Interview with photographer #24: Eberhard Grossgasteiger (Italy, Nature&Landscape Photography)Artem Beliaikin
Name: Eberhard Grossgasteiger
Location: South Tyrol (the northernmost province of Italy) and there in the northernmost municipality!
Gear: Canon eos 5d iii, Tamron SP 45mm F/1.8 Di VC USD because of its Min. Object Distance [m] 0.29m, I often take photos whit the Canon EF 16-35mm f/4L IS US and the Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 L IS USM
Experience: Basics learned analog photography more than 30 years ago, digital photography I have been working intensively since 2017.
When did you start shooting and how did this love for photography happen? What is your view about photography?
I started taking analog photos in my early 20s. At that time, I learned all the basics of photography from scratch and after about 5 years I decided to take a break! :-). At that time, I bought a very expensive analogue 35mm camera from Leica in order to be able to take good pictures for all emergencies without having to carry the heavy DSLR equipment with me.
I used it maybe 20 times in 25 years! 2 years ago, in April I offered this camera for sale and a prospective customer exchanged his new Canon EOS 70D with a 50mm lens for my old Leica. He was a collector and Leica freak and I have been photographing again regularly since this exchange! Cool, isn’t it? I couldn’t let a new DSLR get dusty in the living room … :-)!
Apart from photography, tell me about your hobbies and interests?
So, what’s my favorite thing to do? I love mountain biking and am addicted to it, no kidding … 🙂 I love my family, like chilling, hiking, drinking a beer with cool friends, chatting about God and the world and meeting old people! They inspire and ground me, try it! I like to drink a good red wine and worship Italian food!
Which genre of photography do you like/practice and why?
I only photograph nature, landscape and mountains! Why I only do that, I would have to ask myself! This is surely also the case because I live in the middle of a paradise of natural beauty and I have the best knowledge of nature photography of all genres! In nature photography I simply like the fact that the same place is always different on another day, in different weather, in sunshine, in rain! It is always a challenge to paint with light and shadows, to create a picture that other people like!
The great art of a good nature photographer is to reproduce the mood during the shooting in the development process in the dark room. My Credos, if anyone is interested :-):
SIMPLICITY IS ESSENTIAL PHOTOGRAPHY
I think the pursuit of perfected simplicity is the key to good photography Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication; nothing is more challenging!
Almost 90% of photographers find it hard to earn money out of photography. Any tips that might help photographers to earn money?
What can I say? For me too; but for me personally it is not the most important thing. When I sell a photo, I always let the buyer decide for himself what he wants to pay me. I always tell them to make me a donation on pexels.com and mostly I get more than I expected. That’s why you don’t seem arrogant and who can make a living as a hobby photographer?
My tip: Try to find your own style, photograph regularly and with good equipment, appreciate the small or large amounts of your buyers and by constantly improving your photography you also get orders from more affluent customers.
What mistakes did you make when you started taking pictures?
Save money when buying a good lens! Nothing is more frustrating than a bad kit lens or standard zoom of horrible quality! First, you’ll never understand why good images are bad and the basics of photography always remain a mystery. Try to understand the depth of field and the bokeh with a bad lens! Any cheapest 50mm lens is better than a zoom kit crap! That was my cardinal mistake!
Which photo are you currently most proud of? Tell us a story about this photo please.
Hard to say, but if I have to give an answer, then it is this photo.
I would say it somehow contains all my credos of simplicity in photography. It was the right moment for the shot (the fog gives free exactly what it needs to compose the picture), the image is sharp, the colors are not over saturated, and the mood of the shot was just like in the picture! It also confirms my conviction that a good photographer doesn’t always have to be at the hotspots of nature but must perceive the simply beautiful things in everyday life around him and capture them photographically beautiful.
What do you do to keep motivated, and not lose your passion for photography?
If I can’t take a picture for a day, or if I forgot the camera at home and I see something extraordinary to photograph on the way, it’s like a symptom of lost happiness for me. Can a person live without happiness …?
I am addicted to photography, no more and no less! 🙂 An addict doesn’t need to motivate himself; he just needs to be careful not to overdo it. Fortunately, I have my wife and a job to do. 🙂
Fun aside, it’s not that bad, but a life without photography would make my life emptier.
Why are you giving away your photos on Pexels/Unsplash?
• because I like to see who likes my photography
• to create photographic networks
• to make my photography known
• to find my style
• to inspire and delight other people
• I love the feeling of happiness when positive reactions to my photography reach me
• to improve my photography in general
• maybe someday get a giant photographic job.
Light, decisive moment, content, ambiance, a good gear, according to you which is the most essential element in photography?
I am convinced that all components together make up the overall success. At the right moment the right light with good equipment together with photographic competence make an excellent photo. When we analyze this summary, we concluded that everything is equally important.
My subjective opinion is that good lenses make a lot of difference to taking good photos and to learn and understand photography properly.
My tip: There are different platforms on the Internet for buying used top lenses and cameras. Buy there, I made very good experiences with it and saved a lot of money.
The best address: https://mpb.com – (You decide if you want to advertise or not ). Mpb.com is reliable!
How do you promote yourself as photographer?
I post regularly on unsplash, pexels and as well on Instagram. There I try to publish good quality and position my style. I don’t do any direct or indirect promotion anywhere else.
I am currently building my own website. Let’s see how I can position it intelligently. For me actually is it simply a fulfilling hobby and I must also say that I have not yet seriously asked myself the question for a professional promotion. Any advice?
Share your goal in photography?
Asked about the Promoting, it will be to tackle this concretely in order to make my hobby economical. In photography my greatest endeavor at the moment is to create my own style homogeneously and unmistakably.
Is there a photo you dream of taking?
It would be a dream to do a tandem-parachute jump or a tandem-paraglider flight every day 2 times for one month at the places I still must choose. During parachute jumps or paragliding flights, I would take excessive pictures of course!
Do you know where your next mission or project will be?
I will travel to Val di Fiemme, a Dolomite valley in the neighboring province of Trentino, for an assignment to photograph the lights of Fiemme and the woods of Fiemme.
Kindly share top five Instagram account everybody should follow?
@buchstabenhausen (my favorite photographer), @unsplash, @minimalmood, @earthescope, @pexels
Final words of wisdom you would like to share?
Always remain curious, try to judge everything as pragmatically and objectively as possible and let your heart and humanity decide in an unsolvable situation.
For photography, my advice is: Don’t try to find the most unusual place or motif but try to capture what surrounds you in nature so uniquely that others like it!
Learn Photoshop or Lightroom from a Scratch! I’m not talking here about other photo editing programs either, because I think that sooner or later you can’t avoid these two as photographers and then the switch effort becomes much bigger and more exhausting. Whoever knows Photoshop or Lightroom will never need, use or want another program again!
And I think that is not only my subjective opinion. In the photographic workflow the post-processing with programs like Photoshop, Lightroom etc. is the most important part for a satisfying result!
A photo must be beautiful, aesthetic and harmonious, but it must not necessarily reflect the original mood during the shooting. A different blue or a not oversaturated red are often more beautiful than in the original shot. Once you understand what you can do with Photoshop do manipulate lights, shadows, colors and moods you are addicted to perfection and harmony in image design.
So, use Photoshop correctly, a picture doesn’t change its message, but makes it more beautiful. Do you understand what I mean?
Thanks a lot Eberhard! I wish you the most juicy shots!