About Us

FRANK OSSEN, a modern day Marco Polo and self-taught photographer, was born on June 15, 1954 in Hoorn, a small historical coastal town in the Netherlands. Instead of opting for a steady life in Holland (where he was studying the 'double bass' at the time), he decided in 1976 it was time to see the world. He bought his very first camera (an Olympus PEN-EE2), a busticket to India and set off. He soon realized that documenting his experiences would be of great help in understanding all these new worlds. And the camera (a Nikon-FA by now) became his closest ally. With square eyes he roamed our beautiful planet for many, many years, picking up the usual odd job on the way (sometimes working as a free-lance photographer, but also as a teacher, actor, guide, illustrator and even as a contractor). In 1992 - a married man by now - he returned to the Netherlands for a vacation, but the sudden, violent death of his brother made him stay. He settled down in Hoorn, where he is currently working on a photobook about his birthplace. He also regularly exhibits his work.  If you like his style of photography, you can contact him for assignments anywhere in the world.

HANS OSSEN, his late and only brother, was born on June 17, 1957 in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. After his highschool years he joined his elder brother Frank in 1976 on a world tour, working his way around the globe. After completing the full circle, he returned in 1984 to "good old" Amsterdam, where he was brutally robbed and murdered in 1992, just a few days after celebrating his 35th birthday. In his memory we've incorporated some travelogues and photographs of his hand (those taken in Papua New Guinea, Taiwan, Japan, Hawaii and the USA) in this website.

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JEMIMA OSSEN-ESOY was born on September 16, 1963 on Mindanao Island in the southern Philippines. There she met Frank Ossen in 1990, whom she married in Hong Kong the following year. After honeymooning extensively throughout remote China, she settled with Frank in the Netherlands, where she excels, among others, in exotic cooking, charcoal painting and videofilming. She shot really beautiful video-footage in Nepal (2000) and in the Philippines (2001). But most important she is the best support Frank could wish himself.

This website is best viewed with your monitor set on full screen (press F11) and with an 800 x 600 screen resolution, using Internet Explorer 5.0 as your browser.

All images used in this website (well over 1,700) have been scanned from the original transparencies and negatives in a resolution of 96 dpi only, using an Epson 1250 Photo-scanner. Needless to say that viewing these scans is really no substitute for enjoying the original images in high quality print, but nevertheless it's the only way to do so. Please contact us if you require specific images, as this website shows only a fraction of our collection. We'll be happy to do a search and e-mail the results to you.

Some of the travelogues are written in English, some in Dutch. So far lack of time has prevented me from translating all stories into English, but I'm planning to do so when time allows me. Also new travelogues will be added to the list. By the way, the images used in TRAVELOGUES cannot be enlarged, in contrary to the images used in our PHOTOGALLERIES, where a simple click on a thumbnail will show you the bigger picture.

The section on EXOTIC MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS is the fruit of more than 25 years of research. Being an amateur musician and a collector of musical instruments myself, it's hardly surprising that during my travels I spent many happy hours nosing around in musical shops, visiting concerts and talking to musicians. All the collected bits of information I finally organized when I got my computer and since World Music has become rather popular these days, I thought it be useful to put the information on line. Although more than 1500 entries of exotic musical instruments - modern western instruments are not included - is quite a lot, the list shall never be complete and additions are most welcome.

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