Archive for the ‘Abroad’ Category

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Flowers, flowers and more flowers! :-)

July 30, 2014

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In 2008 I got to know Steffen Teuscher, at this time he was a student at the “Akademie für Naturgestaltung” (Zwettl) and asked me to take photos of the class and their masterpieces. Some years later he has become supervisor at the “Kommunale Fachschule für Floristik” (Straubing) and I’m very happy and grateful his students chose me to take the photos of their examination for the master craftman’s diploma of floristry!

So I went there  with my assistant by train two weeks ago and stayed for 3,5 days, watched and photographed the students during their exam, while they were transforming colorful fields of flowers into wonderful artwork. It was very interesting to see what you can do with plants and how those masterpieces were made.

IMG_1799Britta Neher at work

Everyone had to make five pieces:
– a bouquet (Diameter: At least 40 cm)
– an interpretation of historical quotations
– a funeral wreath
– a bridal bouquet
– table / conversation (max. 5 qm)

It was amazing to see how much effort and time the students put into their work and every detail; they welded, they painted, they timbered. There has also been an exhibition for three days at the Karmelitenkloster and Salzstadel Straubing.

Unfortunately I can’t post every single photo – I will have to put most of the pictures into the slideshow below because there are simply too many, but anyway I chose some of them:

IMG_1190Stephanie Jäger, interpretation: “Ora et labora” (Bete und arbeite), Benedikt v. Nursia

IMG_1144Carina Höfler, interpretation (detail): “Qualis artifex pereo!”
(Welch ein Künstler geht mit mir zugrunde!), Nero

IMG_1413Monika Will, funeral wreath

IMG_2060Kathrin Grischek, bridal bouquet

IMG_2368Sina Jende, table / conversation “ligthbar”

IMG_0670One of the bouquets – I loved how they were standing in big (mostly foursquare) bowls of water! Amazing effect if you look at it from one of the corners! 🙂

Please have a look at the slideshow below – the masterpieces are made by:
Veronika Albrecht, Andrea Dirr, Kathrin Grischek, Carina Höfler, Stephanie Jäger, Sina Jende, Nicole Mußler, Britta Neher, Tina Partenheimer, Regina Schindele, Karin Stark and Monika Will.

Congratulations again for passing the exam – may you all have a life full of creativity, helpful colleagues and customers who appreciate the wonderful artwork you create!

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Aris Sas

February 13, 2012

At the beginning of November 2011 I have been in Luzern (CH). What a beautiful town! I went there to watch the musical “Hair”. Markus Neugebauer – I already photographed him and his band “freiraum5” – played “Berger”, and Aris Sas was “Claude”, both of them as well as the ensemble did a good job!

Aris  is a remarkably talented actor  and has the most amazing speaking voice I’ve heard until now – as a musical singer he’s very well known anyway as he has been the first “Alfred” in “Tanz der Vampire”. I already “know” Aris since more than 15 years, that’s why I also know how much he does NOT like being photographed (although you’ll find THAT out very quickly ;-)). So I felt very honored (and still do) that I got Aris’ permission and trust to take photos of him. Though the conditions really weren’t the best: First of all I had taken the night-train (because there are always problems with my photo-equipment at the airports…) to Luzern, so I’ve slept about 30 minutes altogether and was really tired. Secondly, Aris got lots of PR for the show to do, besides playing one of the main characters in the evenings, still exhausted from the rehearsals; anyway he had the patience to meet me for pictures between a radio-interview (outside of Luzern) and the show. THEN it started to get dark (thank goodness I had transportable flashlights with me!), AND he had to be in the theatre in time.

So shooting was kind of stressful for me, because I usually take about two hours of time as the model needs some time to get relaxed, especially if he/she doesn’t like being photographed. Then we need to find the best pose, the best light, a good background that fits the model’s hair/colors/clothes/… and the right angle for the person’s face, all this needs time. Either time, or you need to know someone well, be experienced, really lucky and have a photogenic model that trusts the photographer. Although I don’t know very much about Aris – compared to others I’ve photographed, or those I already know about the same amount of time – I really appreciate Aris a lot. I like honesty, earnestness, straightforwardness. Someone who tells me what’s ok and what’s not for him/her. Those are all character traits that – for me- are easy to work with. And I love love love the hair! 🙂
I’m very grateful that through photography I got chances like this, working with such talented people. And I want to take more pictures!!!

This urge to take more and more photos of a person I find truly interesting sometimes is incredible, and actually painful if I don’t get the chance to finish what had just started with taking pictures for, I don’t know – one or two hours? Sometimes this isn’t enough at all, sometimes even two full days are not enough. That doesn’t mean I’m not happy with the result of the first pictures we took. Far from it! Actually I can describe this more as a kind of addiction which can make me very very happy, but is killing me later. Like taking away  a kid’s toy…Nevertheless I can’t help wanting this…stopping photography at all and closing my eyes to all the beauty in the world would be the only solution.

In cases like this one I’d really really love to take more photos, finding out how different someone can look. Sometimes people change a lot during a photoshoot, I don’t know if the person really changes, or if it’s just me who sees the person in a different (most of the time more beautiful) way with getting to know them. Probably it’s a mix of both? I can’t tell afterwards. And I wish I could show people who are really fighting against themselves, how beautiful they are. Unfortunately I can’t do more than showing them my point of view – their own beauty – through my pictures – I think that’s a great thing, but I wish it would be enough.

Aris, thanks again for your time, it was a pleasure,  and I hope everybody else likes the pictures as much as I do. Ok, enough of the talking, here are my favorite photos – enjoy! 🙂

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“Mary Patrick” Yvonne Köstler, “Sister Act” Hamburg

September 9, 2011

As the “Sister Act”-premiere in Vienna will be on Sep. 15th, I thought I’d post some photos I took this year in the TUI Operettenhaus in Hamburg.

In May I have been in Hamburg, and as I already know Yvonne Köstler, who is 2nd Cast “Mary Patrick” in the musical “Sister Act”, since some years, we decided to take some photos at the theatre! It was great, Yvonne is a very funny person, so of course she’s perfect for “Mary Patrick” and did a great job when I was watching the show in the evening! Yvonne asked if we could use her costumes and take photos in the theatre, we got permission to do so.

What surprised me most was the weight of the costumes! Wow, they are REALLY heavy because of the many layers and all the glittering stuff (lots of sequins). It must be very warm and exhausting to wear these costumes! And the nuns all have different pajamas, very cute. 🙂

I also tried a long-exposure-thing – Yvonne was twirling around (or moved her arms that looked like wings sometimes, or both) while the shutter was open, the flash was fired once and that’s how we got a sharp picture with some motion blur:

Thanks again to Stage entertainment/TUI Operettenhaus and of course thanks Yvonne, I had lots of fun with you! 🙂

Here’s also the link to the official website for “Sister Act” in Hamburt, and here’s the link to Yvonne’s own website!

And now enjoy the slideshow!

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Dubai 2011

March 16, 2011
Last year I found out about Gulf Photo Plus and was there in 2010 for an amazing week, joining workshops with JoeyL, Joe McNally and “Strobist” David Hobby. I met wonderful people there and GPP 2011 was of course on my “to-do”-list for this year! 🙂 My best friend Michi booked my plane-ticket (thanks again!) already in September and in January I booked the courses I wanted to attend. This year I decided for “The constructed image” – a three day workshop about fashion/concept-photography with the wonderful CLAIRE ROSEN, a  fashion and fine art photographer living in the USA.
Please have a look at her website: http://www.clairerosenphoto.com/

The second workshop I attended was “On location with Zack Arias”, please have a look at his website too: http://www.zackarias.com/

My programme for photofriday (in the UAE Friday is the “weekend”) was:
“The Apple ipad as a Photographer’s Tool” with Zack Arias and Steve Simon,
“Getting Your Work Out on the Web & Social Media” with David Nightingale, JoeyL, Manny Librodo,
“The Appropriate Response”  with Gregory Heisler,
“Panel: Breaking into Editorial & Documentary Photography” with Farah Nosh and Steve Simon.


Now some more information about the workshops I joined there:

Monday started with “The constructed image” with Claire Rosen. She was very interested in our work and asked questions about ourselves, looked at our portfolios. I think it was a wonderful group, people showed amazing pictures! Then Claire showed us many pictures different fashion photographers had published, then some of her own great work. We talked about finding a concept for a photography project, and we also got some homework to do for the next day. I chose to take a picture/selfportrait inspired by a song of the musical “Rent”: “Will I”, which is actually about a life support group for people with AIDS, but I transferred it to receiving a bad message, being sad about something. As it was already dark outside I had to use my hotelroom, which was not very beautiful (stayed at the Holiday Inn Express because it’s in walking distance to the Conference Center, where all the courses started), but found a good place including light to take that picture. I first tried to take that picture with a letter in my hands, but didn’t like it anymore later, so I chose that photo here.

On the second day of Claire’s workshop (after discussing our homework) she showed us the locations, where we had to shoot our own concept that we had to make on that second day, and also did a Demo-Shoot in the Conference-Center.

Our location for our shoot on Wednesday was an incredible beautiful and very expensive hotel called “Jumeirah Zabeel Saray” which is on the Jumeirah-palm. We could choose between the Voda-Bar (which I had chosen), the restaurant and the Hammam/Spa. Claire told us how to make a concept, showed us how to make a moodboard (which is good to show to customers or the stylists/make-up-artists/models) and gave us time to make our concepts. I was really scared and got stuck at some point, was stressed out about how to find a project/concept in such short time, I’m really not creative. Of course I had a mood in mind after the first impression, after seeing photos of the location, but no idea how to make a concept out of it. Claire is such a sweet person, she helped me a lot with asking questions, and finally I had concept and knew what I wanted! 🙂 In a moodboard you usually put in some photos to show what you plan to do – as these are not mine I can’t publish them here, but here’s my color-board and a short description of my project which was in the moodboard too.

Description:
Location: Bar 

Woman fleeing from an ALIEN place, which is “owned” by white, blurry, scary creatures (black, dark “shadows”)
She’s wearing a purple-pink flowing dress, make-up is very light, white, “young”, rather “natural”, long, open hair which is flying (also the dress) as she is trying to run away from these creatures.
Scary, dark surrounding.
Props: Something big, white for the “ghost”
Colours:
On Wednesday we went to the hotel, and everybody got two hours to shoot his/her own project, we were divided into three groups/locations, one was shooting and the other three were assisting, Claire helped everybody as well as her two assistants Eman and Danny. It was an exciting day with many tears, stressed out people but great results! Unfortunately the location wasn’t the most welcoming (although it looked overwhelming!), one girl of our group couldn’t even shoot her project because we were kicked out of the bar one hour earlier (no one told us that the bar had to open by that time already!). It also looked completely different than I had imagined after we had seen the photos, so my plan didn’t work like I wanted…. here’s the drawing I made for light/ghosts/model. There were no couches in the picture we saw in advance…. :-S


At least I got a really good model, she already worked for Nivea and other big companies, she did her job very well! Thanks! 🙂
Also our stylist Gemma got my perfect dress, that was exactly how I imagined it, thanks! Thanks to Michelle too for doing the make-up and hair!
Danny helped me a lot with the technical stuff and light, and here’s the final photo!!! 🙂 I’m really happy with it!


Here are two additional photos:



I know my concept also included ghosts/creatures, but Claire said it is fine like it is, she would skip photoshopping the creatures in, because that would be too obvious. It’s already scary how it is, so I think it’s better to leave it like this. Anyway, here’s one photo of a “ghost”, I shot it, but haven’t done the photoshopping (I shot ghosts on different places at the bar, so there would have been about three or four), and I would blurr it out even more. Perhaps I’ll try it later, when I feel healthy enough again and post it here!


I’m really happy with my photo and Claire also showed us her favourites of the other photographers in this workshop at the vista bar on Wednesday evening, I think we got phantastic images! Thanks Claire, Eman and Danny! 🙂 Here’s a photo of Saturday evening with Claire, myself, Danny and Niki!


On Thursday I was already feeling really ill, but went on location with Zack Arias. We went to Karama, that’s where poor people in Dubai live. We took some models with us, were divided into some groups and went out to take our photos. Zack gave us the assignment to take photos about “contrast” in Dubai, we should take photos for a magazine and he showed us examples for pictures he took last year. Suddenly we heard that Manny Librodo’s class who was also shooting in Karama had troubles with the police and even secret service, so Zack “evacuated” us to a restaurant and invited us to lunch – thanks Zack! The police wanted to delete all the camera-cards, although we/they got the right permissions to shoot. After a while all the problems were solved and we went to another place to go on with shooting. On the next workshop-day Zack evaluated our work on the bus, our location for Saturday was the Dubai International Financial Centre. I really felt very ill and spent most of the day with watching the others taking photos, but that was fine with me. Back at the classroom Zack showed us which pictures he has taken today and what photoshop-editing he would do with it, that was the most interesting part for me in that workshop. Zack is really good at explaining technical things, that’s why I booked that workshop, it was basic sometimes, but it’s good to have explanations again.

Here are some shots I took on the two days with Zack:


On Saturday evening the “Shoot-out” with Zack Arias and JoeyL was on the schedule. Last year the “show” with David Hobby, Zack Arias and JoeyL was already really funny and I was looking forward to this year. Usually it’s the new teachers that have to do that shoot-out, having 20 min time to shoot someone they don’t know before, without knowing what the other photographer did before and photoshop it. Last year Joey just took a polaroid, sticked it onto the screen and left the room. This year they had a “Derwisch” here who was wearing a colourful dress and did a twirling dance. Gregory Heisler commented everything during the shooting and tried to get Joey out of concentration, which was really funny! 🙂 In the end Gregory had to take a photo himself too, he did really well I think. 😉

Here are some photos of the shoot-out:

On Sunday I slept really long, a hopeless attempt to feel better… :-S As the elevator up the Burj Khalifa was already booked days before I decided to come with my friends I got to know at GPP 2010. It was lots of fun, but I went back to the hotel really exhausted some hours later. Here are some of the photos I took up there!

And here a selfportrait: 🙂
Here are some photos of my friends Joel, Dennis and Rob! And YES, we had lots of fun! 🙂


Some photos from outside the Burj:

I spent a phantastic week there (although I was ill since Wednesday and still am – thanks aircondition…. :-S ) and am already looking forward to next year! I wish GPP would last two weeks. 🙂 I met wonderful people there and had so much fun!!! Thanks to everyone! Thanks to Mohamed and his team for organizing this event, thanks to all my new friends I got to know there and of course thanks to my amazing teacher Claire Rosen, her great assistants Danny and Eman and of course Zack Arias, who is such a patient and phantastic teacher! Thanks to Rob, Dennis, Joel, Tom, Niki for all the fun at the Vista-Bar, at our workshops and our spare-time! Thanks to all the other people at the workshops like Martina, Ivana, Rawan, Wed, Muzna, Michael, Marc, Evgenia, Karim,… it was a pleasure to meet you all!!! See you again next year! 🙂

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Hamburg? Or Berlin? Or BOTH?

February 18, 2011

Last year I was asked if I would be interested in coming to Cologne, to take photos of some singers/dancers/actors, so I went there in April. Actually I wanted to fly, but unfortunately this stupid icelandic volcano changed my plans – I had to take the train as Airberlin cancelled both of my flights. A late night 13-hour-train-journey without sleep, arrival at lunch-time in Cologne and taking pictures at once was really exhausting, but I enjoyed getting to know some new and very nice people! Thanks again to Susanne Ortner and Sarah Schütz who managed all the appointments with their colleagues! 🙂 It was a pleasure! Thanks also to Musicaldome Köln for letting us use the theatre for taking photos – a phantastic location!

Please scroll down to see some of the pictures I took there.

As it was a lot of fun to take photos in Cologne and getting to know the people I photographed there, I decided to make another journey this year – either to Hamburg or perhaps to Berlin, or perhaps even both? Right now I’m planning my trip to Hamburg, I will book as soon as I know if there are enough people interested in new photos taken by me. So if you are living in Hamburg and need new portraits (for auditions, website) or know someone who might need pictures, please e-mail me and I’ll send you more information as soon as I know if/when I’ll be there for sure. I expect to travel to HAMBURG at the end of April, if there are some people in BERLIN who need photos too, don’t hesitate to e-mail me – if there’s enough interest, I guess I’ll come around in May. 🙂

In Vienna I have my own studio, but unfortunately I can’t take ALL of my equipment to Hamburt/Berlin, so I think we should take most of the pictures outside. Last year I took my two little speedlites (strobes usually used on-camera, but can also be used off-camera, though the light is rather harsh for full-body-length-shots then, I wouldn’t REALLY recommend that, though it works if the surrounding is not too dark), so if you need headshots, it’s ok for sure to take the photos somewhere inside (if you have a cool flat or perhaps at a theatre again?), otherwise I would suggest to take photos somewhere outside, I’m sure there will be lots of cool places in Hamburg! Or Berlin too. 😉 If someone definitely needs studio-shots we would have to rent a studio which will increase the costs, but if that’s not a problem, just tell me and I’ll try to find a studio to rent, wherever I’ll be! 🙂

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