Professional Photographer Interview: Ricky Kluge Of Chicago, Illinois
Q: Who are your influences?
A: Mainly Autumn de Wilde, but I don’t have anymore names off the top of my head. I try to not get too influenced from other photographers and would rather observe people and cultures to help produce a photograph. I feel it’s more pure that way.
Q: How do you describe your photographic style?
A: Organic and clean.
Q: Do you like to talk about yourself or your pictures? If yes, about what aspects of photography? If no, why?
A: I enjoy talking about ideas and the art and science of photography. I don’t really talk about photographs I’ve already taken unless I’m asked about them.
Q: How would you describe your attention span?
A: Good…if what is put in front of me truly interests me.
Q: When did you decide to become a photographer?
A: When I was 16 and decided I’d rather photograph keep working with graphic design.
Q: What does photography mean to you?
A: It means a lot if you can cause someone to feel some kind of emotion from an image that’s created.
Q: Can you recall the first photo you took that made you go WOW!?
A: No, I’ve been constantly progressing as I’ve been photographing and my taste level has always been and still does.
Q: Do you have any formal training regarding photography?
A: Yes, I’ve had a high school class and I have one class to go before I get my Associate’s Degree for Applied Sciences of photography.
Q: How technical is your photography?
A: I use artificial light a lot and mix ambient with flash frequently, so it can get pretty technical.
Q: How do you feel about cropping?
A: I usually try to frame the image I want to capture in my viewfinder, but I can’t say that I never crop.
Q: Where is your favorite place to live and work as a photographer in the World and why?
A: Starting out and trying to get into the commercial photography game I think that Chicago is a great place to start. But if I could go anywhere I’d go out to the west coast or even over to Europe.
Q: Define the word “beauty”!
A: Striking and pleasing to the eye.
Q: What is your most favorite and least favorite word in photography or life? How do they make you feel?
A: ‘Doing’ is the best, ‘trying’ is the worst. Having confidence and drive will never push you back.
Q: How does your personality change when you look through the camera?
A: I don’t think it does at all.
Q: How do you feel about missed shots which cannot be recreated?
A: I take what I missed into consideration for the next time I go out and photograph.
Q: Ever concerned about failure?
A: Failure happens all of the time in our lives, and we need to accept it and overcome it.
Q: What are the biggest personal or professional challenges you face on a daily basis?
A: Trying to create something better than I did last time.
Q: What has been the single biggest obstacle against growing as a photographer in whole?
A: Getting into the commercial photograph world.
Q: What are your favorite subjects to photograph?
A: People and locations
Q: Do you ever have photographer’s block and if yes how do you deal with it?
A: I try and get inspiration in anyway possible. I hit them all the time and they can be really annoying, but I do anything from looking at other photographs to watching movies and documentaries.
Q: Do you think of yourself as an artist and what do you think of the word artist?
A: I think so. Anyone who creates something for a meaning
Q: Who or what would you love to shoot that you haven’t already?
A: Anything underwater.
Q: What are your thoughts on the paparazzi and their effects on photographers and photography?
A: Everyone needs to make money.
Q: How do you feel about digital manipulation and to what extent do you utilize it?
A: I don’t like to manipulate my photographs too much. I know I’m not extremely skilled at it…and when there’s poor photoshopping done to an image it causes the final outcome to look very amateur.