German Photographer Marcus Schaefer
Marcus is a German photographer that I discover on Instagram, for a couple of weeks ago, although I was not looking to discover anything I was amazed by his pictures and his style. Consequently, I made him an interview because I knew I wanted to have his work on the page. I hope you enjoy this interview as much as I did, not to mention his amazing pictures.
Tell us about yourself
My name is Marcus, I am about to turn 29 (oh my god!!!) and I grew up in the countryside / mountains, in the very south of Germany. Having graduated from Grammar School and having finished my civilian service I caught a plane to Australia / South East Asia and was planning to be gone for good.
Not really knowing what to do next, I came back to Germany in 2010 and started studying
Fashion Journalism and Media Communication at the Academy of Fashion and Design in Munich. That`s where I developed my deep passion & love for photography. Better late than never ;).
When did you first get interested in photography? What sparked it, and when did you decide that it was what you were going to do?
The very first time I got aware of photography and its prospects was in summer 2010. Back then, I was visiting a very good friend of mine, that I used to live in Sydney and he just got a new camera. That was a Canon 500D. I had no idea of proper SLR cameras or anything like that during that time. I was completely fascinated by the depth of sharpness and what else was possible with a professional camera. I saved up some money and bought the very same camera and started shooting everything I saw. Most of my friends were quite happy about that, as they all got new portraits of themselves haha :). That was all during my time at the Academy of Fashion and Design in Munich, where I was studying Fashion Journalism and
Media Communication. Early 2011 I did an internship with a Munich based photographer for 3 months and that, combined with my deep connection to fashion at the academy, got me completely hooked to photography ever since.
Were you educated in photography, or are you self-taught?
I was not educated in the craft of photography, but as said earlier I did an internship with a photographer for 3 months which helped me a lot to learn about the craft & all
the basics in photography and everything being linked to it. In my eyes that was a pretty short, but very necessary time in my life, as I haven`t been assisting any photographer
ever since anymore. I was totally determined to find my own way of doing things. So I am more or less self-taught ;). At the academy though, we were educated in the history of
fashion photography from the very beginning. Getting to know and learning about all the significant protagonists and game-changers in fashion photography helped a lot with understanding to the whole industry and training your own eye.
What camera do you use the majority of the time?
I usually work with my Nikon 800E, which is an amazing camera, but I am absolutely in love with my Fujifilm XT1. She is digital but looks and works like an old analog camera. She is a simple beauty and easy to carry around with, as she is very tiny and handy.
Which photo are you currently most proud of?
I most recently shot two boys at the beach on the east coast of the US when I was on holiday. They happened to be brothers, half-asian and half german. Very special look.
In my eyes it`s a very intense shot, showing all their vulnerability in a timeless atmosphere. I love that image, it`s got everything it needs in a very simple and pure way.
Comparing where you are now with where you are when you first started, what could you have done differently to get to where you are sooner?
That`s a tricky question, as I strongly believe that you can´t really tell. We all make decisions at certain points in our lives, which lead us in certain directions, that could entirely change our lives. Therefore I guess everything is ok the way it went.
You’ve clearly worked with a wide range of models, what tips can you recommend to people looking to expand their portfolio?
Ideologically thinking I reckon choosing the right models for your very own project is a very personal thing. Therefore the only tips that I can give are, that there is no right or wrong. If you feel models look suits your very subjective idea of aesthetic, then he or she is just perfect.
No matter what.
Describe a typical shoot!
Getting to know the team, trying to create a friendly, harmonic atmosphere and enjoying a creative day while realizing all the magical ideas you´ve been collecting since the last shoot ;).
How much time do you spend taking photos, versus retouching photos?
I hardly retouch anymore, as I want to be as pure and raw as possible, alongside still adding a surreal twist via the poses or arrangements. An interplay between fiction and reality, photographed in a very honest way. Nowadays, absolutely preferring available light.
Rings and hats!
Who would you like to work with most?
Favorite photography book.
Irving Penn – Small trades
To know more about this amazing photographer please visit: Marcus Schaefer