Capturing Cape Town in Style: A Fashion Photographer’s Guide to South African Adventures

Prepare to be mesmerised by the captivating play of light across Cape Town’s diverse landscapes. As a seasoned fashion photographer, I’ve unlocked the secrets of this extraordinary destination in 2020, and now, I’m here to share them with you. In this guide, you’ll find expert tips and invaluable insights to help you prepare and execute photo shoots that capture your model in front of South Africa’s alluring backdrops. From iconic locations to essential equipment, let’s embark on a creative journey that will elevate your photography to new heights in the heart of this picturesque city.
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Cover Story for Vangardist Magazine with models Philip Milojevic and Lucas Ernst of Promod Model Agency by Heidi Rondak

“Chic Chat with AI: Navigating the AI Revolution in Fashion Photography”

In a world where fashion and technology intertwine, a new creative force has emerged: Artificial Intelligence (AI). To explore this exciting fusion of style and innovation, I sat down with the AI itself for a chic conversation about how it is transforming the landscape of fashion photography. Join us as we unravel the mysteries of AI’s impact on the industry, from enhancing images to predicting trends, and discover how it’s not just about machines taking over but rather a stylish collaboration between humans and algorithms. Get ready for a rendezvous that’s as informative as it is fashion-forward.
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A Decade with Canon and the Journey to Becoming a Canon Ambassador

Join me on a photographic journey spanning a decade with Canon, from my humble beginnings with the EOS 5D Mark II to the innovative R6 Mark II mirrorless camera. Discover what drew me to Canon, its extraordinary ability to capture vibrant colours, and the user-friendly technology that has been instrumental in my photography. Learn about my exciting journey to becoming a Canon Ambassador and my eagerness to connect with fellow photography enthusiasts and creatives. This is just the beginning of a new chapter filled with photography adventures, insights, and inspiration.
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A brief history of fashion photography

You want to produce the hottest fashion photography that gets you noticed as a photographer as well as the brand you’re taking photos of. For that, it’s helpful to completely understand the industry.  There are certain tips and tricks you can introduce to your photo campaigns, such as for example inserting props, using natural light, or specific make-up and hairstyles for an authentic and modern photo result. However, when it comes to understanding the industry, you need to delve into the history of fashion photography.  In this article, we’re going to look at a brief history of fashion photography and how looking into the past can impact the future. 
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Title photo for Journal entry "Starting Still Life Photography"

Starting Still Life Photography

I’ve been thinking about shooting stills for a long time already and now I’ve started doing so. I enjoy images reminding of old paintings and Vanitas imagery and couldn’t help but growing the desire to make some own works in this direction. Firstly I love arranging things and make them look good together. That’s why I’ve often created the whole set design when shooting fashion by myself. The problem here is that you need to focus on too many different things and also spend a lot of budgets when you rent a studio AND all the props (given that it is a free project). So you have to be quick and it kind of gets dirty through that.
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Title photo for Journal entry "A Merry Christmas Time"

Heidi’s Christmas Calendar

I really love Christmas time, even more than the holidays. It’s a time when everything is illuminated, the first snow comes and you keep meeting your friends at Christmas markets. You start thinking about how you can make other people happy and you get plenty of chances to do so. There is the tradition of giving gifts which we do on Christmas eve in Germany. There is St. Nicolas’ Day on 6th December and there is the possibility of making someone a little present every day during the advent season – with an Advent calendar. I came up with the idea to do so with a photographic calendar in November 2016 already. Unfortunately for the Christmas season of that year, there wasn’t enough time left to make it happen. So I started the new year of 2017 with the early intent to make an Advent calendar for the next season. And so I started with the first shooting in March already.
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Title photo for Journal entry "The Importance of Beautiful Hands"

The Importance of Beautiful Hands

As I already mentioned in my journal entry “Shooting at the Golf Course”, when I was surprised that a new face model did great hand posing, I want to explain better, why beautiful hands are so important and how they should look like. For fashion shootings usually, thin models are the subject and this has a reason: the clothes look better on them because they won’t be deformed. Also when you look at the armpit, the fabrics of the sleeve and torso really don’t touch each other when the model lifts her arm. This is very important for the retouching – you can liquify better and even out folds, etc., without changing the shape of the other side.
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Title photo for Journal entry "Shooting at the golf course" for Solstice Magazine"

Shooting at the Golf Course

Shooting at a golf course was the best! A little dream came true thanks to charming stylist Neesha Meusch who managed the permission at Golf Club München Riem, just as she had done before with the Hotel Vier Jahreszeiten Kempinski München for our shooting with Caro Daur. She has the sweetest voice and everyone is at her feet when she friendly asks for something. She was a great bonus for the shooting. Not only because of the amazing styling but also because the golf players weren’t very happy about us walking around and she was the one to calm them down a little bit. In fact, they were right: being there was quite dangerous. When a golf ball hits your head you can actually die from the consequences. Luckily we all survived, so we have a great series now with talented new face Verena from PARS Management which is now published at Solstice Magazine.
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Title photo for Journal entry "How summer 2018 looks like"

How Summer 2018 Looks Like

To start with the best: I had the pleasure of shooting the new Dawid Tomaszewski collection exclusively for the label at the spring/summer 2018 fashion week in Berlin. It was the most lovely show – the models were slowly strolling on an elongated balcony, which offered a beautiful view over the city of Berlin. All buildings seemed to be white, as well as the handrails, except for the cathedral which created a romantic atmosphere. The clouds were dramatic in their shapes, but still white and peaceful and they created a great light.
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It just happened…

Here comes a rather funny shooting story. Back in March, I was shooting a great editorial (Dreams of a Samurai) with a new team. It was Konstantinos and Rocco doing the styling and make-up/hair and although I haven’t met Konstantinos before, I just had him on the phone, and Rocco I have seen only once before and it was already a while ago, we had a lot of fun and it felt right working together. Our model Emma was gorgeous: sweet and very talented, she blew my mind with her powerful poses so that after half of the outfits we had to slow her down to loosen the total image. It was unusual that we were all smokers (shame on us) and so we had many little occasions to talk in between and discuss either the next shooting steps or just chat about other things. And so the stylist told me in such a little pause that he had a brand new corsage from Dawid Tomaszewski, which has never been shown before and he planned to work it into the shooting. The corsage had the word “safe” stitched on it with sequins and beads and it looked very arty. Konstantinos wanted to combine it to a NIN3 earring saying “SEX” and so he wanted to hint at the importance of safer sex, especially for the LGBT community. He told me that the corsage was meant to be a homage and for the world aids day. The idea of implying a message into the editorial pleased me and I told him to do it if he’d like. 
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The Most Powerful Tool of a Photographer

This little sentence has always been the best advice and guideline for me, definitely. I belong to those people who develop an immediate passion for things they see and find beautiful. When I get inspired I also get quite excited visualising new ideas. There is so much aesthetic around everywhere, so I’m always collecting details passively. Then I get curious and start making inquiries that create more ideas. The list in my head has no end for sure. When I was studying my professors always told me to dismiss everything unnecessary from my drafts. I always got frustrated, because I loved my ideas and I wanted to add too many of them to one single project. But I knew that they were right and they had years-long experience in what they did. So I reluctantly took their advice realising every time, that the result was better than before. With every new student project, I more and more learned how to decide by myself what to drop from my layouts, movies, or photos because I trained my vision to good and effective designs and compositions.
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