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SvenHartmann

Interview with Sven Hartmann

Interviews

30 October 2015

Posted by Anna Fraser

Hi Sven! Tell us about yourself in two sentences - who are you?

My name is Sven Hartmann, I'm 33 years old and I'm from Germany. I'm quite introverted, which is why I remain unknown to many people.

QWhat's the weirdest situation you've found yourself in while taking a photograph?

AWhen doing street photography you often end up in weird situations. Sometimes you're following someone very interesting for a few minutes to capture them in an impressive setting, while keeping yourself unnoticed by them. Sometimes you find yourself sitting in an uncomfortable position in the middle of the street.

QWhat do you shoot on? What's your favourite set up?

AI've captured some great moments with my smartphone, but most of my photos are taken with a Sony a6000 because the a6k is technically superior when it comes to street photography. Basically I shoot 75% of my photos with the 16-50mm Kit-Lens because it is a very small and highly flexible setup. Many people ask me about the cam or lens I'm shooting on. But to be honest, I really don't care much about having the most sophisticated camera or some super fancy numbers on my lens. Discover the limits of your equipment. Once you've found out its limitations, you'll know what to buy next.

QWhat's your number one tip for an aspiring photographer?

AFirst of all, like mentioned above, get to know your camera and learn the very basics. Then just go out and shoot. Make sure to observe your surroundings closely and keep your camera nearby.

My favourite pic is 'The Agent' because for me it's like the shot is keeping a secret from the viewer. I was out somewhere on the streets of Toronto and spotted this man with hi... Read more

My favourite pic is 'The Agent' because for me it's like the shot is keeping a secret from the viewer. I was out somewhere on the streets of Toronto and spotted this man with his long grey coat and some documents under his arm. I followed him for about 5 minutes or so, but couldn't get a single shot of what I wanted. Then he suddenly turned down this dark looking stairway. It was the perfect moment, so I clicked the shutter, and you can see the result I got in the picture. Read less

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Sven Hartmann

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This one is an early morning capture of the Manhattan skyline, as seen from the Brooklyn Bridge Park just a few minutes before the sun rose. I planned to spend an hour doing a t... Read more

This one is an early morning capture of the Manhattan skyline, as seen from the Brooklyn Bridge Park just a few minutes before the sun rose. I planned to spend an hour doing a time lapse to capture the awakening of Manhattan, but it was a -15°C/4°F morning and I had to stop after 45 minutes or so. Read less

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Sven Hartmann

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Oh sometimes the conditions are not only hard for a photographer, but also for the pedestrians, especially in street canyons like the Financial District in Toronto. It was raini... Read more

Oh sometimes the conditions are not only hard for a photographer, but also for the pedestrians, especially in street canyons like the Financial District in Toronto. It was raining and very windy, and I saw a lot of people struggling with their umbrellas, so I decided to wait a few minutes right next to this crossing and capture people fleeing the harsh weather. Read less

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Sven Hartmann

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Capturing cityscapes is an easy task, but these pictures always seem kind of dead to me, since there is basically no life in them. I almost always try to capture some special de... Read more

Capturing cityscapes is an easy task, but these pictures always seem kind of dead to me, since there is basically no life in them. I almost always try to capture some special detail, or a moment where someone is walking in the frame. Did you notice the woman on the left doing some stretching? When I was taking this shot on my smartphone, neither did I. Read less

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Sven Hartmann

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I took this shot from the Tudor City overpass in New York City. Most photographers are here for taking pictures in the other direction because it is a very popular spot to captu... Read more

I took this shot from the Tudor City overpass in New York City. Most photographers are here for taking pictures in the other direction because it is a very popular spot to capture the long, busy 42nd Street with the Chrysler Building. I found this white arrow pointing to the left with the crossing in the background. I had to wait for about 20 minutes or so until there were only a couple of people crossing the street from left to right. Sometimes observing your surroundings and doing things differently pays off. Read less

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Sven Hartmann

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This is exactly the same junction in Toronto as before. I took this shot standing in the cold rain while a cosy-looking bus was passing by. The funny thing is, I noticed the sig... Read more

This is exactly the same junction in Toronto as before. I took this shot standing in the cold rain while a cosy-looking bus was passing by. The funny thing is, I noticed the sign above the bus just after taking the shot. Read less

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Sven Hartmann

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I took this photo at the Coney Island Beach in NY. It was a nice winter day, but a bit windy. I was taking some photos of my dog playing at the beach, but he didn't want to play... Read more

I took this photo at the Coney Island Beach in NY. It was a nice winter day, but a bit windy. I was taking some photos of my dog playing at the beach, but he didn't want to play a lot in those kind of conditions. While I was sitting in the sandstorm trying to protect my camera as best I could, I spotted this guy making his way through and captured the moment. This photo also looks great in a high contrast black and white version. Read less

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Sven Hartmann

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Again, this shot is a good example of how to bring a photo to life. Without the man walking towards the exit, I would just have a dead architectural photo with some geometry in ... Read more

Again, this shot is a good example of how to bring a photo to life. Without the man walking towards the exit, I would just have a dead architectural photo with some geometry in it. I took this shot at the Toronto SkyWalk near the CN-Tower. Read less

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Sven Hartmann

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