Somojo Magazine

"There is always something to learn and something new to discover. It won’t be an easy journey, but it is a rewarding one."

Louis Daniel Botha
model: Adam Woodford

Hi Louis, how are you?
I am well thank you.

When did you first pick up a camera and discover your love for creating images?
It was during my studies at university. I felt that in order to keep a focus in life, i needed to have something else that interests me. I found my passion in photography.

How long have you been involved in the photographic industry?
About 3 years now, but only part-time, as I had to split my time with studying.

What is your background/training?
Professional photograhers, masters of the art, both locally here in south africa and abroad, books, magazines, online, but most importantly, practice. In photography, you always have to take photos and make mistakes. It is the only way to truly learn.

Are you a full time or part time photographer?
Part time

Have you won any awards or held any exhibitions?
Not as yet, but i intend to have several exhibtions in the near future.

What types of photography do you do?
Portraits, fashion, physique. Advertising and commercial when it is called for. It depends on the market and the work that is available.

Which of these if you could, would you spend 100% of your time working on?
At present, portraits and physique. But I have recently discovered a great interest in fashion photography and would like to pursue that as well.

Louis Daniel Botha
model: francois ehlers

Is there a type or style of photography that you haven’t yet tried that interests you?
Weddings and landscape photography.

What is the worst experience you’ve had on a shoot?
I once had to shoot someone who was completely not prepared for a shoot. The weather turned terrible, my assistant called in sick and some of my equipment was damaged.

What is the best experience you’ve had on a shoot?
I did a shoot with a good friend of mine in NYC. I always wanted to visit there and this was a beautiful opportunity. I will never forget that incredible experience.

What is the hardest part of being a photographer in today’s business climate?
Competition and creativity. There’s a fine line and if doing photography as a full time venture, art has to take a backseat in many instances.

Do you work with digital, film or both?
Mainly digital, but I experiment with film once and again. There’s a quality and technique with film that cannot be replicated.

Do you have a preference for black and white or colour work?
Mainly color, but recently discovered a love for black and white image, especially with physique photography.

Being that a lot of photographic imaging is now purely digital, do you think many photographers are slowly becoming digital artists or graphic designers and moving away from the traditional role of a photographer?
I have seen many photographers move over to abovementioned role. Its a digital age we’re living in.

Do you think that the advancement in digital cameras and technology has made your job easier?
Most certainly

Louis Daniel Botha
photography by Richard Gerst and Louis Botha
Creative concept and post production by Richard Gerst
Styled by Roy Fire and Tal Peer
models: Greg at ORB model management, NYC
Russell at FORD direct, NYC
make-up Robert Reyes
grooming Kevin Cooper
assistant Samuel Hanson

 

Has the availability of digital cameras and imaging software had an effect on your day to day business?
It has streamlined things a bit more and has made time management a lot more comfortable.

Are the internet and online photographic agencies good for the photographic industry and photographers or are there too many options for photographers to choose from?
As with many things online, there is the good and the bad. If you are dealing with reputable institutions, then it will more likely be a benifit than a hindrance.

Do you think that most photographers are as knowledgeable as they could be about copyright law and image licensing?
I highly doubt it. I have stepped in numerous pitfalls regarding this, and there is always something to learn regarding this tricky, obscure and somewhat quazzical topic.

How do you promote your work?
Website, social networks, advertising, word of mouth

Lots of people recommend social networks for promoting small businesses. Is it something you have considered or do?
Social networks have drastically changed the way we see business and opportunity. It has opened a wealth of possibilities for new and
established people in the working world.

Do you ever look at the work of other photographers to see how current techniques and image styles are changing and
developing?
All the time. I believe that in order to become the best, you need to learn from the best.

Who is your favourite photographer?
I don’t have single, favorite photographer. But i would have to mention a few past inspirations, including Guy Bourdin and Yousuf Karsh.

What is your all time favourite photographic image?
There are many and it is difficult to choose one. But one of my favorites has to be the portrait of Sir Winston Churchill by Yousuf Karsh.

Which celebrity, actor or band would you most like to work with if the opportunity came along?
Jared Leto, Anthony Hopkins, Dimmu Borgir

Louis Daniel Botha
model: Ivan Scannell
Assistants Vivian de Waal and Gerrit Lindeque
MUA Raeesa allie
Stylist Gabrielle Kannemeyer

 

Do you use a mac or pc?
Both

Do you think it is important to choose one over the other in terms of producing the final results?
I believe it comes down to personal preference.

What is your favourite piece of photographic kit you currently own?
My 50mm lens, mobile battery pack and beauty dish.

Given an unlimited budget, what would be on your photographic equipment shopping list?
I would say most of the pro photo gear, as I have experienced first hand the impeccable quality of the products.

What do you think the future holds for professional photographers?
I believe that the future is bright, to those passionate enough to pursue their career honestly and without reserve to creative expression.

Anything else you’d like to ad?
Thank you for the interview opportunity. Photography is a dynamic field. There is always something to learn and something new to
discover. It won’t be an easy journey, but it is a rewarding one. There are many times when you will feel that its not worth it. These are the times to look back and seriously consider if photography is a passion or a job.

Louis Daniel Botha
photography by Richard Gerst and Louis Botha
Creative concept and post production by Richard Gerst
Styled by Roy Fire and Tal Peer
models: Greg at ORB model management, NYC
Russell at FORD direct, NYC
make-up Robert Reyes
grooming Kevin Cooper
assistant Samuel Hanson

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