As the Olympics approach, we thought to interview some photographers based in London. Richard Buttner is a London-based, German-born photographer who also runs a media agency. Read on to find out more about him and his work.
Tell us about yourself
I am Richard from London, UK. Besides photography I am running a marketing agency in London and Germany.
How did you get started in photography?
I started in my adolescence when I realised how much fun it is to see the world through your own eyes and try to reflect that on an image. I was earning some money as a fashion model and actor back then and thus was introduced to the professional world of photography. My first camera was a classic polarioid which was just so much fun.
One camera and one lens for the rest of your life – what would it be?
For the last 20 years I am a Canon boy and currently use a Canon 5D M2, but for the rest of my life I would get a loan and try to upgrade to 5D M3. As a lens I’d go for the Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8, fantastic image quality and an excellent all-rounder. Needless to say the most important gear will always be the camera built into my head
What’s the best thing about being a photographer? Worst?
I love the fact that I am able to capture a moment in someone’s life that they will have forever. Also the travelling and the freedom involved when you’re working independently. However the self-employment can generate lots of pressure and stress due to unstable income.
If you could shoot anything/anyone/anywhere, what would it be?
I am always fascinated by exotic places and travel photography in general. So for instance walking at sunrise in the jungle of Borneo to discover all of a sudden that strange insect / tree / waterfall perfectly lit.
What’s the most memorable photo-shoot you’ve ever done? Tell us about it.
Any shooting with my fiancée…Besides I always liked abandoned places and I did lots urban exploring shooting in London (when you have to jump fences, climb walls etc) – kind of adventurous.
What would you rate as your biggest accomplishment in your career?
Tough one, financially probably shooting for an Adidas campaign.
Will the Olympics generate any business for you? What’s your opinion of the Olympics in London?
It did not generate any business for me. Some photographer friends of mine however see some quite positive impact of the Olympics. Hosting the Olympics is a good thing and the economical impact is big without a doubt. However London is already packed with people and I wonder its going to burst when all the Olympic tourists will be here. But hey, we Londoners love our multicultural city and all new guests for the Olympics are welcome!
Words of advice for those wishing to become a full time pro?
I worked as a pro for a couple of years and stopped it because I found it too tough. This does not mean others shouldn’t try it. Starting a career in an early age certainly helps, develop good sales skills and try to find your own niche (style).
Please share 5 of your favorite photos and a few words about them.
Well, this changes a lot over time but at the moment:
All Bill Brandt photos: great visual sensibility
Sebastioo Salgado: amazing toning
Sally Mann: great provocation and always pushing the buttons
Ansel Adams: meticulous craftsmanship and stunning landscapes
David Bailey: liking the 60ies style…