5 Questions for Bernie DeChant
If you’re not familiar with his work, here’s what the Flickrverse has to say:
“razorbern is probably my favorite photographer in all of Flickr. He brings a unique perspective to any photograph. What is most amazing to me is the diversity in his style: he combines some of the most stunning architectural shots I have seen, many of them quite abstract, with a portfolio of some of my very favorite, warm and personal portraits. He has been quite an inspiration to me and any aspiring photographer would profit from observing his work.” — magnusvk
“oh god, i want to favorite them all” — Tattva73
“Photography at its finest. Can’t say more, i don’t seem to find the right adjective to describe this." — .bn.
1. Bernie, we know it’s a tough question, but if you had to pick just one camera to shoot with from now until the end of time, what would that be?
Canon 5D Mark II + 35mm f1.4 lens. I like that angle of view, and it’s great at night. Til the end of time, though? I’d go for a lighter lens, that one’s a tank. After a car accident, a motorcycle accident, and a bowling accident, my back isn’t what it used to be.
2. Another (possibly) tough question… Tell us your favourite photos on Flickr, and why you like them. First, a favourite from your photostream?
This afternoon scene in NYC always reminded me of flying dreams.
And from another Flickr member?
“Dragonfly”, by Misha Maslennikov. Check out his whole stream, as well. Amazing work, a great view into another world.
3. What’s one tip that you would share with someone who’s just picking up a camera?
Pick it up like a kid would. Explore all the buttons, experiment with it, make pictures, make mistakes, have fun.
4. Which Flickr member should we ask the 5 questions of next?
Thanks to Ralph for picking me. I pick chillhiro! I love the way she looks at her world, and the things she finds in it.
5. Ralph would like to ask you, “I love the cinematic quality of your images, especially your street shots. What would you say influences your eye for such photos (movies, books, music, photographers, etc)? I know such scenes are unplanned and happen in a moment (which is what makes them so great to catch), but can you think of a moment you saw something unfolding where you thought ‘Oh this is going to be good…’?” Please answer this question and also let me know which question about their photography did you always want to ask Chillhiro?
For those types of images, ideally I’m just present in the moment, reacting to something that catches my eye, or seeing a story in something. Looking back at them, I can connect a lot of dots between things I’ve been inspired by – or shot – in the past. Elements of paintings, cinematography, other photos, certain moments in films or in life, compositions from my graphic designer past. But I’m not usually thinking of those connections when taking a shot. Regarding an example of a moment unfolding: One windy night a few years ago, this balloon weaved around me and other pedestrians, at head height, and made a quick turn at the corner. Folks laughed, it looked like someone rushing to get somewhere. But then it floated down in this locked stairwell and looked sort of lost.
A question for Chillhiro: I want to hear about the beginning… What led you to start taking photographs?
Kay: Bernie, thank you very much. We’ll return with our interview of chillhiro soon.