Interview: Photographer Martin Duerr (Germany)
Tell us something about yourself
I was born in Munich, raised up there and studied Design. I have had contact to photography and photographers but worked the past 20 years as an illustrator and 3d artist for TV, film and computergames.
How and when did you get into photography?
This happened by chance. I met the American Explorers of Light photographer Clint Clemens through another project and he was the one who brought me back (or into) photography.
What does photography mean to you?
Photography is one way to realize my ideas (next to illustration and 3D art work). Maybe the strongest. Sometimes I combine all 3 categories in a single piece of artwork.
Please briefly describe your photography style for our readers.
As a good friend of mine said: "You can't hide your roots as an illustrator and graphic artist" My style is always very graphically and striking. I'm not into fancy light setups. I always try to keep it as simple as possible. As I do often sketches as part of the moodboards and
Where do you get inspiration from?
Oh, I use different sources. Reading Comics, visiting galleries and exhibitions. Traveling of course also looking at artwork of other photographers. But that kind of source I didn't use too much. This could lead you into the wrong direction. You always have to follow your own path. If step into the footprints of someone other because you copy the style, you don't leave your own footprints.
Think you in advance what you want in the picture?
Yes. Always! I have an idea in mind, sketch it down and then realize it. But one important part of creativity is to be not too accurate and being a perfectionist. I always allow some kind of "freedom" for my own ideas.
Studio, on location or both?
Both. Some ideas are perfect for a studio where you need a lot of time and no disturbance, but we do much more outside when Spring comes. There are ideas which need a complex background you are not able to build in a studio.
Would you consider yourself a hobbyist or a paid professional?
I'm a paid professional.
What has been your most memorable session and why?
Oh, there are mayn sessions which turned out to be exceptional, but I love to do sessions with a good friend of mine, she is a professional photographer too. We then share the same set and models and I'm always flashed when we compare results. Completely different look and meaning of the content. Such shootings teaching you a lot about yourself and helps you to reflect things you are doing and doing not.
What has been the biggest source of inspiration in your work?
I think paintings, especially those in museums, have the biggest influence on me.
Nikon or Canon? Favorite lens?
I'm a Nikon user, but if I could take images with a saw I would do it. It is just a tool (I also do a lot of work with smartphones).
50mm, 85mm and 24-70mm are my favourite lenses.
What is one piece of advice you would like to offer a new photographer looking to start their own business?
Okay. Be patient! Shoot a lot, and I mean a lot. That is the only way to get better. Don't trust facebook likes.
Take advice from someone who is into photography and not your friend.
What do you think of our new magazine?
Love it! As it shows so many different photographic styles and that is definitely a huge source of inspiration.