Maxi Pfeil, 24, Germany, Photography 
"Photography has always fascinated me for its aspects of time and reality. I started the Basicyear with the intention of continuing my education in the Photography Department. During my first year at the Rietveld I realised, that I would be given the opportunity to grow and expand my horizon in a free and experimental way.
I very much value the small size of the department and it gives us students and teachers a more 'in depth way' to know each other, to talk about our process and to reflect as a group. The great interest of the teachers in your process and results, and you as a person is a beautiful thing. It makes a good fundament for your studies and for your relationship with the people around you. 
The most valuable thing in my way of working, I have learned, is to take a step back once in a while, to look left and right – it is okay to stand still at certain points and to question yourself. The theory lectures have helped me a lot with this.
Often, I feel overwhelmed by all the information, images and temptations in this world. For me it is sometimes hard to block out all the noise and to purely focus on the bottom of ’what it is about’."