Angle of Refraction
In our seeking of the Nordic light, we took to Illegal Studio and photographer Calle Huth. Making a name for himself working with some of the strongest Norwegian brands, we wanted to understand what drives him and how a day in a photographer’s life looks like.
Calle got interested in taking photos after taking a year abroad in Bournemouth, a peaceful town on the coast of England. He had photography class once a week and was thrilled to learn about darkroom photography from his enthusiastic teacher John Ralph. He believes this is where his real interest in photography started. They would make camera shed out of empty Coca-Cola cans, and he loved seeing the process from the shot being taken, the picture being soaked in chemistry and then finally - seeing what you have captured on raw analog film.
«What’s interesting is that people always assume you need the most advanced equipment, while I believe learning how to balance the frame and know what is interesting to capture is the essence. It may sound a bit cliché, but it really does come down to this in my opinion»
The natural light in Scandinavia is mesmerizing, but it’s very unpredictable to work with. When taking our new creative stills, a couple of hours went by only to find the right light angle of refraction. Calle enjoys the challenge in his field and says the ultimate assignment would be shooting a perfume bottle or a car with an iridescent paint job. «It’s a hassle shooting objects where the light reflects in so many ways, and especially with a small perfume bottle that is also transparent and liquid contained,» he says, but the long hours for getting this shot right equals greater satisfaction when you are done. Taking photos of watches was actually also quite the technical struggle he emphasizes, the angles have to be just right and a lot of brands will just photoshop and cheat on this, whilst Harper & Brooks wanted everything to be real.
We are curious if the top-notch assignments are what gives Calle his drive, and he debunks the concept of chasing the better;
«The reality though, and this is important for young aspiring photographers to understand, is that 70% of the jobs I get to take on are not that creatively rewarding. And the rest 30% that might be really cool is not what gives me my drive either, even though it is really fun to do these things. My drive comes from working in a studio with friends I’ve known since photography school. We have a great companionship amongst us, and I feel grateful for getting to crack a bottle and hang out with them after a long day in the studio».