If there were some way I could actually frame these flowers floating in ink, I would hang them around my home. Gravity would play spoilsport there, so the next best thing I can do is to get prints of these fantastic photographs by Robert Peek. Based in the Netherlands, Robert’s flower photography has a touch of loneliness and mystery. This clearly plays out his series of ink-submerged floral images.
To most of us, a flower is something we pass on our way to work. To others, a bouquet is worth more than a present on a special day. But to an artist like Robert Peek, flowers represent a myriad of emotions. Sometimes melancholy, other times romance, a bit of solitude at times even. Seeing these photos, you might be tempted to think these images of flowers are shot on a portrait background. In reality, they are delicately placed inside water and ink and photographed.
The resulting images remind me of the kinds of photos seen on romance novel covers. There’s a stark sense of mystery to them that makes you want to stare at each of them. You have to wonder what thoughts went on in Robert’s mind as he snapped these. The murkiness in the water almost feels like a fog drifting over a moor on a wintery day.
An acclaimed advertising photographer based in the Netherlands, Robert Peek began his career in 1984. By varying the intensity of the ink in the water, Robert creates a different feel to the flowers. “For a long time, I’ve been growing flowers in my garden,” he says when I asked him about the inspiration behind the project. “From this, the idea grew to want to photograph them in my studio.”
I’m always happy when I see them on the wall.RObert Peek
How Does Robert Peek Create These?
Surprisingly, the photography process isn’t all that complex, says Robert. At first, the flowers are placed in water inside a fish tank. Afterward, white ink is slowly added to the water to create a nebulous look. While he often uses a Hasselblad H3D with a 120mm macro lens, a Nikon Z7 II with a 24-120mm Z lens was used for this series. Broncolor strobes are sometimes used, and Robert tethers his camera while working on these.
Enigmatic And Artistic
Cloaked in a surreal mystery, each photo in this series has a unique attraction. You tend to get drawn into the details while still being enveloped by an inscrutable aura. This is a prime example of passionate and tender art being expressed as a photograph. Yet it somehow seems to blur the dimensions between photography and paintings. Compared to just being photographed on a plain surface, when the petals peek through the milky water, they appear familiar yet magical. A graduate of the Royal Academy of Art in Hague, Robert says this process involves a lot of trial and error. “It depends on the kind of flower and color,” he clarifies. “I like it when they have a spherical look and are not too realistic.”
I wonder if Robert would consider making these as digital, moving artworks someday. Indeed, much like him, I would be happy to see these stunning pieces on my wall too. He has a selection of these for sale at The Art Of Interior.