I'm an international award winning (3x IPA 2010/2011/2012 1st and 2nd place winner and SWPA finalist in 2010) black and white photographer specialized in long exposure seascapes and architectural photographs and recently also specialized in black and white fine art automotive photography for clients in the German automotive industry.
Due to these commercial projects for German clients I've recently fallen in love with all my heart with B&W fine art automotive photography so I'm dedicating most of my time in the months and year to come to this type of photography.
Furthermore I teach photography workshops all over the world focused on black and white long exposure photography. I do this largely as co-founder of the Glass Star Agency, an agency we set up recently with as objective to share knowledge and success with other photographers. Check out: www.glass-star-agency.com to find out more.
Besides being the co-owner of Glass Star Agency I'm also the co-owner of www.bwvision.com where I've been sharing my tutorials on B&W Long exposure photography and interviews with renowned fine art photographers like Michael Levin, Cole Thompson and Marc Koegel for a few years already.
When I started this website in 2009 I was one of the first who shared detailed tutorials on how to take long exposure photographs and how to process them for free on the web. All other serious and detailed information on Long exposure photography back then was only available in book form, via workshops but not for free. There are a lot more these days, but still too little good information available for free.
I'm also a member of Team NIK Worldwide, a select group of some of the best photographers in the world that work closely with NIK Software and deliver practical education for the photographic arts community and I've been featured in various NIK Software Silver Efex Pro2 ads on video (Nik Software) and in magazines like Outdoor Photographer, Photoshop user, Popular Photography Magazine, etc.
To be honest I don't like to talk about cameras and lenses and other equipment. The point of this is that I want to avoid people to think that the quality of your photographs is determined by the quality of your equipment. That is only true to a certain extent: sports photographers need fast cameras and lenses, so do news photographers, street photographers need small and light sensitive cameras.
But fine art photography is a completely different thing. The quality of your photographs is determined by the vision of the artist, not by the quality of your lenses. So what does a fine art photographer need? Just a camera and his vision. Having said that, like any other craftsman I appreciate good tools, so here's my list:
- Canon 5D MkIII - My main camera for architecture, landscapes and automotive photography. It has a 16Gb CF and 16Gb SD card on it.
- Fuji X100 Limited Edition - I love this classic looking camera more than any other of my cameras! It's ideal for street and portraits but you can also use it for long exposure photography. I think other camera manufacturers like Canon or Nikon should really consider how their cameras look like, I don't think they look good at all. 16Gb SD card, lens hood with adapter, red Soft Release button from Abrahamson.
- Canon 7D - My back up camera.
- Canon 400D - The first camera I won international awards with at the Sony World Photography Awards and International Photography Awards. I never use it anymore but it gets a special place in my collection!
- Canon 70-200mm
- Canon 17-40mm - this is my main lens for the 5DmkIII and I shoot everything with it.
- Canon 55-250mm
- Tamron 10-24mm - I use this on the 7D only.
- Canon 50mm prime
- Gitzo GT 2830 tripod and Gitzo 2781 QR ball head - this is my main tripod made of basalt so it's not too heavy for traveling and not too light for long exposure photography in windy conditions.
- Manfrotto 055XPROB tripod and 804RC2 ball head
- few other smaller tripods from Vanguard that I use to beat up annoying security people:)
- 2 B+W ND 10 stops filters
- 1 B+W ND 6 stops filters
- a new set of various Hitech filters that will be assembled for me by Formatt-Hitech and provided to me by the fantastic people of Hitech. Don't know the exact specs yet till I have them but there's one filter which is quite revolutionary and can't wait to try that one.
- A few studio lights with softboxes that I only use for still life and some portrait work.
- 27" iMac with 16 Gb Internal Memory.
- 1 Tb NAS
- 2 Tb External HD
- 2x 1 TB External HD's
- several portable HD's
- Wacom Intuos 4 table Medium (don't go for the larger version!)
- PS CS 5
- NIK Software Color Efex Pro 4
- NIK Software Silver Efex Pro 2
- NIK Software Define
- OnOne Software, mainly Perfect Resize and sometimes Perfect B&W and the other OnOne Software tools.
My workflow looks like this:
White Balance correction, perspective correction (optional), sharpening and crop in Lightroom > Export as TIF file. Import TIF File in PS CS5 > Color correction in Color Efex Pro plugin (Pro contrast) > Silver Efex Pro2 conversion (3 conversions: 1 low-key version, 1 high key version, 1 neutral version) > Using my own SGM (Selective Gradient Masking) techniques in PC CS5 to combine the 3 different B&W conversions into 1 merged results > Various other adjustments and fine tuning (curves, levels, dodge/burn, etc.) in PS CS5, always using SGM to apply the effects > Resize with Perfect Resize.
- I'd like to have a PhaseOne camera, just to see if that really would make a difference in the end result. Yes, you can make bigger prints, but does it look better? I want to use this to further develop and specialize in automotive photography
- A few tilt shift lenses
- A Large format view camera (I still love film)
- Better lighting equipment for studio work (planning to focus on portraiture during 2013)