Who are you :
Robert Götzfried, born an and raised in Lindau, southern Germany. I am a music, design and photography/art lover.
Your current job :
Photographer , Senior Media Designer and associate professor for photography.
In which city are you located?
A word to define what kind of worker you are :
When taking photos: a quiet one, usually people won’t notice if I’m there or not. I’m always working on my own. My photos usually follow a strict concept and they are part of a series.
As a designer: pretty chatty and always exchanging ideas with colleagues.
What tools are essential to your life (app, software, etc..)
The Adobe CC Suite, my cameras, my lenses, my tripod and remote control.
What does your office space look like?
Small, and always too many things/ideas on the table. In the end I would call my office the places where I take my photos because that’s where I’m actually working. The actual desk is something that is necessary but I’m really not a big fan of post processing my photos. It’s something I do because it has to be done but the actual part of my work that brings joy to me is being out there and taking the shots.
What kind of music do you listen when you are working ?
I love lots of stuff! I have been working in record stores for a long time and due to that I’m very open to a wide range of music. I like “the newer” Talk Talk records like “Spirit of Eden”, Steve Reich’s “Music for 18 musicians” or S. Carey’s “All we grow” a lot but I’m also a big fan of Bluegrass music. Gillian Welch for example is a real favorite.
Do you have a way to organize your day to maximize your work ?
I am not really driven by efficiency. When I work as a photographer I’m mostly working on free projects - I’m not working on “jobs” for most of the time. Due to that I don’t feel the pressure to deliver anything special in a certain time. My experience is that I can’t push things to maximize the outcome. Regarding my work as a photographer that’s a pretty comfortable situation. As a designer I’m driven by projects that clients pay for – that’s a different story of cause.
What tips would you give to improve productivity ?
I got the feeling that way to many creatives care about their technical equipment rather than the concept of their work. Don’t get my wrong, I love my gear and it’s important to have the right equipment that you need to take the shots you want to take. I simply believe it’s not important to have the latest model of whatsoever lens or camera body. Go out and take shots instead of hanging out in forums. The more you try the more you’ll find out what communicates your story the best. When I shot my series “Looking down on Munich” for Canon Europe I used a Canon 6D and an old 24-105mm lens – not the fanciest gear in the world but I think the concept of the project was good and I could have delivered the same kind of work with something way cheaper as well …
You’re better than your colleagues to :
Oh, I would never say that I’m better than anyone else. I do what I’m doing because it makes me feel good. As I said before – I’m mostly working on free projects. Of course I hope that people like my work and I get real satisfaction out of it when I receive good feedback of if someone buys a print of my work. It’s really up to the people out there to decide if I’m good or not.
What is the best advice anyone has given you ?
“Go out and try. There is a fair chance that you might fail but you’d rather fail on a high level than being middle class.” These were exactly the words my professor said to me when I studied back in 2000. We actually didn’t like each other very much but I’m still thankful that he pushed me and made me try things instead of choosing the comfortable option.
What is your best tip for saving time ?
When I go out to take photos I always have an Idea about what I want to do. As a result of that I always have an idea what I want to bring home. Usually the outcome is different anyway but I started out with a clear intention and I think that makes things easier. That’s probably only a good advice for someone who’s working in very strict series like I do. If you’re more into street photography you better be a very patient person I guess. I mean talking about my pool series for example I needed to be very patient in a different way because I had to talk to so many people to get in these buildings. I had to get up blood y early in morning, too.
What is your routine start and end of the day?
Wow, I have never thought about this before. In the morning I turn on the radio, have a shower and brush my teeth. I guess that’s not a very creative approach, right? In the night I read a bit in a book or a magazine. Currently I’m reading “Hillbilly elegy” by J.D. Vance – a book I enjoy a lot.
Aside from your computer and your phone, what gadget can you not you go without?
When I’m going out to take shots I usually hop in my Triumph Bonneville or on my Vespa. For me taking photos is linked to riding on a motorbike or a Vespa for most of the time.