IN FOCUS WOMEN IN PROFILE - Laura Oppelt, Bavaria, Germany
What sparked your interest in photography?
Growing up at the countryside, I enjoyed being outdoors and discovering nature ever since. One day I got a cheap camera from the discounter, which was the beginning of a deep love for photography. Many evenings were spent in the fields near our house, shooting sunset or sunrise early in the morning. Later I saved money for a better camera and developed my skills day by day. Through photography I've got to see so many different places and experienced so many things I wouldn't have experienced without it. Until today this fascination hasn't stopped, I'm still overwhelmed by the possibilities of photography.
How long have you been shooting for?
I took my first photographs with the age of twelve, which was in summer 2011. When I was 16 I bought myself a full-frame camera and since then my photography got more serious. This was also the time when I started focusing on landscape photography only. So I guess I have been shooting for about 9 years in total (more or less).
What is your favourite type of photography?
Definitely landscape photography! Watching sunsets, sunrises and everything in between - that's my passion. You get to see many interesting places and a deep connection with nature and the outdoors. A trip to the mountains or the sea is what makes me happy.
What is in your camera bag?
Since 2015 a Canon 6D is my trusty and beloved companion. Most of my images are taken with the Canon 16-35mm f/4 wide-angle lens. For tele shots I use a Canon 70-200mm f/2.8 and a Samyang 14mm f/2.4 for night photography. Beside that I've got a DJI Mavic drone, filters by NiSi, a Sirui tripod and lots of additional stuff like gazillions of memory cards and batteries.
What would your dream kit be?
To be honest I am really satisfied with what I own at the moment. Of course there are many cameras and lenses which perform way better in terms of high-resolution image quality. But I've never been a fan of pixel-peeping and rather do the best with what I got. I consider camera gear just as a tool for my work, but don't care too much about it. What counts for me are the moments spent outdoors with photography, not with the needed equipment. And as a student I don't have endless financial space, so I'm limited to the setup I own and take big care of it.
What software do you use to process your images?
Adobe Camera Raw and Photoshop are important for my digital workflow. Beside that I am a big fan of plug-ins like the Google Nik Collection and the luminosity masks by Tony Kuyper (TK Actions). These two make things so much easier and more efficient. In general I consider post production a huge part of my photography. This is where my images get the final finishing and the ideas in my head turn into reality.
Who are you top 3 photography inspirations?
It's quite difficult to only name three photographers as I draw inspiration from different artists. But I've been a big fan of Ryan Dyar and Michael Shainblum ever since. Both are masters of their craft and know how to create powerful images caught somewhere between dream and reality. Also the German photographer Dennis Polkläser is a huge inspiration. His dark and gloomy style is very appealing to me.
What are you top 3 bucket list locations you want to shoot?
Oh dear, my Google Maps is full of pushpins and marked locations. Would easily be enough for five lives on earth I guess … But as a kid grown up near the mountains I am so much looking forward to shooting the French Alps, Dolomites and Switzerland (hopefully soon). The deserts of Death Valley National Park are high on my list, too. Not very realistic for me in the near future, but I dare to dream. Last but not least my biggest dream is photographing Antarctica one day.
What are you social media handles?
Facebook Page Laura Oppelt Photography