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analog photography Christian Heidebur contemporary art experimental photography fine art Germany photo art portrait art portrait photography

HUMAN NATURE

CHRISTIAN HEIDEBUR

// Christian is a self-taught photographer, based in Munich, Germany. Photography for him is a way to be in touch with his environment and nature, a way of being mindful. He enjoys the challenge of creating interesting double and multiple exposures, something he has put to excellent use in this artful portrait series.

“When I started photography in 2019 I wasn’t feeling too well. Looking back I understand, that I didn’t have a healthy relationship to my environment and the to world in general. Through different influences and with the help of photography I enjoy contact and exchange with my environment and nature again and walk through the world much more mindful,” Christian says. “My perception has changed and I also see the world with different eyes with the help of photography. Making a photograph, getting in contact with my motif, pressing the shutter, making notes and developing a film is always giving me something that makes me feel good. It became a part of my life I don’t want to miss. I like to challenge myself with double and triple exposures and try to offer the photography community help and inspiration.”

Apart from creating painterly photography, Christian also likes to paint with watercolours.


“You don’t take a photograph, you make it.”

Ansel Adams


What draws you to the arts?

“Besides my personal penchant for surrealism I treat all artists as a hugh community and I’m curious and fascinated by everyone who is outstandingly innovative and pushed the boundaries, like some of the grand masters who were very ahead of their time. I think of van Gogh for example, where it seems the world wasn’t quite ready for this great art. Although his paintings don’t appeal to me, I really admire his passion for arts and sturdiness to stick to his vision against all that was considered state of the art in his time.”

What do you like best about photo art such as the images you have shared with us?

“What astonished me when I was looking at my photographs is how clearly you can recognize every single person, even if you see only the silhouette. Unless you know them. So the pure shape of a body and poses of a person seem to be as unique as a fingerprint and people must obviously be very good in differentiating and recognizing similar but different shapes.

Christian specialises in analog photography, often using expired or lomo film, which creates interesting colours without any digital editing. For this ethereal series of portraits he combined photographs of different nature patterns or other patterns (such as on wrapping paper), with portraits.

In terms of his process, he double-exposes the film in camera – in order to to know how to compose these double or sometimes multiple exposures, he makes sketches of the scenes he takes during the first round of exposures, so that during the subsequent exposure (simply rewinding the film to expose again) he will know where the subject is and where a second exposure would look best. Although he calls this a “simple” process, we find it impressive that it is not left up to chance how the images will overlay. With digital cameras that have the capacity of in-camera multiple exposures, it is relatively easy to compose, as one can see an overlay of the images right away on screen, but the trouble with (or joy of, as the case may be) analogue photography is that one really cannot see the result until much later.

Although Christian does have the equipment for developing, he prefers to send the films to a lab for processing and scanning (in his case, the Carmencita Film Lab in Valencia). “Even the black and white films. “I do have the equipment and a scanner, but scanning is very time-consuming,” he says. “You also have to be very careful, always blow away dust, preferably wear gloves, etc. It’s not my thing at all. And then professionals can edit saturation and contrast better. I would be wasting my time there too.” Christian is happy with the work done by the lab. “As already mentioned, Carmencita adjusts the saturation and contrast during the scan. A real photographer, with experience in the darkroom, does exactly the same thing.”

We do not think you need darkroom skills to be a real photographer and Christian certainly deserves that label. Enjoy his artistic double and multiple exposure portraits! We have previously featured Christian´s series Enchanted Forest – head over for more inspiration..


Photos may be cropped for layout. Click on the photos to see a larger image with its title in original dimensions.

ALL IMAGES © CHRISTIAN HEIDEBUR

To see more of his photography visit Christian´s Instagram page .

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