Blog 1701 Bastian Thiery 08

Tal­king pho­to­gra­phy by Bas­ti­an Thiery

Model turned photographer Bastian Thiery, is piecing together a picture of stories in a very cinematic way.

He is most inte­res­ted in sce­ne, loca­ti­on, and feel. He likes to puz­zle things tog­e­ther…. Things he finds in ever­y­day life, street or any other loca­ti­on that inspi­res him and gives him a cer­tain feel.

Bas­ti­an got into pho­to­gra­phy while he was living in NY, as at the time bore­dom got the best of him, so he just star­ted to won­der the streets, and while doing so, he star­ted to pho­to­graph peop­le, objects etc…. Pho­to­gra­phy has now pro­ven to be his own way to inves­ti­ga­te life and what is it all about. He is crea­ting pic­tures that in some way col­li­de rea­li­ty and fan­ta­sy (fan­ta­sy becau­se not ever­ything is as it seems, and some­ti­mes com­ple­te stran­gers may be por­tray­ed as lovers’ due to being in the right place at the right time, with Bas­ti­an some­whe­re near to cap­tu­re the ran­dom encoun­ter). His work is a com­bi­na­ti­on of still life, land­s­capes, and por­traits that sim­ply show his per­so­nal jour­ney, liter­al­ly and figuratively.

Whe­re are you from and whe­re are you based at the moment?
I’m from a small town in the Ger­man sou­thwest but have been living in Ber­lin for almost seven years now.

When peop­le ask what do you do?’, what is your ans­wer?
I say I model and stu­dy pho­to­gra­phy, and the order can change.

What is your pho­to­gra­phy about?
It’s about tex­tu­re, geo­me­try, eyes, a stran­ge fee­ling or con­nec­tion. May­be some­ti­mes try­ing to con­nect things that weren’t in the three-dimen­sio­nal world.

What kind of pho­to­gra­phy inte­rests you the most?
I think I am inte­res­ted in all types of pho­to­gra­phy. I real­ly like fashion pho­to­gra­phy just for what it is. The ima­gi­na­ti­on and crea­ting some­thing… But I am also inte­res­ted in docu­men­ta­ry pho­to­gra­phy. I don’t have a box yet. I mean, I real­ly like pho­to­graph­ers who can con­nect cer­tain gen­res and make them work all together.

Pho­to­graph­ers like…
Phil­ip-Lor­ca diCor­cia let say. I real­ly like his book Hust­lers’. It was made during AIDS pan­de­mic in the late 1980s and ear­ly 90s in LA. I also real­ly like works of Euge­ne Richards, Alec Soth. And I’m obses­sed with Gre­go­ry Hal­pern and Lars Tunbjörk at the moment.

What about fashion pho­to­graph­ers?
Jamie Haw­kes­worth is the one that stands out for me at the moment. I real­ly like how he has no bounda­ries nor for tra­vel sto­ries nor fashion stories…

How has your rela­ti­ons­hip to edi­to­ri­al (model) work chan­ged from the time you were not per­suing this care­er and not stu­dy­ing pho­to­gra­phy, to today, when you are beco­m­ing one of them’ pho­to­graph­ers? Do you now find it har­der, easier?
I think it has defi­ni­te­ly chan­ged, in a posi­ti­ve and a nega­ti­ve way. I’m more cri­ti­cal with the final images and also the way they get pro­du­ced. The­re are fashion pho­to­graph­ers who don’t care about the model at all, not even intro­du­ce them­sel­ves on a shoot for examp­le. Befo­re I star­ted taking pic­tures of peop­le I wouldn’t have cared much about that. Now it makes me rather sad to see someo­ne who’s at a point in their care­er whe­re they don’t even want to enga­ge with their sub­ject any­mo­re. On the other hand I’m very hap­py to work as a model with pho­to­graph­ers who want to real­ly crea­te some­thing beau­ti­ful and who share their artis­tic visi­on with the team they’re working with. I can appre­cia­te this more than befo­re. I think wha­t’s so spe­cial about fashion pho­to­gra­phy is the col­la­bo­ra­ti­on bet­ween all the dif­fe­rent par­ties invol­ved, like hair & make-up, sty­ling, pho­to­gra­phy, art direc­tion, and with some edi­to­ri­als it can be very open whe­re the jour­ney leads to.

Ok now back to your pho­to­gra­phy — are you impul­si­ve while taking pic­tures or do you take your time and wait for the right moment?
When I star­ted explo­ring pho­to­gra­phy I used to take pic­tures on the street in New York. I’d see an inte­res­ting loo­king per­son approa­ching, would stop and pho­to­graph them, very quick. But I’m way too impa­ti­ent to stay in one place and wait for things to unfold like many street pho­to­graph­ers. I feel more like a fla­neur. At the moment I most­ly use medi­um for­mat film, which slows me down a lot more than 35mm film, but I still have to walk all the time.

What aspect of pho­to­gra­phy do you find the most chal­len­ging?
I think my big­gest strugg­le is some­ti­mes to stay hungry, to do things or for­cing mys­elf to go out the­re con­stant­ly. I think a big strugg­le is also the who­le social media thing, which I don’t hate on but I think the likes and fol­lo­wers dis­tract some­ti­mes. And in gene­ral, a big chal­len­ge for me is to get out of my com­fort zone. I think the best pic­tures are made out­side the com­fort zone.

Blog 1701 Bastian Thiery 02
Blog 1701 Bastian Thiery 09

Is the­re any work out the­re that you wish you’d come up with first?
Joel Sternfeld’s Ame­ri­can Pro­spects’ — I wish I could have done exact­ly that trip.

When you are not mode­ling or taking pho­tos, what do you do?
A few years ago I would have replied par­ty­ing’, now it’s more long bre­ak­fasts, walks with my frien­d’s dog, going to the muse­um… I’m con­stant­ly lis­tening to music. I try to go to the dar­kroom and print some pic­tures once a week when I don’t travel.

What is your favo­ri­te city so far?
I don’t have one par­ti­cu­lar favo­ri­te. I like the ener­gy of New York, the art and youth cul­tu­re in Lon­don, parks and clubs in Ber­lin. I’d say New York is my favo­ri­te as it spar­ked a lot of inte­rests in me.

What are your fave spots in Ber­lin?
I love :/​/​about blank in the sum­mer time. Then the­re’s this calm forest at the end of Son­nen­al­lee, Königs­hei­de’ which is kind of clo­se to my house. Just Ber­lin in Sum­mer in gene­ral, in Win­ter I feel like a her­mit. On Tem­pel­ho­fer Feld is also one spot that I like, it’s whe­re the old shoo­ting ran­ge is, natu­re fights its way back the­re in a beau­ti­ful way.

Favo­ri­te photo…

Pho­to­gra­phy by Bas­ti­an Thiery

30 Jan. 2017 · NEUBAU EYEWEAR
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