It wasn’t the plan to become a tattoo artist when he picked up drawing again in his early twenties, but it just turned out that way. “Just for fun, some illustrations, which were from the beginning already a bit political or with some sort of message. I posted them on Instagram, then some friends said it would be cool as a tattoo.”
Mattijs, or as his tattoo name Mattys, started off doing stick and poke tattoos in student rooms, after some time got asked to work in a tattoo studio and by now it is his fulltime profession.
“For a long time I thought I wasn’t good at drawing at all. And a lot of drawings from the early days I couldn’t really tattoo in the beginning. I liked the drawings but wasn’t really paying attention to how I could make it into a good tattoo. I didn’t start off with becoming a tattoo artist as the goal, so it still amazes me sometimes that it happened like that.” Read more
Being the most common bird in Amsterdam, probably you’ve seen pigeons walking around with great difficulty, as some toes or even the whole foot is missing. I never thought much about it and assumed that this individual had an unlucky accident. But they are not isolated cases and it’s actually very common among city pigeons. It’s caused by little strings, threads or human hair from the city streets which get wrapped around the toes and feet, eventually can lead to those body parts dying off. This is known as stringfoot.
In Amsterdam a group of people is determined to help them and are checking on pigeons on a regular basis. Many pigeons can be helped by just catching them and cutting the strings with a small scissors. I’m talking to animal rights activist Billie Savage, who initiated the project. Read more
They met eight years ago while studying at the renowned University of Gastronomic Sciences in Italy, also known as the university of the Slow Food movement. Now, Andres Jara and four others are running the Stadsgroenteboer farm in Osdorp. On 0,4 hectares at the western outskirts of Amsterdam, they are growing no less than 60 different kinds of vegetables, plus 15 different herbs.
I cycle there to meet Andres, who besides being a vegetable farmer, is also a chef and is selling plant based food products under the name of Roots, Rice & Beans. I find him working behind his laptop, underneath a makeshift canvas roof, his office for the day. While he shows me the property, he tells me all about De Stadsgroenteboer and his other projects. Read more
The Amsterdam Animal Ambulance is on the job 24/7 to help animals in emergency situations. Most of their staff is working on a voluntary basis. We followed vet tech and vegan Lara during one of the shifts.
Check out other inspirational people we interviewed!
The biggest slaughterhouse of Amsterdam is located in a residential area in the west of town. Today The Save Movement is holding a peaceful vigil, bearing witness to the fate of the cows arriving at the abattoir.