Michael Magin photographs transmit a sense of calmness; a paused moment full of fragility and the subjects withdrawn into themselves. Many years ago while searching for an artistic expression he discovered photography for himself and since then has sharpened his talent for portrait and artistic nude photography. In the following interview, he talks about his beginnings, his working process and about his interest in the loneliness you can feel when capturing landscapes.
When did you start photography?
I started photography in 2004 because I was searching for a way of artistic expression. I was wheelchair-bound due to an accident 10 years earlier, so there were not many possibilities of artistic expression. I decided that photography was something definitely worth trying. Of course I could not yet know that this was the right form of expression for me, but I made a lucky choice. I guess that, if I had preferred sculpting, I would have been quite in a fix.
What do you want to capture?
My main interests are in portrait and artistic nude photography. I think that one day you reach a point where you just know which direction to take. I want to capture the perfect moment and create an intimate moment between the viewer and the person in the picture. To me, it does not matter if this moment is an created by an expression, a gesture or a specific pose. I don’t follow any specific doctrine but only my own sense of an aesthetic image.
Why are all images instagram format?
My interest in square format started very early, two or three years after I started photography. Especially in the beginning I tried a lot of different camera systems, which also lead me to media format cameras. First, it was a system like every other system to me but then pictures which did not correspond to this special format began to seem more and more incomplete to me. As a side note, I never really felt at home on instagram even though it seemed to be the perfect place for me due to this common ground.
My working process itself is often very elaborate. But, like many other photographers, I find that photography consists on three important constituents that you need to consider in advance: the choice of a subject and its presentation, the subsequent choice of the picture and the final post-processing. If only one of these constituents has its deficits, it will be hard to obtain a good picture. In addition, I’m not a keen defender of pictures without post-processing. If something in a picture bothers me, there is no reason for me not to remove it during the post-production process. What counts for me in the end is the finished picture, not the process itself.
Where do you see your future in photography?
There are quite some areas that still interest me, besides my work with people. I’m particularly interested in classic landscape photography, as boring as it may sound. I think that I’m particularly interested in the loneliness you can feel when you capture landscapes. I’m not yet sure to what extent this can be fulfilled. But it is also good not to know where you actually end up, everything else would be boring after all.