BLOG 12          March 2021


Every person has inspiration. I believe the most powerful story you can tell is your own inspired story. The story in which your soul, your passion, is expressed, the energy that brings beauty into our lives and makes life worth living.
These are exactly the stories I like to portray. Portraits that not only show the resemblance of the outside, but also connect with the inside. The side of you that touches the soul and the heart, expressing who you really are.

When you want a portrait painting, we will make this journey together. And as a trained coach, I will be present to encourage you to further unlock your potential and to embark on the valuable trip into your own inner self.
To achieve this we organize various meetings; we go for a walk, we eat together and we talk from heart to heart. We also have photography sessions that will be the basis for the painting.
In consultation I make a sketch with all the information collected. The canvas that emerges from this is the seal of this journey. In any case, it is a canvas that touches you, that looks at you.

My gift to you is another way of seeing. This is what I love doing most; giving you that inspiring pair of eyes that will help you to see your life differently.

BLOG 11          Feb 2021

1455 / 5000


The portrait
In recent years I have always enjoyed making portraits. Portraits with oil paint on linen in which the person is portrayed realistically with a refined and colourful touch. I use photography as a tool to make sketches and work with glazing and layering with oil paint. Besides the resemblance of the outside, a work has only succeeded when the inside is also portrayed. The soul of the other comes to life on canvas, so that it resonates with the viewer.
How does this work? In a series of conversations, the emphasis is initially on your own quest. What do you hope to find and fulfill by portraying yourself or a loved one? How do you see this for yourself, what may be shown and are there also things that want to stay out of the picture?
Every person has many faces and appearances and is unique in his own way. The basis of our freedom is the power to choose. To choose which appearance we prefer to adopt and in which we give the other the opportunity to meet us. In the realization of the final form, we embark on a journey of discovery that will result in you seeing yourself with different eyes. I hereby serve as a mirror. Patient, confident, and delighted, we eventually come into contact with something beyond us. This is how the soul takes shape.

BLOG 10          Dec 2020

How special to be invited to participate in an art project during corona. Because there is little opportunity to visit exhibitions or studios, the Municipality of Eijsden-Margraten has initiated a mailbox art project. My contribution consisted of a numbered and signed print of the painting Earth Child and the story that was written with it.

I am grateful to have been able to participate in this.

BLOG 9          Sep 2020

While the world fell silent during the corona pandemic, I worked on a portrait assignment. The painting is ready and is hanging with the new owners. In September it was chosen to be exhibited during the Weekend of the Portrait in Amsterdam. You can find the information on the website.

Information Weekend of the Portrait

So nice to have been able to participate, it was really a great weekend.

BLOG 8          May 2020

What a special welcome it was it when we brought the finished painting and all the children of the neighborhood came to admire the portrait of their boyfriend.

I am still impressed and I am very grateful to have been asked to work on this assignment.

BLOG 7           March 2020




I started painting again.

While the world has fallen silent during the Corona pandemic, I feel privileged to have a studio at home where I can work. At the beginning of this year, after a long period of not painting, I started working on a portrait assignment again, which I really enjoy. The parents of the boy gave me the freedom to chose the theme of the painting and as if I felt this crisis in advance, it became a theme in which stillness and love for nature are important.

The Earth Child is a story that wants to be painted. A story about reflection and transformation. I will tell more about it soon.

BLOG 6           October 2018

The opening of Swan song on September 29 was great; warm, loving and intimate. A wonderful day.

Adriaan spoke a nice opening word that I enclose, as well as some pictures.


BLOG 5           September 2018

Museum of Natural History Rotterdam


In the new exhibition ‘Swan Song’

focuses on the swan, as a symbol of eternal beauty and loyalty. The result – a series of six paintings and some preliminary studies – evokes emotions around death and love.

“Swan Song” can be seen from September 29, 2018 to January 13, 2019 in the Van Roonzaal of the Natural History Museum Rotterdam.

BLOG 4           September 2018

While I am working on the last preparations for the exhibition in Rotterdam, I also organize dinner parties. Last week I invited good friends and shared the developments of the past weeks. I also showed the recent paintings of the series Swan song and was surprised by the reaction of Asrin.
While we were standing in the studio surrounded by the paintings, she said that in the beginning she did not understand the paintings of the swans at all. She could not put her finger on why I made them.
In short, I told her that I often do not know myself, but that I had a special experience a few days earlier. I visit a Pilates class weekly and l was lying on my back on a mat when my thoughts went to Leda and the swan. A strange thought came up: “I am Leda and the swan myself,” I said, “at first I was dead in my own arms, then I began to heal myself, and finally I began to love myself. And this whole series is made around the treatments against a deadly disease, isn’t this a strange story? ”
Asrin was quiet and when I looked at her I saw her eyes filled with tears. I embraced her and we stood in silence between works.
I do not know exactly what happened, but later she wrote: “Of course I had seen some of the paintings, but when I saw the last canvas in your studio, I felt very emotional. I did not quite understand the swans earlier. Now every detail of those paintings is important to me. Suddenly I saw everything very clearly. It may sound vague, but I’ve been thinking a lot about the paintings, you and me since this day. The swans now tell a story. I think that if I were to sit in front of those paintings and write about how I associate myself with the paintings, I now can do that for a long time. ”
The series of swans has been completed now. And I am looking forward to show them.

BLOG 3           Augustus 2018

She is one of the greatest gifts that life gave me, Rosaline, born 29 years ago and since then a presence that I do not want to miss for gold. She is a model from the first moment and often produces sparkling surprises. She likes photography and made this little video when Alf Mertens came to photograph me. So wonderful.

BLOG 2            July 2018

People can inspire me enormously. For example, a few years ago, I was visited by a young entrepreneur who fascinated me so much that I made a painting in which I united his two greatest loves. Professionally he has a company that focuses on the market of 3D printed skull implants. In his private life, just a few weeks before we were introduced to one another, he met the love of his life. At that time he showed me his company and also introduced me to a stunning young woman. Both made a big impression on me. It was the love that I felt and recognized that inspired me. The love to do something good for others, to be meaningful. The skull implants are of great significance in the medical world. The girlfriend was not just a beautiful woman to love, but someone he felt the responsibility for to keep on loving her. Through thick and through thin.

I then made a painting of her in which I painted a skull implant in the shape of a heart in her head. The painting was given the title Look with love. And it does its job 😉 It has already hung in different places and I’ve had many nice reactions to it.

BLOG 1          July 2018

Heb je ooit je haren verloren?

Ik wel.

Ik verloor ze twee jaar geleden door de behandelingen tegen een dodelijk ziekte.

Hoewel haren in het niet vallen bij vele andere dingen die je in je leven kunt kwijtraken was het vreugdevol te zien dat ze langzaam weer terug kwamen, samen met mijn conditie. Na een jaar groei en herstel van wat ik mijn lichamelijk dieptepunt kan noemen, was ik blij met mijn nieuwe ik. Toen kwam ook het besef dat wat ik meemaakte mij fundamenteel heeft veranderd. In positieve zin; ik ben toch zó bij met elke dag, elk uur, elke minuut… met nu nu nu. Want dit moment is alles wat je hebt, meer is er niet. Geloof mij.

Die nieuwe haren heb ik natuurlijk laten fotograferen.

Photo Alf Mertens, 2018