It's a cold winter day in Frankfurt. I reach the backyard where Frederik has his studio in an old factory building. It has high ceilings and is a room double as long as broad. He also rents his factory style photo studio to other photographers and brands by the day. It is ideal for portrait or couple images, especially when you use it just has an additional option.
Because most of the time, Fredster – how Frederik calls himself – is on the road. He loves to travel and shortly after we met, he took off to South Africa for some shoots.
For ten years, Frederik worked as a Management Consultant. Photography was his hobby and in 2015 he felt, it was time for a change. He was spending more time in the office than with his family and only found time to photograph when he was on holidays. He gave himself two years time to figure out whether it was realistic to become a full-time photographer.
Frederik made a plan. He is a very organised person and simply thought about in which fields of photoraphy he could stand out.
Creating business portraits and shooting events was the most logical thing to do. He had a lot of contacts from his job as a consultant and liked the challenges he faced when creating certain looks for big events of his former company.
To grow, you need to leave your comfort zone.
We all know, there's a lot of money to be earned in the field of wedding photography. But you need to stand out, because the market is full of competition. It helped Frederik a lot that he loves weddings. He admitted that he is a bit corny and emotional and really likes to accompany wedding couples with his camera. He mingles with the crowd and witnesses the weddings through his lens.
Being able to envision the style of wedding photographs he wants to create, he decided to think bigger and offers weddings world-wide, for a change. One of his personal highlights was a wedding he shot at the Grand Canyon and Antelope Canyon in the USA.
Now, there's such strong demand, he needs to limit himself to not more than 30 bookings per year.
Fashion and travel photography
After setting up photo shoots with models and agencies to build up a portfolio, Frederik began to photograph campaigns for fashion labels. Working with beautiful people is something he admires. And it also combines very well with his love for traveling to awesome places.
Frederik quickly made the jump from Canon to Sony. He shoots with a Sony A7III and uses a 35mm and a 85mm lens. Limiting himself to these two focal lenses helps him to create his own recognizable style. In Adobe Lightroom he applies his color grading – where he wants to emphasize natural beauty. This works well for all fields of photography he is working in.
To my surprise, Fredster shoots in manual mode all the time. He told me, it gives him superior control over the exposure and he is able to achieve better images than in any automatic mode, especially when shooting against the light.
Moving images also mean a lot to him. So, he began to produce fashion film and travel videos. Here's a teaser clip I really like:
As more and more people ask him for advice on social media, the desire to become an influencer grew. The word influencer itself has been overused, probably. And there are a lot of influencers out there, already. But, Frederik countered: There are a lot of math teachers out there, too. It's all about finding the right one for you.
For him, it all follows a simple rule: Learn, do, teach. He uses YouTube to gain knowledge a lot, so for him it, it is only natural, to give something back to the community and start his own channel.
It was a great pleasure to meet an eager photographer like Frederik. He is full of ideas and a man of action. It was inspiring to hear about his attitude, especially as he covers different fields of photography than I do. I will make sure to follow Fredster on social media and am already looking forward to his next travel videos.