Change is the constant, and it’s slow


A Chinese city, rumors about wet markets, disgusting pictures of unfortunate animals in small cages. Stories about an elite eating wild animals of any species simply because they can afford it.
But it was far away, none of our problems. Change was not visible yet.

Do you remember those bright days in February?

Winter was nearly over, the promise of a new year, first signs of spring in the air.
Oh yes, the spring came – and how it came. Lockdowns, panic shopping, masks and malaria treatments. The world changed faster than ever in my lifetime. It felt like the globe spun two times faster every day.

Do you remember the slowing?

Spring came, masks went up and down, politicians forth and back, suddenly everything came to a halt. Staying at home became normal, the outside a dangerous wasteland – and I changed.
First slowly, not recognizable. It needed a while to realize that this is here to stay. And the changes will be permanent.

Do you remember summer?

Yes, there was a summer. It was warm, it was beautiful. And dry. California burned down, somewhere in the distance. Separated through a screen, a thin layer of glass, the world passed by.
The tonality of the discourse got hysterical. I drifted off, stopped trying to understand.
What for? Do I really want to understand every single utter madness people say?
I tried it for 50 years, obviously without any result.

I started to see. My colours. And my way into art again.
Started to see how I will get through and out of these situations, this clamp Corona had put on my brain.
It’s about change, constant change. As the plague changed the world in its days, Covid will do the same. It’s inevitable, it’s nature itself. We may can destroy our environment, but we can’t control nature.

Change is the constant, and it’s slow

Only a close look makes it visible, except of those rare times like the one we’re living in.

These slow changes I wanted to visualize.
Movement nearly frozen, slowed down to the edge of visibility.
Change so slow that it nearly hurts to watch,
a dance of fading and reappearing
transformation of shapes
reformation of structures.

I wanted to find the moment change happens
the moment autumn kisses summer goodbye
I guess I found it
for a moment in time

Six months and a day at home – my totally subjective Corona resume


Oh, my esteemed audience, I almost forgot a typical 2020 anniversary in the sound of the sirens. Or rather in the non-sound. For me at least nothing was crying except maybe a couple of tin foil hats about the once again unusual doomsday. For those living outside the realm of spuds and krauts: there was a national emergency test scheduled for yesterday. Epic failure. So much about the idea to install a New World Order – we’re not even capable of testing a few sirens.

But now for the anniversary: ​​I am at home for six months and one day, half the year has just been filled. And no end in sight. If I may invite you on the trip we’re all on. Somehow together and yet everyone for himself. For me time for a Corona resume.

Maybe a week, I thought in early March. A suspected case in a very wide area, no drama, but caution is the mother of the porcelain box and anyway, one doesn’t know for sure.

No, I did not know anything. None of that that came.

At the beginning there is great motivation. A lot planned, only some of it actually done.

Morning sport with VR glasses and finally a walk, real breakfast, no subway.

The weeks are dragging on

And unfortunately, also the dark clouds.

My father’s 80th. Failed, quarantine.
Company broke, job gone.
My window to the world becomes – even more so – the monitor. While retreat is becoming the norm for me, the pandemic fuels the parade of the brain-dead in their strange lust for doom. The scraps of news seem more bizarre every day. People fight over toilet paper. Press conferences, statements, the final triumph of streaming.

Tables, statistics, R-values, K-values, curves up and curves down.
My temperature curve is rising. Fortunately, only the virtual one.
Hearse wagons in Italy, ambulances at the door.
Burning cities in the USA, burning forests in the Amazon, in Australia the remains are glowing.

I become passive, watching becomes increasingly masochistic. But at least I take it off.

Söder mutates from baffoon to doer, Drosten to meme, the numbers and charts begin to overlap, to blur. Daily change at the top of the new infections, a tour-de-madness.

Bars closed, bars open. Clubs closed, beer gardens open. Businesses closed, businesses open.
Masks down, masks up.

The “outside” suddenly seem threatening to me. Strange. The throat is scratching.

I have to get out of this loop. Now. Immediately.

The claustrophobia of my world, which has shrunk to a few square meters, is the key.
Only when everything condenses is the path to opening possible.
So I get out. In the evening. With distance.
I am starting to see again. To observe. Perceive.
To experience my city with fresh eyes.
It seems to me that I needed this distance to regain closeness.

And I learn. In these six months I have learned more than five or 10 years ago.

Photography rediscovered for me, video, sound. I am writing again for the sake of writing.
Homepages set up, YouTube channel started.
Yes, a lot is a quarter done and half started.

But I can’t get any further without doing it – and it’s a pleasure, a lot of fun.

My batteries are charging again, barely noticeably at first, but at some point, I realize that I have more energy than I thought I could have again.

My life has changed a lot more in the last few months than I expected. I think most of them do. The pandemic is real, even if it doesn’t taste or smell. The mask in the pocket has quickly become a matter of course. Thinking about who to meet where, too. Wasn’t he only Spain, doesn’t she have an awful lot of colleagues in the office? Meet in things? Oh no, don’t be angry with me, but the tables are very narrow.

Is that the “New Reality”?

Bullshit – as if there had ever been an “Old Reality”.
We live in the here and now, there is no going back to virtual normality.
And as long as there are crazy people who want to go back to the empire and, better still, to go straight to the cave, I don’t have the slightest interest in it.
During the last few weeks, I have realized that there will be no going back to the start.
Much is lost, including much that is important to me. Many questions, few answers.

Will we ever have nights again, sweating, and happy in tight clubs? Barely.
Will we ever again walk through crowds of people completely inexperienced, get on crowded subways without hesitation? Rather not.
At least not me.

Back to cruises, consultants flying around and across and a world where home office is still an excuse for doing laundry? Back to a world that was completely out of joint even without Corona? Definitely not.
Not with me. There must be something else, something between unrestrained consumption as an end in itself and inhibited crawling at home.

And I want to find that, whatever it is.

Corona definitely changed me. The fear of catching this damn virus cannot be discussed away. A lack of social contacts, protection of parents from infection, fear for the neighbour and anger at people who deny reality endanger us all, a mix of feelings that I have never had before. Grief and compassion for people who have died, maybe just hanging on a fan somewhere, between death and life.

And yet – or maybe because of it – I feel more alive and creative than ever.

I know about the schizophrenia of this condition, but I cannot and will not feel guilty about it. Because the situation is what it is. In the end, it only matters what you make of it. I try to see the opportunities. Maybe some things will change permanently. Less flights, less travel, less buying. That may not serve the economy – but I don’t want to define myself by whether I am sufficient for the consumer goods industry.

Corona made me more thoughtful – and in a perverse way freer in the midst of the constriction. Freer in my thoughts and freer in the possibilities to express them.

Six months without a real résumé

What has Corona done to me now? Certainly not to a better person, not even to another person. But it made me humble, more grateful for what is and what is possible. And these six months made it very clear to me that life is a journey without a defined destination, plans are just what they are: plans. Certainties are only certain until they are cleared away and taken to absurdity. Three times a day if need be.

I am calmer than six months ago, more balanced and more open.
And – for whatever reason – much more optimistic.

It is far too early to be able to draw a conclusion. I don’t really know where the journey will go and how things will play out along the way.

Second wave, no wave, perfect wave or a perm?

But one thing I know for sure: I’m curious to see it, to experience it and to capture it in my own way. Because we all can’t choose, we’re in this boat on this trip and getting out is simply impossible. So only one thing really helps: make the best of it.

With that in mind, my esteemed readership: for the next six months. Or twelve.

With a little help from a friend


Oh, my appreciated audience, I guess we all know situations like this:
something small and unexpected happens, just at the fringes of our perception.
A bang somewhere, a faint smell, somebody calling your name but not meaning you.
Suddenly our brains start to take an extra shift and surprises us with beauty from inside.
Our own beauty.
Yesterday I had one of those precious moments.
Month-long thoughts and development-process just found its apex in words suddenly flowing without thinking. All my way through this crazy year condensed in three lines on the screen.
I was stunned and it made me happy and calm.

Thank you, Marc

Social job platforms like LinkedIn and Xing are not my favourite places for communication. And certainly not sources for enlightenment. But they are indeed a good way to stay in contact with old friends who left Facebook for good.
Like my old friend Marc.
We were quite close for a while during the techno years in Munich. He taught me without teaching. A big part of my understanding of graphic design and communication is based on his outstanding abilities not only to design but to explain. His way to shape ideas into forms and break down messages from abstract to real always impressed me – and shaped me and my work.

Times were changing, he moved to L.A., I stayed in Munich. But as both of us were early birds with all things online, we always kept a thin wire between us.
Yesterday I got a LinkedIn message from him, obviously directed to many of his contacts.
Asking for a quote that keeps us going through these weird times of pandemic lockdowns, to conquer the fear.
My first impression was: oh my god, a chain letter.
My second was: but it’s from Marc, so I better think about it, he just don’t send out junk.

Quotes? Well …

I’m not a massive fan of quotes. Most are overstretched, taken out of context. Some are altered to an extent the author would not even recognize them as their own words. And some are just meaningless sugar coating for kitsch postcards.
To work for me, a quote has to project a picture in my head, tell me a story, give me context.
So I’m much more a fan of opening lines – these few words which are able to drag me down into the rabbit hole of a book, suck me into the phantasy of the author, these lines which open a world.

My quote? Well, I’m with William Gibson. 

The sky above the port was the color of television, tuned to a dead channel.

William Gibson

Why? Well, it feels a lot like we finally reached the dystopian apocalypse of unleashed capitalism cyberpunk predicted for the 2020s… a dystopia which was never meant to happen, at least by the authors.  But as dystopian as it seems, I see the magic and poetry within it, the chance of fundamental chances and a brighter future.  And hey, we’re going back to the Moon,  Artemis will fly, we’re going to Mars and maybe beyond in our lifetime.  Call me an old techno evangelist, but I still believe in some of these magic words like love, peace, and unity.  So the image of a television tuned to a dead channel keeps me going.

And so my thoughts culminated
I learned a lot this year, much more than in maybe five years before.
A lot about virus’ and statistics I easily could miss.
A lot about people and their ways, thoughts, and changes into Q-omplete madness.
But most of all I learned about myself.
And that’s what flowed out in this special moment I answered Marc.

I learned this year that
everything I see is my canvas,
I’m the painter of my view,
the creator of my content,
the narrator of my dreams. 

And so I do. 

Sarah Jaeckel

He wrote back “Baby, this is beautiful …”
I love this guy.

If you want to know more about Marc Posch:
He’s worth a closer look.

Stepping up the learning curve for good – professional purpose


Oh, my dearest audience, your blogger faced quite an interesting week on the learning curve. Not only that my day job seems at least partially come back to life. But also I had to step up in video production quite a lot.
Let me explain: I love content creation and visual storytelling. Photography is nothing new to me, it’s my second nature to take pictures and work with them.
Videography is on a different page.
It seems ages ago that I got into all this blogging and vlogging – but yesterday I realized: I just got my capture card in the middle of March.
Since then I’m working on technic, recording, cutting, channel building, and most of all on developing an idea where to go with all of that. For the latter I got al clear idea now – but that is a story for another post.
I managed to keep up and running and halfway sane during this weird year, survived the first quarantine, and overcame pandemic-based unemployment at least in a first step with occupying myself with this site, photography, YouTube, and cyanotypes.
But now it’s time to move a step further.

From pro-bono to pro-bono with professional requirements

I supported happily some friends in their respective causes with a little bit of shooting and editing. They were happy also, deal done. Pro-bono of course. But the lingering relaunch of my former and future employer sets a different goal. We see our way in the recruiting and consulting business in open and authentic communication, so storytelling on social media is crucial for our brand building.
To realize that, I had to bring the skills I gained during the last months together. I guess it worked.


Good fun and brilliant teambuilding

Ok, it was not the first time I made some video clips for professional purposes. But the first time with proper gear. From location research to sound setup and from preparation to post-production. Some was already routine – but most was new territory for me. We had to figure out how to coordinate clips remotely (thank you, YouTube), realize stuff without a budget, bring ideas together, and well, finally, get creative like never before in this context.

And we really enjoyed it!

I really appreciate people dancing to salsa beats and enjoying public space, especially outside a museum for contemporary art. Except when I have to shoot a video.

Starting from scratch makes you proud of your results

My colleague and I did not have much experience with business videos, but we had a clear idea, where we want to go. Most business videos in HR represent what we did not want: fake and unnatural settings, artificial dialogues, awkward situations, and irrelevant content.
Our goal is to be as authentic and descriptive as possible without acting and posing like paid imposters.
So little did we know? And so much did we learn about the real obstacles of filming when I first packed my camera bag and we met up for shooting session #1.

First time I managed to get all gear I needed into my backpack. Learning curve, you know …

The learning curve is steep but satisfying

We shot at the banks of Munich’s river Isar – a very popular place for leisure, even during Corona. And we learned a lot.
First lesson: always check your baggage twice.
Second lesson: recheck it.
It’s a great thing to have an external monitor – but it doesn’t do anything without the adapter plate for the battery. And the adapter plate doesn’t do anything without the battery. Also, a white balance card is a great thing to have, especially when resting on your desk while you’re out in the field.
Sound – oh boy, the sound.
I got a Rode boom mic when we started.
Now I got a boom mic, a lavalier mic, and a Rode Go Wireless – and I know why. Not to mention a crash course in Audition.
I’ll get into the details in another post to come – but for now, I can tell you, it was worth the effort and we had a really good time.

If you want to see the first results and the things to come:

As always, I’m looking forward to your comments and input.