How many hoops does our mind have to jump through to make sense of this tangled mess of particles, atoms, waves and energy that we live in? On what level of strangeness do our minds exist to be able to think »our minds«? The world is just as magical as it is real. The camera as an instrument to measure light gives me the means to practice an entirely subjective form of Magical Realism. Due to the generally calm and observant nature of my photographs I like to call it Deadpan Magical Realism.
As a child I used to observe the world through the viewfinder of my parents’ Agfamatic, a pocket camera for 126 type film cartridges. Film stock was precious, so I imagined thousands of pictures I never actually made. These days I use digital cameras exclusively and print with archival ink on archival paper to bring my photographs into existence. This is an act of magic.
Wether I make an actual exposure or not, I grab and hold a camera several times a day to remember how it feels. This is an act of realism.
A personal contract for making photographs, inspired by Matthew Herbert. It applies to me and myself only, and should not be considered authoritative by anyone else.
- Try your best to make photographs you can’t explain.
- It is fine to make photographs you can explain.
- Make room for idiosyncrasy.
- Being close enough is not about the physical distance.
- A photograph is a statement about you in relation to your physical environment. Use that opportunity.
- Aim to use the camera more than the smart phone. The magical thinking that a dedicated tool will impart dedication might actually work.
- Purge often. Don’t fear deleting a photograph because you might regret it two years on. You won’t. If in doubt, print it, then you’ll know.
- Edit with prints only. Use the screen for processing and deciding what to print.
- Trust the subconscious more than narratives.
- Meaning will reveal itself over time.
- Take your time.
Two quotes that guide me:
»Photos have no narrative content. They only describe light on surface.« Gary Winogrand
»Being consistent is WAY less interesting than being yourself. And if you’re not interesting? Good luck with your Big Consistency Project.« Merlin Mann.
I was born in 1972 and have worked as translator, musician, audio engineer and stock photographer. I live near Munich, Germany.