to pull viewers into my shots with minimal edits. I use it on every shot I post to Instagram.
My dream is to be a full-time photographer, making a living off of my photography. I'm currently looking into some courses to learn the basics of this fantastic hobby and understand all of the techniques.
Before you got in to photography did you enjoy nature?
Well, I wasn't a fanatic nature lover, but I try to spend as much time as I can in nature - just to relax and practice this hobby. Photography has taught me to look at things from a different angle and it has given me a greater appreciation for what nature has to offer - like this morning when I ran into some wild hogs. It puts a smile on my face and makes me very happy. I'm always exploring new areas and finding new places to shoot while playing with the natural light of the early morning.
What was it that caused you to get invested in using Instagram to share your photography?
Actually, my wife told me about Instagram. I've always used different kinds of social media platforms for work and for personal life. She told me about this mobile photography platform and said, “Maybe it's something for you now that you're starting with your photography hobby.” So I installed the app on my iPhone and iPad and that's the point where everything took off.
It started as a bit of fun - posting some daily life shots - but became more serious after a short while. I started following some people with the same interest in photographing nature. It gave me the ability to not only see other parts of the world but also the angles and techniques that other people use to capture the perfect moment. In fact, it helped me a lot with developing my photography skills and the way I view certain objects and surroundings. I became an instant fan of the platform and started building my own feed.
I'm learning every day from the people I follow. I love the instant feedback I get from my followers which gives me the drive to develop my work. Instagram became a part of life which I really enjoy and I've met some incredible people along the way.
What does your editing process typically look like?
My editing process is quite simple. When I get home from one of my trips I upload all my shots from my camera to my iMac. Then I'll select what I think are my best shots from the trip. Those I share in my iCloud and pick them up on my iPad. All of my editing is done on the iPad.
I have all types of editing tools, but in 99% of all cases I only use Mextures. Mextures helped me in developing my own style. My style is done with a minimal effect, leaving the shot in tact. But I always try to draw people into my shot. I have a dozen or so formulas which I use on my shots. Each formula was created from a standard set of layers I've selected. When I find the formula I like most, I start with the fine tuning proces and add/hide layers to get the final result. Of course, I also use the polishing tools for contrast, sharpness, etc. At the end I usually have around 5-10 layers adjusted to different opacity percentages.
Would you be willing to share a few of your formulas with the Mextures crowd?
Of course! Here are four:
Warm.Forest.Light - CXBXHYF - I use this on my 'chasing light' shots which I take in the early morning. The light can be harsh sometimes with a lot of contrast. This formula softens the light and gives it a warm spring feeling.
Dark Forest - IBMIIDM - People who are familiar with my feed have seen this one. I made this formula for a slight foggy shot of a cabin in the woods. The bluish effect gave this shot a creepy and cold effect.
Autumn - EEVVTUZ - This formula was created for a forest path during autumn. It creates depth in the shot by using several vignette type overlays and pulls the colors out with the contrast and temperature controls.
Autumn.Mist - IIYWJGR - This is a formula which I used on a foggy shot of a forest trail. It brings more light and color into the shot.
Do you feel like Mextures offers anything unique to your editing process?
As I’ve said, I feel like Mextures gives me the ability to create my own style. I've tried many other editing apps before but always felt like that style was similar to so many other people’s feeds.
In the beginning I thought working with Mextures might give my shots an over-edited look. I noticed so many artists who were working with Mextures were using it to create art with strong filters. That style works great for many people but it’s something I would like to avoid in my work. I think that is one of the unique selling points of Mextures - you can use it in so many different ways and for so many different editing styles. I needed a tool which could enrich my shots with minor changes - leaving the original capture as natural as possible. With Mextures, you can easily play with the lighting and color in a shot to really pull people in.
Who are the people who have inspired your work the most?
This is a tough one because there are so many people on Instagram and outside of Instagram that inspire me.
Of course my buddy V (@vincentcroce) is a person I really look up to. The guy has an amazing eye for what our region has to offer in terms of nature. He has introduced me to so many new and beautiful places which has given me the opportunity to build my own feed. I simply love his work and even his sense of humor.
Besides V, I'm a real fan of @bobbimac. He is a real genius when it comes to shooting nature.
See more of Ronald’s work here!