The Netherlands is " one of the world's most densely populated nations ". And that has its consequences.
One of them is that open spaces without any obstructions or eyesores are rare. And that you rarely get an unobstructed view of points of interest in our landscapes, be it urban landscapes or the countryside.
You point your camera lens at something and think: "That would look great if ..."
- in which "..." can stand for things like:
"that windmill wasn't completely surrounded by ugly housing and industrial buildings"
"only I could walk around it and shoot it from a better side"
"there weren't busy roads and railway lines on all sides"
And although over the years I find that I have become quite skilled at finding a viewpoint that works somehow, I still find obstructions annoying. And I often pass a nice building or other point of interest without taking a shot, frustrated by the fact that I just can't shoot it the way I want.
I'lll give you an example of how one sometimes has to go to look very carefully at a scene in order to determine how to leave out eyesores and obstructions.
In order to get a shot like this:
you have to find a viewpoint that allows you to leave out all this:
This is the windmill around the corner from where I live, and as you can probably see there's a supermarket on one side, built right against it, with flags, a car park, advertising signs and bottle & clothing disposal containers. And partly visible is the office building on the other side, with (invisibly here) another car park. Not in this picture, but also not very handy when you try another viewpoint, are another car park, a skate park, and an ugly modern building that houses a retirement home.
And it's often like this. Last Saturday I went to look at about eight windmills I hadn't seen before. Several I didn't photograph at all, it just wasn't possible to shoot them without all kinds of eyesores obstructing the view. Several others took a lot of doing to get a more or less unobstructed view. This shot in my portfolio shows one of the most succesful efforts in that respect, but even that one wasn't exactly ideal - see the comments.
It's a bit of a puzzle, sometimes, being an amateur photographer in a very densely populated country!