A WILD ESCAPE
Gina and Chris are a wedding photographer couple based in Cologne.
Thanks for taking the time and answering our questions!
1. When and how did you start with Photography?
Chris: When I graduated, I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do with my life. In these days photography was a great way for me to gain perspective in a world that I felt pretty lost in. At first, I took my mom’s DSLR with me on long hikes and experimented with landscapes a lot. Later I started to explore documentary photography and from there found my way into press photography, where I learned a ton and got my first paid jobs. The idea that I could make money with something I was so passionate about was surreal to me. Shortly after friends approached me, asking me whether I would be up for shooting their wedding. I said yes, with zero idea what I was getting myself into. That was about four years ago.
Gina: I was always super creative and working as a freelance writer at the time, but it wasn’t until I met Chris that I fell in love with the medium of photography beyond capturing travel memories and family festivities. We started documenting our life and travels together and were rarely seen without cameras around our necks. From the very beginning I was fascinated with capturing people more than anything else and discovering that wedding photography could go way beyond what I had known at the time was a huge revelation for Chris and I. It lead us to the decision to join forces and as a duo we embarked on our „wild escape“ in the beginnings of 2016.
2. What inspires you the most?
In times of Social Media the whole world is at your fingertips within an instant, so it’s very important to us to look for inspiration outside our own niche and beyond Facebook groups and Instagram feeds. We try to soak in everything beautiful and interesting around us – a song, an anecdote, a movie, a window view. All these things intertwined add up to this constantly growing repertoire in the back of your head that you can always access if needed. But our biggest inspiration are always the people in front of our camera.
3. What do you like to do, if you are not behind the camera?
With our growing work load, we try to get away from our screens as much as possible (we’re not perfect, but getting better!). We have recently started to take up Western riding and are already addicted, because it’s an awesome way to completely zoom out and focus on something entirely different from anything we usually worry about. Working out is so important, especially when shooting weddings, so we try to squeeze that in as much as possible. Apart from that we enjoy extensive road trips, traveling, late breakfasts in our favorite cafés and cuddling up on the couch with our cats.
4. Where was the best location you’ve been so far?
Please don’t make us decide! We’ve been to many awesome locations and each possessed a very different vibe.
We love to mix things up though and are always happy to go somewhere new.
5. Which equipment do you use mainly?
Mostly we shoot Canon 5D Mark IIIs with a bunch of fast primes lenses. For us, our cameras are means to getting a picture that transports are certain feeling or emotion and that’s what we care about, everything else is secondary. We aren’t dogmatic about the gear we use and often think that people pay too much attention to what they’re shooting with rather than asking themselves: What do I want to convey? Where’s the story here? How can I frame this in a way that will make it awesome? It’s a journey, but to us it’s the fascinating part of photography. (Chris has come a long way in that regards –
he used to be a total tech geek!)
6. Do you have any tips to direct your couples how to pose?
Don’t force it. Instead, talk to them upfront, get a feeling of who is standing in front of your camera and what makes sense and looks natural for them. That sometimes means leaving the photographer’s ego out of it, which can be so hard (we know!). We always try and create a fun and relaxed atmosphere by talking a lot, laughing a lot and making our couple feel safe to be as goofy or quiet or romantic as they want to be. Once you are able to create this bubble for them, you don’t have to worry so much about posing – lots of beautiful moments will unfold naturally.
7. What is your favourite life quote?
“The only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars and in the middle you see the blue centerlight pop and everybody goes “Awww!” – Jack Kerouac „On the Road“
8. What would you do now, if you hadn‘t become a photographer?
We have lots of wild ideas, some of them may even come to life in the future. We love to determine our own schedule, where not two days are alike and we do something that puts a huge smile on our faces every day. If photography hadn’t found us – god know what could have happen. Gina would have probably stuck with writing, aspiring to be a novelist (some day, some day!) and Chris would be a forest warden or a professional cat lady, if only he could find a way to make a living from it. 😉
THANK YOU GINA AND CHRIS!