WUN: Have you seen how your style or your way of shooting has evolved or changed over the years?
Stefan: I have looked back to try to see if I could see a lot of differences from when starting out. I have been very focused on the photo journalistic side of things and snaps a lot of photos.
I still do this, sometimes I don’t even look through the viewfinder, I just point and shoot. But now I can see that I focus a lot more and I think I put a lot more effort into the portraits.
Since I don’t have that much time, I always go early on the same day and scout the locations. I think it’s important not only to know for yourself but when you bring a couple out, you have a limited amount of time – and you are actually taking time from their friends and family during these precious hours of their day. So it is your responsibility to make the most out of those minutes you take from them.
WUN: So planning ahead and being a little bit more efficient about where to go and what to shoot.
Stefan: Yes, and half of the time, you end up doing something different, something spontaneous. But at least you have a plan when you start, to fall back on if it doesn’t work out. And that often helps me to stay calm in the midst of it, and that makes them feel calm.
WUN: They can see that you’re in control and they can relax and just trust you about it.
Stefan: Yeah, and we can joke and talk about other things and I can be present because I already have a plan. So I have the time to create a connection with them while walking around.
We can have a talk rather than – in the beginning – I would just run around trying to find things and be in my own head. Now, often my photos have a sort of calm, at least the portraits. They communicate some kind of mood, which is usually quite calm. I find it interesting because it’s the opposite of who I am really – a very energetic person.
So I usually describe that my goal during the session is always to just try to make them feel comfortable and relaxed and when you feel good and you feel relaxed, you almost always get a good photo.
WUN: So it’s an interesting take to be a little bit more efficient and straightforward with shooting weddings.
Stefan: Yeah, I mean I haven’t really had a choice. It was either that or not doing it at all. Or stop studying or not taking care of my family. You know, it came naturally. Now, when I have the time, I will probably change things somewhat.
Stefan: But I think sometimes it’s really good to consider that there’s a lot more to life than just photography and being a photographer. It’s a great job and it’s a great passion and I really appreciate it. But it’s also healthy that you have other inputs and other sources of inspiration. It has been an interesting journey in the last couple of years, doing so much work and still trying to stay sane and spend time with family and friends too.
WUN: All right. Thank you for taking the time to talk to us and share your ideas about it.
Stefan: I appreciate that you gave me the chance! If anyone would ever have any questions on how to streamline your workflow, I’m all ears.
WUN: And stay sane in the middle of it, haha.
Stefan: I guess that’s the biggest advice I can give, yes.
You can find Stefan online here: Website & Instagram