About

Welcome to Close Focus Studios! I'm Thorsten (silent “h”) and I've been an avid photographer since childhood. My passion for taking photos was sparked at around 1979, when me and my family visited friends for a typical German coffee and cake Sunday afternoon. We had just come home from a forest walk where I'd picked up various sticks and stones, as was typical of me; I always had to bring some "treasures" home. During that afternoon our friends introduced us to their newest acquirement, a Polaroid instant camera. Always up for playing with fun new toys I implored them to let me "take a look". An hour later their stock of instant film had disappeared and I proudly presented all the various portraits taken as well as still lifes of my sticks and stones, particular one very smooth and shiny piece of milky quartz, photographed from every angle possible.

Soon after my parents bought a little Agfa pocket camera, which mostly ended up in my possession and accompanied me on many trips out and about, particularly the zoo. Nature became my favorite subject, followed by close ups of anything that sparked my interest and imagination. I even learned to develop my own slides, mostly from old black and white negatives my grandparents had tucked away in various bins and boxes. My dream was to eventually be able to afford a proper camera, one of those high gloss catalog presented SLRs, of which I ended up collecting several - catalogs that is, not the cameras, sadly, due to struggling financially. Not just that, also that spark of excitement I'd felt on that day back in 1979 never quite established itself with regular film. I missed the immediacy of instant film (though I never bought a Polaroid either, it ultimately felt too limiting).

All that changed in 1998 when I got my first digital camera, a Fujifilm MX-500, which I own to this day. That glimmering spark immediately turned into a firework of excitement, ignited by the endless possibilities of digital photography. No longer did I have to purchase rolls of film and had them develop, with all the cost associated and, most of all, the lack of immediacy, but could upload my photos from that same day to my computer and not only look at them right away but also edit them. How fantastic! Thus, I've been shooting and editing digitally for the past 18 years. Not only that, but my dream of owning an SLR came true when I purchased an Olympus E-510 back in 2007! Prior to that I had been shooting with a Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ50, an excellent bridge camera I used on my first professional (i.e. for money) shoots and couldn't have been happier with. It, too, remains in my possession.

For the past 10 years I've steadily increased my professional work, focusing on product, interior, and editorial photography. My fascination with movies and cinematography has led me to develop my own cinema inspired style of photography. I take cues, and continuously study the works of, cinematographers such a Reed Morano, Emmanuel Lubezki, and Roger Alexander Deakins. I consider and treat interiors, be they homes, shops, galleries etc., as sets wherein and around stories unfold. I apply the same approach to details such as commodities, products, goods and wares, photographing them in situ, giving the appearance of purposely placed clues or storytelling props within a scene rather than simply being objects without context. To me, photography is about capturing moments in time, little sparks of magic and mystery that otherwise may be lost in the everyday.
Following you'll find a small selection of publication featuring my photography:
- Decorate Workshop by Holly Becker - US cover and back flap as well as details of various projects within the book.
- Decorate with Flowers by Holly Becker - various interior photos.
- Where Women Create - project photos for articles written by Holly Becker
- Sappi Limited, Alfeld, Germany - documenting rebuilding of production line
- Wikipedia - Christian Bale’s profile photo from 2006 to about 2009
- Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston - photography of museum exterior for patron magazine

I hope I have sparked your interest and would be very happy to work with you on a project. To request more information please email me at info@closefocusstudios.com or call +49 176 67672906.


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