while looking through the web, we discovered Bavarian photographer Adrian Kirchhof by coincidence, since he has the same name as another photographer, we in the beginning focussed on. Finally we were lucky to find him and have got the opportunity for an interview with him. Get an impression of his work and take a look at his versatile and authentic people photos.
First of all I want to thank you for interviewing and writing an article about me. So to say it is the first time for me being interviewed. I was born in 1982 in Bad Reichenhall (Bavaria) and now live in my parents' house, near the Chiemsee, what might be a location some people know. As an outsider I’ve made my hobby my main occupation in September 2009 and work as a photographer since then. Previously I worked in a completely different area. Photography since 2004 has been a great passion of mine and it still remains today even it is also my profession.
Have you been Involved in the arts in some form other than photography?
I have drawn something previously, but I would denote that a great hobby, that would affect me in a form today.
To be honest, I don’t understand the question. For me, my work, my pictures and videos are something, that happens naturally for me. I see something or I have an idea in mind and simply create it, especially when I have an idea in mind, which usually happens quite randomly and not planned. When working with people, it is very dependent on my opposite. Do I know this person only for 5 minutes or do we have already some common work behind us, so that I know that person. For me this is a big difference, if I know somebody or not. That develops only slightly. I cannot photograph a person authentically, if I don’t know that person. Therefor I always need a lot of time in advance. So there’s no way for a ‘fast shoot’ with me.
Could you share with us how you first became interested in photography?
In 2003 I bought the first digital camera, only a small compact camera, but I quickly wanted something better. The next camera was purchased in summer 2004. Then I had saved enough money in an eBay auction, so thatI could buy my first digital SLR. Even during the drive home, and the first "click" of the camera, I knew for sure, "That will never let me go again."
What equipment are you using now and with what did you get started? what is your favorite lens?
At the moment I use a camera body, the Nikon D5, before I had the D4. As a professional body I first started with the Nikon D3s and since then never purchased a smaller one. The more money, you invest, is worth it. But it of course depends on, what is ultimately done with it. As a hobby I would recommend something like that only, if you can even afford such a camera easily.
As first DSLR I had the Nikon D70 in hand and already knew at this would keep me occupied for a long time. Ultimately, even as I made my hobby my job. The lenses, that I use currently, are a 50mm f / 1.4D AF Nikkor 105mm f / 2.8G IF-ED AF-S VR Micro-Nikkor, 14-24mm f2.8G ED AF-S Nikkor, 24-70mm f / 2.8G ED AF-S Nikkor, 70-200mm f / 2.8G ED AF-S VR II Zoom Nikkor 85mm f / 1.4G AF-S Nikkor. Out of these I have two favorites. One is the 70-200mm f / 2.8G ED AF-S VR II Nikkor zoom and the other is the 85mm f / 1.4G AF-S Nikkor. I appreciate the versatility of Telezooms, however, one has some more weight in the hand, what it makes it not easy to work with this lens a very long time. But I’m of the opinion, that the 85mm f / 1.4G AF-S Nikkor is a great alternative, when it should be easier again. I still want some distance to my "target".
I consider the following: I suddenly have an idea of a very specific image. Quite fast a very specific image develops in my mind. Then actually the hardest part of all starts … to find the right model and to get the model inspired of this idea. Unfortunately, it often fails precisely because I cannot find a model, that fits. In case, I find the right model, I go on … make an appointment, a first introduction and then slowly "shoot warm" until during the shooting slowly but surely the actual image is worked out.
If I finally got exactly what I had imagined, the rest is a simple story and only a matter of Photoshop or, rather in my case, of Corel.
Do you see a Particular influence, be it a photographer or school on your work? Any subject did attract you?
I also take a look at the work of other photographers. There are not many, but I havn’t realized it as an influence for me and my work. I want to develop my own style and not copy anyone else. You can indeed copy a lot and pick up ideas, but to develop yourself is rather something that lasts longer.
What would you say characterizes your work in comparison to other photographers?
To put this answer short, I do not compare my work with others. This is as if you have a contest and try to be the best. So to have an attitude to be better, is laudable and not bad, but simply to try to stand out on a higher podium than anyone else, gets people divided only and does not bring us closer together. Hatred and envy can be widespread and I’m not interested to attend this epidemic.
What I still can say about my work, is – I’ve heard it from many people - that my pictures look very natural.
Phew … you’ve got me stumped asking which of my photos is my favorite. I think there'll be more than one. Depending of course on the subject and especially the person. Some subjects were good as a motive but not human. Maybe it’s a bit old-fashioned, but I think, you see it at the persons shown and ultimately also on the total picture, if it is a show or authentic. I think this to be a big difference. Since I did a lot of sessions in all these years, for me there is not one but several images or even series, which brought me on and I still like today.
In many of my works some pictures I only like for a short time, others remain until today to be real eye-catchers for me.
Tell us your funniest or most awkward photography story.
Hm ... so I can now not at all remember what ever happened to me. But I can remember a shoot out of my hobby time. Whereby it was embarrassing rather than for the model for me. Because the model had a pretty slippery slip on and you constantly could see more than really was intended to be shown on the pictures.
What would you tell a newcomer who asks for your advice on how to start?
Similar to Mr. Hilton, I would say: contacts, contacts, contacts!