Christian Martin Weiss – Master of the Dark Arts
Tell us a little bit about you? Where do you consider home?
I am Grafic-Designer, Illustrator & Photographer and i grew up and still live near Munich/Germany.
Have you attended school/taken any courses for Photography?
I studied Graphic-Design. Photography and Drawing to me were the most important parts of my studies.
List 3 photographers you admire – past and/or present.
Could you tell us something that few people know about you?
I’m actually quite different and it is not easy being me
What do you think of the current state of the photography industry/where do you see it in 5 years?
Photography has become so omnipresent and effortless, that it is hard to earn a living from it and to stay identifyable. Millions of really good amateurs spoil the prizes as they work for free. The whole workflow has become easy and technically bad work can be repaired. Through social Media and Onlineplatforms, idias are spread and copied fast as lightning. Its like in the Musicbusines and in the Modelindustrie. A huge huge circus of desire. There will alway be a market for Bread an Butterwork that can not easily be served with stockfotography. (I do this a lot) As an artist you have to really stand out in some way and be very busy and very lucky to do well financially.
List 3 things you wish you had done sooner in your career.
1.thinking about what i want to tell
2.showing my artistic work
3.leaving the studio with portable light
What in our world, inspires you the most?
The facets of human life.
I’ve noticed your work tends to lean towards Darker Art. What gives you your ideas and why do you feel compelled to portray this image?
I want to talk about emotion, mere beauty or joy is somehowe boring to me, as well as to explicite blood and splatter themes or eroticism. I want to tell “one picture storys” that stay a little longer in peoples head. Every face tells many stories, every body expresses emotions. Beside this I respect my models as “pieces of art” by themselves, as living Sculptures, as miricals by nature. Built up by their experiences and individual lifes. I would consider myself as shy, and photography is a priveliged way to a gain certain intimacy. Good work without trust is not possible. Many of my pictures are quite artificial and do not necessarily tell a story about me or the model. But the Model has to trust in my vision. In a way my method is, to tell a convincing lie to show a truth about the human condition.
What is your current gear setup?
I work with the Nikon System and Various Studioflashes. Compact-Heads in Studio and one small Portable on location.
What is your favorite lens and why?
I use the 50 mm/1.4 the 85 mm/1.4 and 17-35 mm/2.8 all the time. I have no clear preference. All of them have their specific usage
What lighting equipment do you take on a regular shoot if any?
As little as possible. I come from difficult studiolighting and slowly reduced to very simple “one lamp setups”. I like to mix natural light and flash.
How important is Photoshop in your final images?
Very important. Editing bilds up the whole mood.
Are you a Mac or PC lover?
I am into mac from the beginning of my career. I did not have a choice to be honest. I do not participate in “religious fights” like “mac or pc”, “nikon or canon”. I simply stayed with what I started.
If you could be invisible for one day with your camera, where would you go?
In the present? Maybe the Vatican, the White House, a Jail? Somewhere where I can watch dangerous people making plans.
What or who got you started in photography?
I started in scool through my art teacher. i remeber themes like “structure and reduction” and me hunting abstraction in the actually boring world My first lession in seeing differently by slicing reality.
If you weren’t a professional photographer, what would you like to be doing?
I would draw and paint. thats what I would have done from the beginning if I hadn’t discovered in between, that photography is easier and less antisocial :-))
Which 5 words would your friends use to describe you?
Sensitive, calm, unorganised, polite, shy. As i said before I’m actually quite different
What is your greatest fear?
I am obsessed about injuries of my eyes. I have even nightmares about this from time to time.
Do you have a favorite movie? Favorite television show?
Stalker by Tarkowski, 12 Monkeys, the Fountain and many others…
And the last question, What would you do if you won the lottery?…
Work on as before, but excluslively on own projects. Maybe scout and sponsor new Talent.