Picture is one of the first Dutch heavy metal bands. Formed in 1979, they were especially popular in the Netherlands, Germany and Italy for their live performances, and still have a fan base in South America, Mexico and Japan.
Picture supported AC/DC, Ted Nugent and Saxon in the Netherlands. With Saxon, they did a full European tour in 1981. Later on they toured with Rose Tattoo in Germany and headlined tours in Italy and Israel.
Rinus Vreugdenhil and Laurens Bakker originally got together in 1977 and started jamming with various musicians. It wasn’t until 1979 that the classic lineup of Rinus, Laurens, Jan Bechtum, and Ronald van Prooijen came together.
Early on in Picture's career they were produced by Cat Music. They worked with manager Henk van Antwerpen and were signed to Warner Bros. Records. However, Picture felt their label were trying to steer them in a pop direction and quit the label to sign with Backdoor Records, a subsidiary of Phonogram Records.
The original line-up recorded their debut album, Picture 1 and their second effort, Heavy Metal Ears in 1980 and 1981 respectively. To begin with, they gigged throughout the Netherlands and nearby Germany and built a following. In the meantime, they started composing their own music. Jan would usually come up with the riffs, then the other members would contribute their parts. After hashing and rehashing the songs, they became the titles that would appear on the first album, Picture I.