Einträge getaggt mit interview

Video for my thesis project “Moment” / staged photography from 2009.

Also interesting: the book and the original layered Photoshop files at The File Art.

New interview with me, now online on the Indian photo portal Fotoflock.com

New Olympus film with me online.

More info here: http://www.fototv.de/blog/special_gro%C3%9Fe_leute_ganz_klein_mit_mareen_fischinger

I have not even watched it myself yet. Other than that, I am currently MIA because our baby boy was born last week and he keeps us insanely happy and busy.

One of my Olympus PEN tutorial films made with foto.tv

I realized too late that nowadays, you can make comments in Acrobat. I still do it the old-fashioned way, as if it were analog paper. Much more personal, too. After all, it was a semi-personal interview that was being transcribed here.

I realized too late that nowadays, you can make comments in Acrobat. I still do it the old-fashioned way, as if it were analog paper. Much more personal, too. After all, it was a semi-personal interview that was being transcribed here.

Interview with Indonesian photography magazine The Light

Just like being a doctor, photography can often be a hereditary profession. Many people are interested in doing photography by the influence of their parents who are a lot further in the process. But of the many people who know photography from the parents, not a lot of them is as successful or even more successful than them.
That said, we would like to use this opportunity to bring to you Mareen Fischinger, a professional photographer who became acquainted with photography through her parents and has even had the taste of the profession of being an art director at an advertising agency. Here are excerpts of our conversation with her.

THE LIGHT: How did you get to know photography from the beginning? Please explain.
MAREEN FISCHINGER: From the very beginning of my life, I have always known my father being the one to take photos with his single lens reflex camera. On weekends, we would lock ourselves in the bathroom and screw in a red bulb, then the magic of photo development began. Our family album looks so much different from my friends’ because of exactly those self-made black and white photos it contains.
It took a couple of years until I actually operated a camera myself. I never even knew snapshot cameras when I was little, and was only used to having that old mechanical one around me. Of course, I was very respectful of my father’s equipment and would not fool around with it.

What interests you in photography?
I am very interested in the way I can shape things to look, the way light completely builds up an image and feeling, together with composition — my main and favorite variables.

You have a communication design education background. Does it helps you on any way to doing photography? Please explain.
It sure does. Looking back to working in an ad agency, I saw how important it was that the art direction or client knew how to communicate. Anything from the conceptional to the technical parts are important to be understood by the photographer, directions must be taken and given between all of those people. I can design, produce and finish an ad etc. from scratch and am flexible to skip parts of the way it usually works from product to ad, if something is missing in the process.
Being more than »just a photographer«, but a photo designer is exactly what I needed. I never experienced regular training on how to be a standard photographer and learned by doing, thus my working process is stripped of conventions, most being from the analog age. Instead, I can just go the most logic way, which often appears surprisingly easy and quick to those used to the old-fashioned way. And it sure does not make it less complete and thoughtful.

Why did you decide to do photography although a communication design graduate usually gets to be a graphic designer/art director for advertising/communication industry. What is more interesting to you, compared to the advertising/communication industry?
To me photography has always been the most interesting part of anything in advertising etc. Even when I was just 17 and interned at an ad agency for a summer, my interests was being as close to the photo-related stuff as possible. But that is just me, luckily.

You shoot anything from fashion to commercial, from conceptual to anything. What do you like doing most? And please explain the fun you have doing each of these?
I often hear that my commercial/lifestyle photography is the strongest, and it is indeed fun – but I like to build up on fashion. Free projects allow me to experimentally set up the light, to play with poses and other unusual things. When a possible client looks at my portfolio, he or she sees what I am capable of and there may be shifts from the fashion/conceptual photography techniques to an assignment.

One word that describes your photos.

What kind of picture deserves to be labeled as »the great one« for you?
It needs to be executed perfectly, but with a little surprising edge.  Something that the viewer did not expect and that makes him or her think twice.

It seems that you usually work with a nice and simple concept but execute it well. Meanwhile so many beginners on photography are interested in the more complex concepts. What’s the thought behind the decision on doing a very nice but simple concept compared to only trying it with something more complex?
You probably know the saying: Less is more. When somebody tries to stuff everything in there, it might look cluttered and the original thought can get lost.

Not all photography amateurs are good at concepting a photo. Share us some tips to learn about concepting a photo & executing it well.
First, you need an idea, maybe coming from something that has inspired you to do something else or better. Then, you need to start thinking of what you need for it. Location? Model? Props? Clothing? Light? and of course the make-up, which is very important. When everyone is into your idea and you have organized dates and locations, take it slow, set up the light with someone while the model gets their make-up. Then don’t be too much of a perfectionist and get through with the poses before everyone gets tired. Post-production is also very important, but it should never replace good light-setting.

We are interested in your blurry time square photo series. Please explain the concept & the thought behind it.
The photographs were a byproduct of a project I was working on in New York in 2006.
An architect, a furniture designer were designing and building a bar in Brooklyn, and I was called into the circle when it came to creating something permanent for the walls in that interior. At the time, I was new to New York and had just moved there weeks ago. We talked about making the bar a place where people who loved the city wanted to go, but at pace and with distance to the actual business. I had taken photos that consisted of a bokeh only the winter before and developed that idea into taking photos of the busiest place in all of NYC: Time Square. To stay away from the actual loudness and neon lights, I went and took many photographs of Times Square. Looking at those, I feel like I am behind a safe and soft layer, taking in the soul of the place without actually being there.
Oh, and the bar got photos of trees and leaves which were out of focus instead.

The number of those interested in doing photography is growing rapidly in quantity. Unfortunately so many beginners are trapped into the same style with their idols. Can you share a thought about what a person who is interested in doing photography should do to become a unique (in a good way) photographer?
I can only speak from my own point. I didn’t care about the big photographers and did what I wanted. I took my camera everywhere I went and annoyed the hell out of my friends and family. I learned about different light situations, about faces and locations and played with compositions a lot before I even began using strobes. This is how I slowly found and am still finding my style.

To jump into professional area, a photographer should have some series of kicking portfolio. How did you create your portfolio that meets the industry standard? Did it cost you a lot of money?
For me, it was not pure jumping in the cold water. I was playing around with photography since my youth and had learned how to work with people, even if they were my friends and family at first, how to do compositions right, how to operate cameras and to edit photos. I did what was necessary for my university, made some websites and brochures for money, but all I did in my free time was photography: For years, I ran a daily photoblog with over 2,000 views a day.
Back then, photoblogs were not yet common and I believe I was seriously one of the first of three people who had one. Of course, it was very popular and google searches put me atop. It was a pleasant but inevitable surprise that people who had found and followed my blog started asking me to do professional photography for them. My first clients were interested in portraits and lifestyle photography, some wanted product photos. All were impressed by the way my photoblog looked. With time, I became less and less proud of it, as I realized how much better I got while I was actually working on jobs, due to the pressure of it being paid assignments.
I started collecting material from said jobs and decided I needed a real website with a more professional look which I programmed myself. Over one or two years years it got improved with the help of a real programmer and finally turned into my current online portfolio, which combines everything I would want from a photographer’s website. The content you can find is the cream of the crop, all of which I got to realize because of what I had done and shown off before. I would call my portfolio a process and development much rather that something a photographer should try to create in a restricted amount of time. And of course I am not done!

(You can download 24/2009, there are some other interesting people in there.)

Interview for JPEOPLE12

(Published on April 1, when the magazine came out.)

The highly professional photo series presented on her website are suggestive and impressive.
The 26-year-old communication design graduate based in Duesseldorf especially amazes her viewers with her “panographs”. Each photo series shows a well known place or building. First she takes a large amount of photos from one point of view and then she puzzles them back together creating colossal mosaic-like collages. It is a technique she coined and established all by herself. The finished works are fascinating sights with an urban flair which have led to a lot of media attention and even wangled an exhibition in Paris for her.
She herself does not want to limit her work to architectural photography though. On the contrary: It is her avowed goal to become a famous photographer like her role model Annie Leibovitz. As that suggests Mareen also shares Leibovitz’ interest people and fashion. And the way she stages both can definitely be a little more extra-vagant, the light a bit more pitiless, the main issue being that it has to be somewhat particular and non-reversible; just the way that we have come to know Mareen’s work by now. At present the young photographer and artist still acts mainly in Berlin and New York. But taking her creative openness into consideration it is more than likely that it won’t take long for things to pick up elsewhere, too. We keep our fingers crossed for her!

Where do you live & why did you decide to live there?
I have lived in Düsseldorf these past five years, moving here when already having started studying design. The city is the capital of the German state North Rhine-Westphalia, though we have less than half a million inhabitants. I do not need every establishment to exist twenty times in my city, two or three is enough and it feels a little more pre-selected than in an actual megacity. Still, Düsseldorf has a great infrastructure and is very central. You can get anything you need and are close to a lot of other cities of importance. What I am still missing is a larger group of the narrow demographic who I can get very comfortable with, but maybe I haven’t looked closely enough. Berlin and New York both can give me those people — but at the moment, I feel like one in a million there.

Where do you feel at home?
I see myself as a fast-adapting individual. Be it a place or a practice, I like understanding and getting into new things, making the best out of the new experience and working it in with my current self.

Describe your individual style/work.
Since I have a general design background, I claim to have an overview and am able to take over a large role in every project. I can go from idea to art direction to building up and taking the picture to finding the best fit to post-production and publication. Of course, I am glad to take help where I can and work with an assistant, make-up artists and stylists, models, actors or dances and maybe graphic designers. It is the whole package.

What methods, tools or techniques do you use?
Brain, eye & hands are my most important tools. The equipment I use to create photos in my studio or on location are strong strobes, a nice digital camera, comfortable photo editing software and my computers.

Why are you doing what you do right now?
I am trying to express what comes to me from inspiration & thought and make it into something that is visible to everybody. Inside me, I have a strong need to talk to other people and the visual form is the most pleasant for me.

How did you get started?
As a kid, I drew with pencils, got into painting as I grew and at around around 15, the camera had me: I was referred to as the girl who always brings her camera. I still painted a bit until around age 19 or 20, but then photography took over completely.

What were you doing when aged 15?
I was getting ready to leave my country and spend a year in the U.S., where I found unexpected appreciation and spur for my work at a very talent-oriented and modern high school.

What/who are your influences?
Oh, I wish I could name someone here — because it can be anything at any time. The strongest influence was that of the own pressure I put myself under, that of trying to be good at what I loved doing. This light and congenial pressure originated from being around people I loved and my education. It should be easy to understand for people with a similar mindset.

What/who inspires you at the moment?
I am inspired by the future, by nature and man’s elaborate accommodation in it. And the behavior of individuals — but then again seen in general, if this makes any sense… I try to focus on situations that make you look, that make you as a viewer stop and transfer them to your own life.

How do you come up with your ideas?
By looking around me and taking everything in. Listening to people talk, and living life. Sometimes I can transfer my own life or a series of eventsinto the picture. I also have friends located everywhere who I can call and talk about topics. That always helps when putting one and one together. I then sketch and look for material of existence to try to make something new.

What would you like to do that you are not doing at the moment?
I would like to travel around the world more and also see places that are said to be a little too dangerous.

What stops you from doing it?
I don’t want to go all by myself, but can’t plan far ahead right now because of an ever-changing project situation at the studio. Most people I would travel with are either in the same situation, need to plan further ahead or aren’t interested in the same places as myself.

What is beautiful?
Sunlight, which I am definitely deprived of, a nice caffè latte, the feeling of respect & trust.

What is ugly?
Small talk, empty phrases, greed and gossip. Oh, and some sea food dishes.

Describe your typical day.
I get up at around eight and have a nice latte that I take to my desk with me. Here, I go through email correspondence etc. My assistant Stefan or our intern comes in at nine and we start working on whatever project is in the pipeline, it might not be the same for everyone. If there is a photoshoot, we set up that and do it in the studio or where ever else. For lunch, we sit together and talk; there isn’t a certain time for a break, and we know when we need one. A couple of lattes later, the official workday ends whenever we feel like it can. It naturally gets more quiet towards the night. The pleasure of being your own boss and working project-based is that you can work when you got the power to do it and take time off when it is needed.

Describe a perfect moment.
Barbeque at the beach with friends as the sun is setting (I try to do that every so often) and sitting outside on the studio balcony that is located in the middle of a city but has the flair of a Southern-European vacation home, with a good read.

What was the best thing you ever did?
Listening to my intentions even though everything and everyone else says I am doing the wrong thing and then seeing it work out.

What do you like to spend money on?
Things that make life and work more comfortable. What would you never spend money on? Things that make nothing better and are merely status symbols.

You could live without?
No more reoccuring headaches, please.

You have to have?
Space and open areas, as in rooms and decoration, but also as in personal space and privacy.

What kind of people do you find interesting?
People are interesting to me when they have the ability to create something new out of what they take in from their environment, when they can make the fast connection back and then actually bring whatever they talk about to life — possibly in unconventional ways.

What are you wearing right now?
Sounds like a kinky phone sex question! But to easily defuse the situation: I am wearing a light beige cardigan over a bright red top that matches the chair I sit in almost too well. Skinny black pants, glasses. Imagine a day in the mind of someone else.

Who would you like to be?
Annie Leibovitz, for her vision and the power to make so many story-telling photographs come to life.

Any special events you are going to show up at during the next couple of months?
My vernissage in Paris. Galerie Bailly Contemporain is showing most of my Panography work from 2006 until today, including many new pieces. Most other plans of mine are made at short notice.

Five albums you love:
Bon Iver — For Emma, Forever ago
Francis & the Lights — A Modern Promise
Ólafur Arnalds — Eulogy For Evolution
Sophie Hunger — Monday’s Ghost
The XX — XX

Four books/zines you like:
Gregory Crewdson — Beneath the Roses
Franz Kafka — Das Werk
Ayn Rand — The Fountainhead
various design magazines, e.g. 125 Magazine

Three websites you have bookmarked:
My flexible to-do list at teuxdeux.com, the dict.cc dictionary and doodle.ch for easy scheduling.

Two movies that impressed you:
Das Leben der Anderen (The Life of Others), 2006 / The Game, 1997

Your favourite artist, designer or photographer:
I say Erwin Olaf, although I don’t like everything he does just because it is his work. ▲

Jade Macdonald (UK): »An Interview with Mareen Fischinger«

Mareen Fischinger is a Düsseldorf based photographer. You can see her website here, or follow her tumblr here.

Not only is she a damn good photographer, she is also a very lovely person as she took some time out of her day today to let me interview her for my univeristy project. I thought I’d share it here so you can all see how nice she is, and it’s a pretty interesting and insightful interview about photography as a business.

So, how long have you been working as a professional photographer?

I started to depend solely on my income as a photographer while I was still in design school, that was in 2006. I had been working as a freelance photographer for about 2 years before that, taking photos for small companies and giving out licenses for my personal projects at times. The big step was a well-known German communications company that called me up one day for my photographic services because they liked my work that they had found on the internet.

When did you first begin to gain an interest in photography?

I have been interested in visual arts ever since I was a child and wanted to do something with it in my career. Graphic design, drawing, typography, photography, film, television etc. — my studies in communication design (at the University of Applied Sciences in Düsseldorf) where I earned a degree in Communications Design in 2009 combined all this pretty well and I was able to focus on photography in my free time and eventually professionally.

How much of your time would you say you spent on your personal work compared to your professional work?

It has been 70:30 lately, mainly due to my exhibitions, but at busy times or when I feel little inspiration, my personal work can drop down to 10%. After a while of too much client work I usually get the urge to do something personal though.

How do you normally go about getting an exhibition set up and getting places to exhibit your work?

I have been lucky so far and the places/galleries/curators have approached me. But once something is seriously getting started, I am giving my very best and make sure all the work from my side is getting done as perfectly as possible and on time. Nothing is being left to chance about the creation, production, logistics etc., so that we can be sure nobody is disappointed

Would you say there is a lot of cross over between your personal work and professional, or do you find that due to the nature of the professional work you get you find it hard to be as creative as you would like and yet still please the client?

There sure can be some frustrations, especially when I hear that a portrait is too artificial-looking or too experimental for the client. They booked me for the look that I create, but when they suddely see themselves in “that light”, they are often overwhelmed and are awkward about the photos. Therefore, I do what I like and then take back the intensity of my outcome by 50% most of the time before I show the client.

How often would you say clients approach you for work?

I get asked at least once a week to do something for someone or some company. It can be that they only want a price to compare with other photographers though. I don’t think that having the cheapest photographer win is a good way of decision-making. So it doesn’t always work out.

Do you often find that you are undercut in this way by other photographers? For what I’ll assume is poorer quality work?

Oh definitely, and there are probably a couple of clients who might not see the difference, some of them at the moment they book someone, thinking it will be alright once they get the pictures, some even when the photographs are done. I have had it happen several times that the first demographic of clients return after a couple of months and tell me that the first photographer was a bad decision and if we could try again. It isn’t always a good way to save money. I have heard that in Switzerland the lowest and the highest offer are not being considered when finding the right photographer for an assignment.Also, a lot of smaller companies have somebody in their family with a camera. They tend to “win” the client, but then again, usually there has to be a second attempt with a real photographer.

How much do you normally charge a client?

It always depends on the size of the business and the use of my photos. Let’s say a large agency does something for a world-wide brand, of course they will be charged a lot more than a small business that needs portraits of their CEO.When I am personally interested in putting something in action, it is also more likely to cost a little less or even nothing at all.And then, the amount of workers and locations/objects involved needs to be compensated. It can vary of course, again, depending on the overall budget.

How long would you say it takes to negotiate a contract with a client? How long on average does each client give you to produce the images?

Contract negotiation is pretty quick, it is mostly a question of the amount of money they have to pay. Clients tend to have an idea of how much that is and if we are far apart, they look at someone else fast. Production time: It is crazy! People almost always want the work to be finished instantly. They often forget that there is a lot of work once the photo material is collected. I find that conservative and larger companies are less stressful about it. Unexperienced designers etc. are the ones who tend to believe that they don’t need to waste their thoughts on the photoshoot until it is almost overdue. They rely on the photographer and are disappointed when he or she isn’t available and done immediately.

What happens in an average day at work?

We meet at around 9 and start with emailing while we have the first coffee and talk about what is due soon. Then we work on the editing of those photographs or the organization of a photo shoot or whatever press work is required at the moment. If there is a photo shoot on that day, we usually have everything already packed the evening before and leave to do that. After a shoot, the cards backed up on the computer and the first round of edits start while we unpack and recharge the equipment.

How many people do you work with on each shoot?

At a shoot, I have my assistant Stefan who knows everything by heart and inside out, sometimes a second one as support. They carry equipment and set it up after we talk about how I would like it to be. Then I do not work without a make-up/hair artist, no matter how small the assignment. I does make so much of a difference. A stylist is not always required, but a great luxury that I would like to have as much as possible. I used to do that myself, but I would rather like to concentrate on my profession and give that responsibility to someone who knows what they are doing. Models of course. And then, when I have an intern, he or she helps and learns, sometimes gets to shoot behind the scenes stuff. Then I take the pictures, with little tweaks here and there.Before and after a shoot, my permanent assistant and intern are there for people to talk to, organize and filter information, but also to finish up the skin of models (I do my own post-production) etc. and get files in order.At the moment, I am still the one who negotiates and writes invoices, except when it is about art, my gallery takes over that part.I also have an agent, but we are fairly new to each other. She carrries my leather portfolio book and has been taking it to agencies for the last couple of months. Once this gets rolling, she will be in charge of pricing etc.

Is there anything you know about the nature of the business side of photography that you wish you knew when you were first starting out?

Yes! Almost every time we do a photo shoot, the client suddenly comes up with twice the stuff/people to photograph that what was in our agreed quote. And they always assume it is included! Often, I do it anyway because we don’t want to argue or fight with them right there, but I do have to say “stop!” sometimes.

Thanks so much Mareen!


(via summerclouds)

I really liked the questions (some thought was put into them) and this might be a good read for other young photographers who are just starting out.

Watch the »Panography« video!

interview: Felix von Pless
director of photography: Johannes-Christian Michel
assistant camera: Stefan Tüshaus
edit/post-production: Mareen Fischinger

Read the (substantially overlapping) interview:

Q: Miss Fischinger, when visiting your online portfolio, one can find a variety of photos created for corporate and editorial projects. In addition, you expose your weakness for fashion photography.
What was the appeal to engage yourself in this artistic area, which seems to act as a direct contrast to your other work?

Mareen: I do not call engaging myself in the artistic, documenting or scientific areas a conflict of interest with my commercial assignments. Whenever I work on photographic projects, I plan everything from the concept to its actual realisation, be it for a client, or myself.
Naturally, fashion photography allows me to try out more experimental lighting setups and abstract poses than any annual report would! I can use fashion photography to try new ideas and play with shapes and colors, too. Of course, the clothing designer also needs to be satisfied, and I have to make some compromises.
Then there are my personal projects. Be it people being captured as they are hanging upside down, empty shopping temples, blurry shots of crowded places – or my Panographs. Most of these projects have been ongoing for years, as has Panography.
I have been working on Panography for almost four years now, but it wasn’t until early 2009, that Galerie Bailly contacted me about a possible exhibition. It felt good to experience how the project has become interesting and complex enough for a solo exhibition; which also encouraged me to create more from my current standpoint. Meaning, I set the standards that I had established before and created more Panographs from that basis in order to exhibit the concept in visual form. I am lucky because being treated like an artist gives me even more freedom. The gallery lets me decide many things concerning this exhibition because they trust my intuition and will to experiment.

Q: Similar forms of photo collage were created by renowned artists such as David Hockney in his »Pictures«. Roughly speaking, does this form of art reinvent itself in your Panographs?

Mareen: I would like to disconnect David Hockney’s »Pictures« and my Panographs, because I never saw it as me picking up where he finished off. I am aware that Hockney took several little photos and later joined them as a composite or collage. He often used various exposures which were correct for certain frames, which gave the final composite a high-dynamic-range look. Overall, his pieces all differ from one another, as he experimented with different styles in 1982-83.
David Hockney also went around his subjects to highlight them from different angles, making them cubistic, whereas I stand in one place and take in the atmosphere and space around me. I am a little person in the large scene, not freezing time, but highlighting passages of change within the environment as it happens. Be it two people meeting up, them arguing, somebody I document at work or just a passing train that shows in some frames and is gone in the next.
You can zoom into my finished Panographs and find interesting details or developments in every frame, most of them could be printed out as singles and are able to stand by themselves. Sometimes I do not use every frame I shoot because certain parts change a lot and are being photographed so often, they would overlap and become blurry.
But, as much as I highlight the differences, I don’t want to say too much of what I don’t do, as I am already looking forward to trying something new with my Panographs soon. Just haven’t executed it yet.

Q: Many of your pictures show places in your chosen hometown, Düsseldorf, Germany. Do you try to confuse the perceptions we have gotten used to, in order for us to experience our own environment in a brand-new way?

Mareen: I have always been told that I have the ability to capture objects in a different way than how people would normally perceive them. When I was younger, I never understood why the viewer felt that way. Today, I know that this has to do with a different approach I take to my environment. Naturally, instead of taking everything for granted, I want to know why and how things came to be; how everything interacts and develops. Additionally, taken out of the context and function of everyday life, things appear stronger or weaker, and I can support that by making them my subjects.

Q: You call your Panographs »false« photography. Why is that?

Mareen: I do call my Panographs »false« photographs for a reason. It is a matter of my pieces not being how one would normally describe a photograph. We expect photographs to have a set frame and composition, to freeze a moment in time – whereas here, by the arrangement of parts, I create shapes and shifts, lines become round and crooked, as the eyes would actually see them when they wander in rooms or on surfaces. It ist the brain that corrects and puts everything in perspective. My panoramic graphics are supposed to highlight that bridge between eye and brain.
This means the image is already a super perspective, a temporal and spherical image laid out in two dimensions, large enough to immerse yourself in.

→ invitation: http://blog.mareenfischinger.com/post/266376508/
→ project: http://mareenfischinger.de/projects/panography/
→ Only seven more days until the vernissage!
+ If you liked this video, you might also want to check out the one I made for my thesis project (»Moment«) in summer 2009.

slanted diploma thesis interview

slanted is rather a typography site. oh well.


(german only, sorry. but there is another (english) interview that will come out in the next weeks.)

»in the name of love«

a production company for the popular channel sat1 filmed our team do a fast photo shoot for the protagonist.
this is the part of the thing that was on tv last night. it is pretty short.

jenny is the one hidden behind pia (a.k.a. punthip, who loved this thing and everyone), the make-up artist. maybe they did that because they had no paper for her to sign.

and yea, pretty weird how they made up stuff about us, even when it is positive.
that »funny guy« is supposed to be stefan and of course i don’t shoot models every day (some days are just panographs) ;)

my back. when you have a mic, you gotta be careful what you say about whom. even when you think it is muted. good thing i am aware of this.

my back. when you have a mic, you gotta be careful what you say about whom. even when you think it is muted. good thing i am aware of this.

photo & tv

photo & tv

Panography in DigitalPHOTO magazine (2007)

→ for archival’s sake:

An article about Panography in DigitalPHOTO of November 2007, including a tutorial by myself.

Unfortunately, only in German. But if you like an English read, there is a Photojojo Tutorial from 2006: »Panoramas on Steroids«

Panografie der Düsseldorfer U-Bahn-Station »Oberbilker Markt«, zusammengesetzt aus 37 Einzelfotos, aufgenommen mit einer 35mm-Optik. Abbildungen der Station mit freundlicher Genehmigung der Rheinbahn AG.

Text: Wibke Pfeiffer, Workshop, Fotos und Bildbearbeitung: Mareen Fischinger

Das kreative Projekt

Stehen Sie auch manchmal vor einem imposanten Gebäude und wünschen sich dabei, Sie könnten mit Ihren Fotos alles einfangen, was Sie mit Ihren Augen zu sehen vermögen? Die Fotografin Mareen Fischinger entwickelte hierzu für sich die Technik der Panografie – dabei handelt es sich um kaleidoskopisch anmutende Super-Weitwinkel-Panoramen in Form von Foto-Patchworks. Wie auch Sie zum Panografen werden, erfahren Sie von ihr persönlich in diesem Kreativ-Projekt.


Panografien bestehen aus dutzenden, zum Teil hunderten von Aufnahmen einer einzigen Szene. Die daraus wachsenden Fotocollagen geben in ihrer Gesamtheit der Einzelteile besonders eindrucksvoll wieder, was wir sehen, wenn wir gerade nicht durch den Sucher blicken. Mareen Fischinger begann Anfang vergangenen Jahres mit ersten Experimenten zu diesem Thema. Aus dem Bedürfnis heraus, die Realität einmal anders und vor allem umfangreicher einzufangen, entwickelte die Fotografi n und Designerin aus Düsseldorf Schritt für Schritt ihre eigene, sehr ästhetische Methode, Einzelaufnahmen »von Hand« am Computer zu Super-Weitwinkel-Panoramen zusammenzusetzen – eine Technik, die sich inzwischen unter dem von ihr erdachten Namen »Panografie« verbreitet und seit Mitte 2006 bereits diverse Nachahmer gefunden hat: »Panography«, so die internationale Schreibweise, ist auch der Name einer von Mareen gegründeten flickr-Gruppe, die zur Zeit um die 150 Mitglieder zählt. Seit einem auf der Webseite photojojo.com veröffentlichten Workshop erfuhr ihre Technik rund um die Welt positive Aufmerksamkeit und fand in Fotoblogs aus Frankreich, England, den Vereinigten Staaten und sogar Japan Erwähnung.

Wie alles begann

Fast könnte man sagen, die Methode entstand aus einer technischen Not heraus. Da Fischingers Canon-Software nicht den Intervall-Aufnahme-Modus ihres Macs unterstützte, den sie ursprünglich für eine Serienaufnahme von ein und derselben Ansicht verwenden wollte, begann sie in schnellen Abständen den Ausblick aus ihrem Fenster zu fotografi eren, bewegte und drehte dabei zum Test die Kamera in alle Richtungen, spielte zunächst noch mit den Einstellungen und dem Zoom. Da sie nicht mit dem Stativ gearbeitet hatte und die Aufnahmen zudem unterschiedliche Belichtungen aufwiesen, fand sie kein geeignetes Auto-Stitching Programm, mit dem sich die Bilder zufriedenstellend zusammenfügen ließen. So fing sie an, die Bilder halbtransparent und manuell in Photoshop übereinander zu legen. Das arrangierte Ergebnis mit den noch sichtbaren, sich überlappenden Kanten gefiel ihr so gut, dass sie nicht mehr zu einer hundertprozentigen Deckkraft der Ebenen zurückkehrte.
Genau das macht den besonderen Reiz der Panografien aus: Anders als bei herkömmlichen Panoramatechniken, bei denen die Aufnahmen möglichst übergangslos und meist automatisch von einer Software zusammengefügt werden, bleiben bei der von Mareen entwickelten Methode alle Einzelaufnahmen mitsamt der Kanten in der Gesamtkomposition erhalten. Sie werden beim Puzzeln im Idealfall nur in Position gedreht und einander in Farbe, Kontrast und Helligkeit angepasst, nie jedoch verzerrt oder anderweitig manipuliert. Teil der unverwechselbaren Optik sind daher auch die nicht immer ganz perfekten Überlagerungen, die sich von ganz allein ergeben und in keinem Fall wegretuschiert werden. Die Ergebnisse sind gerade deshalb so faszinierend, weil sie nicht verbergen, wie sie entstanden sind, sondern diesen Prozess
offensichtlich werden lassen.

Raum und Zeit

Zur spannungsvollen Wiedergabe des dreidimensionalen Raumes gesellt sich zudem ein weiterer interessanter Aspekt: Die Zeitkomponente. Zwischen der ersten und letzten Aufnahme wird bei einer solchen Vielzahl von nacheinander erstellten Aufnahmen immer eine gewisse Zeitspanne liegen. Bewegungen innerhalb der Szene und andere zeitliche sowie dynamische Abläufe werden so automatisch mit eingefangen. Im Beispiel aus dem Workshop sind dies die ein- und ausfahrenden Bahnen sowie die umsteigenden Passanten. Jede Panografie macht daher nicht nur den Raum, sondern auch die dort verstreichende Zeit greifbarer.


Ganz neu wurde natürlich auch hier das Rad nicht erfunden. Zum Teil erinnern die Arbeiten der Panografen an die Werke David Hockneys, des britischen Künstlers, der bereits in den 80er Jahren Landschaften und Porträts in Form von Fotocollagen einfing. Hockney allerdings arbeitete dabei natürlich noch mit Abzügen von analogen Fotografien, oft auch mit Polaroids. Zum Teil nutzte er auch deutlich unterschiedliche Zoomeinstellungen, sodass seine Ergebnisse kubistische Züge aufweisen konnten.
Auf diese eher abstrakte Herangehensweise verzichtet die Panografie größtenteils. Den meisten Arbeiten wohnt ein künstlerischer Realismus inne, der unter anderem aber davon lebt und profi tiert, dass Fischingers Methode die Idee der Panorama-Collage um die Möglichkeiten der inzwischen vorherrschenden, modernen Technologie erweitert hat. Gerade die durch Photoshop zum leichter einsetzbaren Stilmittel gewordenen Transparenzen machen die Panografi en zu dem, was sie sind. In unserem Workshop erfahren Sie von Mareen Fischinger, wie Sie selbst in nicht allzu vielen Schritten derartige Kunstwerke erstellen können. Wenn Sie Hockney mögen, werden Sie diese Technik lieben.

→ Tutorial


Box: Panografie

Panografien sind digital erstellte Weitwinkel-Bilder, die aus vielen verschiedenen, in diversen Winkeln aufgenommenen, individuellen Fotos manuell zusammengesetzt werden. Sie vermitteln den Eindruck, man stände selbst inmitten des abgebildeten Ortes, schaute sich um und würde die eingefangenen Bilder unterbewusst im Kopf zu einem großen Ganzen zusammenfügen. »Dabei handelt es sich nicht um Panoramen im eigentlichen Sinne. Vielmehr ist das Ergebnis etwas, das einer neuen Fotografie gleichkommt, gesehen aus vielen verschiedenen Blickwinkeln«, so Mareen Fischinger über die Idee zur Namensgebung.

Box: David Hockney

David Hockney wurde am 09. Juli 1937 in Bradford, Yorkshire geboren. Der britische Künstler lebte lange Zeit in Kalifornien und kehrte 2000 wieder nach Bridlington in England zurück. Er zählt zu den einflussreichsten Künstlern des 20. Jahrhunderts. Neben expressionistischen Experimenten, Pop Art Themen und realistischeren Ölgemälden arbeitete Hockney auch mit Fotos und arrangierte große Zahlen davon in kubistisch anmutenden Collagen zu bestimmten Themen, darunter Landschaften und Porträts.

Photoshop Creative Magazine (Jan 2007)

→ for archival’s sake

Article about Panography in this magazine from Great Britain.

Panography… taking panorama to its limits!

Text by Zoe Mutter

There’s an innovative artistic technique that has recently caught our eye called ‘Panography’. Panographic shots are wide-angle hand-made pictures containing dozens of photos of a scene that when joined together, from a larger picture. This lets you capture an extensive landscape more easily.

This technique was discovered by Mareen Fischinger when she was looking for a different approach to capturing reality. »Since my Canon software did not support the Interval Shooting mode on my Mac, I started crazily clicking my Window view while moving around my camera as a test, while figuring out if the settings or zoom need to be fixed for the best results,« said Mareen. »I did not finde an acceptable auto-stitching tool and started overlaying the pictures as half transparent, so I could see the overlapping edges. I liked the look when I was done arranging, and never went back to hundert percent visibility of the layers.« When creating the effect, the single images aren’t skewed or rescaled or cropped. Instead, they are overlaid over a white base colour, so it’s important that the images all have similar contrast and colour values to help you match them up.

The first real panograph was taken when Mareen was walking to Düsseldorf’s most photographed place, a bridge on Königsallee. »People must have thought I was out of my mind, taking about 300 pictures within five minutes,« said Mareen. The technique went on to produce so much interest that she has created its own community on the Flickr website. Talking about the naming of the group and technique, Mareen said: »I simply called it panography, because it isn’t quite a panorama, but it makes up something like a new photograph, seen out of many angles.«

At the moment the group has 87 members and nearly 200 panographic images. Some members of the group have likened the style and method used to David Hockney’s work and overlaid Polaroid images.

(on flickr, typed up by Jens Nikolaus)