Today, we have the pleasure of interviewing Patrick Schmetzer, a passionate Photographer and Filmmaker.
He has become known in the industry for his extraordinary style through cooperation with various large corporations and hotel chains. He learned early on that believing in one's own potential is the fuel for igniting the creative energy and that this motivates one to turn dreams into true visions.
Hi Patrick, Great to have you with us today! How did you get into the photography business?
It all started with Instagram, really, when Instagram first launched and where we didn't have any great filters or any editing features. I had to take daily walks with my dog Sally, which I tried to schedule so we would catch the sunset together. ; hold my camera against the sun (iPhone 4 back in the days) and pressed the big shoot button. Soon, I got better and better, upgraded my iPhone to a Canon 60D, and I was just taking images every day, edited them like crazy on Lightroom. Soon, I built a Fanbase, had my first job, where I needed to make a company in order to write bills. Business got bigger, clients better, prices went up. Built up my 2nd Business, and here I am 😉
In your opinion, what makes a good photograph?
It needs to force an emotion in the viewer. I want to feel something when I look at a picture. I don't like when it's over-edited, but I like it when it feels a bit “unreal,” but you aren't 100% sure if it is really unreal or you just had a really lucky moment. I try to melt my foreground within the background, sometimes do sky replacement, rebuild lights, take out objects from the image that aren't smooth for the eye. It is a mix of many things, I believe.
Do you like to travel?
Of course. Before Corona, I tried to visit another country at least 2x a month. I love seeing new cultures, new spots, love meeting new people, fancy hotels, delicious food, and capturing every moment with my camera and making people happy with it.
What do you like most about your job?
That every day is different, it is a lot of stress, and you need to keep being creative; every day, you cant rest mentally, which I love. It forces me to improve myself, my skills in many ways.
What do you like least about your job?
To be honest, I really don't like “social media marketing” and “sharing my life with others” I'm not that guy that loves promoting himself, I try to do what's necessary for my business, but I do not like to share many personal things out of my travel trips or my client work. I know it would help me a lot, especially for my fanbase, but I almost like my privacy.
What is special about the photography genre you specialize in?
I try to specialize in many genres, as you can see on my website. It is A LOT of stress because you need to improve yourself on so many levels, but I found out that every genre where I improve myself indirectly makes me understand photography and filmmaking a little bit more, and it helps me get creative images that other photographers can't take. Hotel Photography, Real Estate Photography and Landscape Photography, for example. As a Hotel, you need amazing images, that look real to the hotel, but it needs to almost create emotions in the viewer. Most Hotel photographers make great content, but their images ALL look very similar. They got this Classic Blue Sky, every summer like looking, and they are “Hotel Standard Images”. But what do you do when you need to stand out from all other Hotels? When you combine Landscape Photography with Exterior, you can create a mix of both worlds into one. You melt both into one and make it look like a fairy tale.
What should be the criteria for clients when choosing a photographer?
It all depends really on the genre. An Event Photographer needs to be really good with Guests. A Food and Product Photographer needs to be really good with details. No one is going to care if he takes a lot or what he is wearing, or how he is behaving. The End Result matters. As in an Event, when the photographer is not in a good mood, he will not get good images.
What is strictly prohibited during photo shoots?
Lack of sleep. When your mind is not 100% focused on the situation, when you take images, you need to force yourself into the scene.
What details are often overlooked but recognized by a photographer?
Many many details, especially when you shoot in bars, restaurants, or anywhere where people are working. When you take images, everything needs to look better than new. When I go into places to shoot, the customer already cleaned up, but I still find at least 10-20 things that we need to move, or clean, or reposition.
How do you define success? How do you measure it?
I think success is when you do what you love and are good at it. Many people measure success with money, which is somewhat true. Money just shows you that what you do is better than average. It is a good measurement for success, but I do not think just money makes you happy. For me, I am successful when I fulfill my dreams, my goals, and when I turn into this person that I visualize myself to be.
Fantastic! So tell us, how can people find out more about you?
Thank you so much, Patrick, for giving us your precious time! We wish you all the best for your journey ahead!