Der Elite Model Look Austria 2011 sucht ein neues Gesicht – vielleicht dein Sprungbrett in eine große Modelkarriere?
Monthly Archives : April 2011
Music means nearly everything & music is able to do a lot of things. From deep emotions of the heart to absolute party mood… For the latter part contribution is made by the two Austrians Michael Germany & Philipp aka the “Pleasure Boys”. Their philosophy: “We don’t take ourselves too seriously & therefore the entertainment factor comes before the real truth”. And I have to say that after the interview I really liked this approach.
Hey guys. How are you & where are you at the moment?
We are very well. We’re just sitting at the dinner table in a block house on an island in the baltic sea. There is complete darkness for almost 2 weeks now & we really enjoy the relaxed hippie lifestyle. This weekend we’re back to Vienna again. We love this city very much. Especially now that it’s getting warmer & the old ladies prefer the sunny “Stadtpark” over a pastry in the cafe “Aida”.
Of course I googled you guys for research purposes & came across the “Pleasure Boys” that are not holding back on stage. Did that happen to you as well? :)
We do nearly everything for Club Mate! The other ruthless pictures arose as it was very hot in that room.
I have to confess that your press text has confused me slightly. Please help me!? :)
Our press text is to be understool between the lines. It reflects our musical influences over the years. We don’t take ourselves too seriously & therefore the entertainment factor comes before the real truth. In reality hardly anyone is bothered which village you were born in, which clubnights you played or which famous DJ’s you did the warm up for. The only thing counting for us & needing to be “real” is the sound.
Michael Germany – Philipp Herbst – those are the two names behind the “Pleasure Boys”. Tell us a little bit about you…
We are always there for our friends & listen to them. We are interested in people & like to indulge in long conversations with like-minded guys. We are about DJ culture. We’d like to keep up & carry on the spirit that started back then with Dub Plates in very small releases and the so-called Crate Digging. We want to keep this up in today’s digital DJ world. To us it is important to bring music that gets our pulses racing to the people. We are proud to amaze people with tracks that are far off the the Beatport mainstream or that have unfortunately been “forgotten” over the years. Every three weeks there is a new Pleasure Boys mix “tape”. Others have their flyers on parties, we have our mix cd’s. For free of course, burnt by ourselves & “stamped” by hand. In other words our version of the reminicense of the white labels from back then.
Recently you played in the viennese club “Pratersauna” at “Club Pompadour” – how was it? Did you enjoy it? :)
Chavvy and bouncy. Roots accompanied with a truckload of love!
“Club Pompadour” is a well established party row within the vienese club scene that has been booking high quality artists for many years. For this reason we were very honoured to play there & we would like take to thank the organisers again at this point for the oportunity.
Where would u like to see yourself most in 5 years time?
To be honest we’d love to be on a farm in Kitzbuhel (Western Austria) with a Hansi Hinterseer (a german folklore star that retired onto a farm)- lifestyle. We also play lotto, say “yes” to the “Joker” (another game by the austrian lottery) & believe in luck!
If I got it right you are a fairly fresh/new project?
Brand new! First & foremost comes the music for the people & especially the tracks that one liked back in the ski-course-disco & never since heard in the “Club Context”. We concentrate on current up to date tracks of house & techno as well as classics from the 90′s, mixed with golden era hip hop & eurodance. Everything that has soul is served.
Do you take music seriously or do you see music more as entertainment that is supposed to be enjoyable?
It’s a melange/mix of seriousness & self-ironic boygroup – homoerotic!
What does your speech on soundcloud mean?
This is a speech about the Pleasure Boys. Spoken by Richard Klein aka main project leader Knotzl, nearly Eurovision winner & our idol for more than 10 years.
How did you two get together?
We were born on the same day, in the same year from the same woman. You can’t always choose but we learnt to love each other. A tale of true brotherhood !
Do you produce yourselves? If not – are you planning to?
One half only produces sub-base-lines. Music that can literally be felt all over your body. Mostly there is not enough time to add other music instruments next to the day job…
Your current facebook-status?
“When I see the pub from the inside, I ask myself where Ms Spira (a well known austrian presenter) sits!”
Many thanks for your time!
current mixes can be found on soundcloud pages:
Interview by Christine Guggenberger
Translation by Martin Gersely
Damon Hall Booth from NYC, calling himself a „happy part-time photographer“ told us that the way he fell into photography was a little bit of an accident. Inspired by watching a friend taking pictures in Amsterdam he bought his first camera when he returned back home. Then he spent months taking pictures of anything in front of him.
Nowadays his inspiration comes from: „Life. NYC. Hip Hop. Street fashion. Bad fashion. My daydreams. My nightmares. Just about anywhere. But I like to think my end result is never showing a direct connection to any inspiration other than life itself.“
Tell us about your person…
My name is Damon Hall Booth. I work at an advertising agency in downtown NYC – in the studio, where we do different elements of production for the agency. My agency happens to be the biggest in the world, so you can imagine that it can get rather busy at times…
So you are a fulltime photographer? How do you fell into photography?
I am a happy part time photographer. I only shoot once or twice a month. The way I fell into photography was a little bit of an accident… 10 years ago I was working at my agency and as a hobby I was producing music on the side. My girlfriend at the time was very possessive and she found a way to convince me that laying in bed with her was more beneficial than sitting in the other room with a wannabe rapper, a MPC3000 and a Mackie. Music wasn’t paying too well at that time, so the naked girlfriend won. *laughs*
Soon after, I had gone on a vacation in Amsterdam where I saw a friend take a photo, then minutes later he projected that photo on a wall – and I was fascinated. Obviously you couldn´t do that with a film camera. Anybody knows that with film you had to spend the whole roll, and then take the roll to the photo mat and then wait 3 days to see if you were even in focus. So, I flew home and bought my first camera, which was an Olympus. It was 2.1 megapixels and it was $600. That was a good value back then… I think. I spent the next 5 to 6 months taking photos of anything that was in front of me, from my dog, to trees, to buildings.. anything.
I would have never gone to school for photography. I take pride in the fact that nobody can say they taught me how to take a photo or light a subject.
“I don’t think, creativity can be taught. I think with some people, school can help grow the creative mind, but I don’t think it would grow any faster than if those people had gone out and figured things out on their own.”
I think there is greater potential in acquiring certain things without outside interference…
There are lot different worlds inside photography – architecture, events, landscape and so on. Why fashion?
I shoot fashion more than anything else at this exact moment, but I go through phases. Sometimes I don’t shoot fashion for weeks and I find myself taking more shots of things in my everyday world. When my next child is born in the next couple of years, I will instantly turn into a photographer of babies. When spring hits full swing, I will morph into a photographer of backyard Barbecues. You know, People laughing, CloseUp shots of cheeseburgers. Things like that. The next time I go on vacation, I will turn into a street photographer. Phases. But, fashion is how we met, so thats what you know of me…
And where do you get your inspirations from?
Life. NYC. Hip Hop. Street fashion. Bad fashion. My daydreams. My nightmares. Just about anywhere… But I like to think my end result is never showing a direct connection to any inspiration other than life itself.
Do you like to work more inside or on location?
I’m a location guy. I think location helps tell a story more than a seamless background. I live in the greatest city in the world – I was born here. I know about some of the coolest spots to go to in the city where they no longer look like they are in the city. On the other hand, you can grab a cab and tell them to drive in any direction for 10 minutes and when you get out, you will see a place that is interesting enough to use as a backdrop for some sort of shoot. Now, at the moment I shoot more studio, because were just coming out of winter. In the winter, if I’m in NYC, I stay indoors, unless I have a production going that is worth freezing for.
Do you work alone or with a team?
My shoots usually consist of 3 people. Myself, a make up/hair person and the model. I like when someone does both make up and hair. That makes less people to depend on and less people taking up space. As far as wardrobe, I style 90% of my shoots myself. I’m pretty independent… I don’t use assistants. I set up my own lights and I carry my own bags.
What are the criteria for a model – how do you select them and what makes the different between a “good” and “amateur” model for you?
My criteria for a female model is simple. She must be able to move and express herself. The actual look of a model depends on what my end goal is. As far as good and amateur, I think it all falls into common sense. A good model pays attention to detail and has a good knowledge of what a photographer or client wants. An amateur model is only an amateur because of their own limitations. I think using the word amateur in this situation seems a little negative since everyone is an amateur at one point, so maybe you wanted to say bad model? In that case, a bad model could be a model who doesn’t put forth a true effort that would keep her consistent. Then there are models who may be preoccupied with something other than modeling. I don’t know, There are a million ways to call something bad, sometimes…
The secrets – was there any shooting, were everything goes wrong? And also another one, where you say – this was the best until today?
Worst shoot… I had this beautiful model standing in a waterfall – yes, a real waterfall – in the middle of the city. I put her in a really cool dress and had her standing out there ready to take pictures. I start shooting. 15 shots in and my camera malfunctions. Photo shoot done. I have never really tried to do that type of photo shoot again. It may be time to go back to the waterfall. But I have several best shoots.
“They usually have something to do with the model being really cool. That’s no coincidence. The better the attitude, the better the results from the shoot. It doesn’t matter what the girl looks like or the style of the shoot.”
There have been some location shoots where I loved the location more than anything else – and that helped to inspire me to do well. There have been shoots where I worked with plain paper in the back and the model just had this excellent work ethic and we just steamrolled our way through to the end. Too many shoots that I remember fondly to pick just one.
In your opinion – if we split photography in different parts – like the model, light, location, assistant, technical process – what’s the hardest part?
For me, the hardest part of a shoot is the 5 minutes before everyone arrives. Thats when I start to think about my concept and whether I got the right clothes, etc… Its just a tense feeling I get before I meet the model, which could also be based on the fact that I’m introverted and anti social with strangers. That doesn’t help much for social situations, huh?
What kind of photographer you are?
I’m the quiet guy who likes to direct with his hands if possible. I don’t bring emotions into a photo shoot. It’s not necessary. I’m not a dramatic person at all. The less I talk at a shoot, the better the result for me.
If you have to choose a word for your work – what would it be?
I don’t know if I would ever try to label myself or my work. If you see my work, you will see that if anything, it is not one thing. I don’t want a label. If I become a great photographer it will not be because I have a singular great style, but style in general.
Let’s talk about the equipment – what camera do you use? What does the right camera for you need most?
I shoot with a Canon 5dmkII. It’s not cheap, but on the camera scale its definitely not expensive. But overall, I don’t care what a person shoots with. If they get the desired results, let them tell you whats better. Some of the best photographs ever taken were not taken with expensive cameras, and some of the worst were not taken with the cheapest. Moreover I would appreciate knowing a cheap camera took a great shot more than an expensive camera doing the same thing, wouldn’t you?
A photography-world without digital possibilities – is that still realistic for you?
Like I said, my first camera was digital. I have no desire to shoot with film. I don’t criticize people who like film though. To each his own. When I first started, I would have never been able to afford all of the things that went along with this hobby had it not been for the digital wave taking over, so I’m appreciative of that. What I’m doing now will be considered the old way one day anyway, right?
The usual question: all borders, realism and similar away, no laws and enough money – what shooting would you want to realize?
Without limits, I would want to shoot nature. I’d love to go to Africa and shoot wild animals. I would love to shoot portraits of unknown people – without exploiting them. I would love to photograph random kids going through life in a school for a few weeks at a time. I would love to have been able to take photos of my grandfather, or more photos of my mother, or more photos of my son, or more photos of my wife. I think I would need more time than anything. I don’t need laws to change or more money. I like photos of life without fabrication.
What’s your target in the next five years?
I want to have a dedicated team of people I can call on to help me create the images in my head. The images in my head are so much more vivid than what I am able to show you. But I may need more than 5 years for that.
Classic question: 5 things you can’t live without?
Aside from my family, there is nothing I can’t live without…
Now 5 things you really love having access to?
Damon, thanks a lot!!!
Interview by Emanuel Sprosec / Sigrun Guggenberger
“I love these models with character, there is nothing more exciting to me than a person who can cast a spell over you with their expression.” Today we have the pleasure to present you Kurt Salhofer – fashion photographer from Austria – and show you some of his recent work – and also a small Backstage view behind the scenes…
Alright, tell us who you are, where you are from and what your current job is?
Kurt Salhofer and I was born in Ried (Austria) – I am a photographer.
You are living a bit outside of Vienna- how did you get into photography from there? You have got an education in that field, right? I have done my training inVienna, at Sirotek, which was a very cool place of education, and I have to say thanks to all the people there who have always supported me! I have learned everything there from scratch, Black and White & Colour development, all types of development, reproduction, lamination, studio… and it was never a problem to borrow a Hasselblad for the weekend or use the studio for personal projects – I very much appreciated that… I was studying biology (botany) in Vienna before that, but a climbing accident put me out of action for a year and in that time I also realized that this wouldn´t be my future. I then applied to Austrian Airlines to be trained as a pilot – haha! Fortunately, I have to say now, I was a year too old for their trainee program.
So after that, I was looking for an apprenticeship as a photographer and arrived at the interview at Sirotek with crutches. I will never forget the first question of my former boss when he asked me „Why you want to be a photographer?“ and I answered „Because it is a creative job!“ He then started laughing, telling me that it is anything but creative… but I still think nowadays, that it is a very, very creative job.
I had the support from my parents too, because as a photographer you don´t have a wage agreement, so that ment minimum wage as a trainee. It was around ~2.700 Schilling in the first year and you can´t get very far with that…
In your opinion – are there any differences in the quality of photography when comparing Vienna to other parts of Austria? Are there different scenes? To be honest, I have never experienced the scenes in other states of Austria, in particular the fashion field – I think Austria is too small for that…
Seeing your portfolio you mainly photograph fashion – is there any reason for that? What is the attractive thing about fashion for you? Could you also imagine taking images from different areas, like architecture? For architecture I have no patience! *laughs* Ansel Adams once said, that he learned to be patient through photography – I think it is the opposite for me.
“It is really what I appreciate so much, that within a fraction of a second you are able to capture a moment and then another new one…”
…that surely is a good reason to be into fashion photography but above all it is the aspiration for aesthetics and also „lively aesthetics“, compared to architecture… *laughs*.
What else I can imagine is to photograph musicians – this is yet to come…
Are you going to fashion shows or are you engaging yourself with fashion apart from photography?
I don´t really go to shows, but of course I engage myself with fashion and design, magazines, books and so on..
Are there any photographers or other artists who inspire you? Or where else do you get your ideas and your drive from? Yes, sure there are some and in parts I get my ideas from them, but in other parts I have my own perception and then I convert those ideas into pictures. If you like, my big role models are Bob Richardson – a real grand master of moments and I would class him higher than his son Terry, Irving Penn, Helmut Newton, Albert Watson, Avedon and many more. Generally speaking I would say that it is artists, that were or are not primarly concerned with fashion photography but want or ed to tell something with their pictures…
How is your way of working- are you someone who has a clear picture in mind about the location and then looks for a suitable model or you just have a rough idea which you then convert into an image through the shooting? Of course I have a base frame about the image in my mind. But it also happens that I have an idea in mind and then arrive at the location and it is not possible to realize it that way – be it because of the weather or because the model is different than I imagined, or the clothes don´t suit the style I imagined… Then it doesn´t make any sense to hold on to that idea and I try to approach the shooting in a different way, something that suits the moment and the mood.
On what basis do you choose your models and what makes the “right” model for you?
“I love these models with character, there is nothing more exciting to me than a person who can cast a spell over you with their expression.”
Of course the measures should be adequate, but I can´t do anything with a model where the body is perfect but she has no expression, posing…
Do you always work with the same assistance-team at shootings or you always work with a different one? Partly with the same, partly with a different one. I also find it exciting to work with a complete new team.
How can we imagine the normal “daily life” of Kurt Salhofer?
First of all I go for a walk with my dog, I don´t mind if f.e we have to get up at 5 a.m. already and walk in the dark – the dog does mind though *laughs*. Then I check my mails while drinking a coffee and then it depends – shooting, Mac, etc… In the evenings I like to cook in order to switch off.
How do you work – are you one of those photographers that gives instructions accompanied by shouting and gesticulating or are you working quietly? And – how many pictures do you take at a shooting? There are many photographers that take hundreds per set, others just a few…? During the first images I check how the model works and if all is fine then I almost don´t say anything at all during the complete shooting. In any other case I give subtle instructions. In general, I think that if a certain pose or expression is not included in a model´s repertoire then you will not be able to get that or you shouldn´t force it, because the result will always just be a compromise and no one wants that. The number of pictures vary depending on the set, but in general nowadays I take more pictures than I used to, so there can be a few hundred pictures…
Has there ever been a shooting where everything went wrong? And how was your first real shooting in the year dot? What was it like and how did you feel like – was it succesful? Well luckily so far nothing went really wrong, but of course there have been borderline moments, where I almost discontinued the shooting.
For example, a catalogue photo series where we were not, and couldn´t have been, aware about the on-site conditions. Luckily everything turned out all right, but I wouldn´t do it again. My first big job was an advertising campaign for an energy producer, that was really cool and at that time on 6×7 cm, – it was a good feeling to look at my first big posters hanging all over the country!!!
A lot of your pictures are taken on location – and less in the studio – is there a reason for that or is this just coincidentally? Do you have your own studio? Yes, I have my own studio, but speaking honestly it is more my flash units standing around in there. I think that usually I tend more to photography on location and the main reason for that is that it provides uniqueness!
In contrast to the new generation, you have experienced the analog photography – many people think that with the flood of digital images there is also an oversaturation – do you share that opinion? Does a bit of the „charm“ fade away because of digital photography? Of course we have an oversaturation and flooding of not only images, but any sort of visual, accoustic and other stimuli – the problem with that is to recognize the important and interesting ones and to filter out the other ones. In the meantime that is hard work – just think about Facebook.
“I think that there is still this charm of photography today, but the charm has just become a bit different.”
But something has to be said – the „charm“ was not always that much fun, you often had a stomach ache after a shooting, especially when the lightning had been complicated, etc… of course you had polaroids for checking purposes, but on a set where the conditions changed fast and you knew that the model had this expression now and clouds and sun were changing all the time, then you have 5-6 shades difference that you had to correct feeling based and in case you also exposed on dia then the scope for wrong exposure was not very wide. Then you also had to wait for the photo laboratory component and also there things went wrong from time to time.
One of your last shooting had been “19. arrondissement”, a black and white series that came into being in Vienna – also on unusual places. Can you tell us a bit about that…? Where did the idea to this set come from and how did you find the locations? Were you consciously looking for the right place – or is it a mixture of ideas and knowledge that there is an interesting location that you want to use? Yes, that was interesting. The main idea was to use an old Viennese cinema or Beisl (Pub) as a location and I couldn´t really think of a lot spontaneously, because most of them have been renovated or closed down, which I think is a pitty. With this whole adaptation onto standards and restrictions nowadays, a crucial charm of Vienna gets lost. Anyway, then I thought of a place that I knew very well from my times as a student, so I enquired and got an immediate reply – something that I didn´t expect and that I really, really appreciate. The only problem was that the location had business as usual while we were shooting and because it is a small place, I was quite worried of how that would work and how the visitors there would react… well my worries had been needless, because the visitors all had been very nice and helpful…
But I knew in advance that this location didn´t have enough possibilities for the planned style and then I remembered the stairways of a friend of mine in Vienna where I always wanted to take pictures, so we had a second location for that day!
Not only this series is very revealing – is it easy to find models that are revealing or is that an obstacle when looking for models? That has not been easy and is definitely a big obstacle, in particular when you demand high standards of models, like I do *laughs*. Here I would like to say THANK YOU to the agencies and models that have been doing a great job and I know that it is elaborate and I really appreciate your efforts!!!
Is there any sort of shooting that you would like to realize but it is so odd, elaborate or crazy, that it will just stay an idea? To convert a picture from Pieter Brueghel á la fashion and also doing this in a barren area, that has been a long dream of mine. However to realize this I would need an army of artists, models, costumes etc., so I assume this will stay a dream…
Right now you are active in Austria – are there plans to be also active in other countries as well? How can we imagine your future? Good question – and for sure the most difficult one to answer at the moment. I think I can tell you more about that in 1-2 years…
What has been the best life lesson so far?
To live in the here and now.
What is the most important thing for you in life…
Health & Happiness
The classical question- 5 things you cannot live without?
Pasta, Music, DVD´s, Travelling & the Simpsons
Mac or PC? And- what camera are you using?
Mac, Canon & Hasselblad
The last question – what hobbies do you have besides photography?
My dog, playing the guitar and cooking
Kurt, thanks for your time!
Interview by Emanuel Sprosec
Translation by Sigrun Guggenberger