Katrin Eismann is an internationally respected artist, teacher, and author specializing in creative digital photography and the impact of emerging technologies upon professional photographers, artists, and educators. She received her BFA degree in Photographic Illustration from the Rochester Institute of Technology and her MFA degree in Design at the School of Visual Arts. Katrin is the co-author of Photoshop Restoration & Retouching, Photoshop Masking & Compositing, The Creative Digital Darkroom, and Real World Digital Photography – all of which have been translated into numerous languages for worldwide distribution. In 2005, Katrin was inducted into the Photoshop Hall of Fame and her images have been featured in numerous books, magazines, group and solo exhibitions. Katrin is the founder and chair of the Masters in Digital Photography department at the School of Visual Arts in New York City, which is offered as both an on-campus and low-residency program. Katrin enjoys the three F’s – food, photography and golf…not necessarily in that order! Her website is at www.katrineismann.com.
DOMINIQUE JAMES: How did you get started in photography?
KATRIN EISMANN: My parents always encouraged me to explore and enjoy the arts and I remember as a very young child running around the house looking through a round chandelier crystal and ‘taking’ pictures. I am still that curious child that uses magical tools to capture images.
DJ: What kind of pictures do you like to take?
KE: Everything that I am curious about! I love the fleeting moments in beautiful light; overlooked details; delicate to coarse textures and patterns; and whimsical juxtapositions. My favorite pastime is to walk the streets of a new city to see what I can discover around the next corner. I see more clearly when I am looking through a camera viewfinder as I frame people, landscapes, abstracts and urban scenes – I am open to it all.
DJ: What’s your favorite camera and lens?
KE: The one I have with me at the moment! I have worked with practically every kind of camera – from 4x5 view cameras, to medium format, to 35mm, to point-and-shoots, and phones. Presently my two go-to cameras are the Sony Alpha a7II with either the 16-35mm or 70-200mm lens and my iPhone6+. I shoot with both each week and also love how I can wirelessly transfer files from the Sony Alpha a7II to the iPhone for processing and sharing.
DJ: Any particular piece of photo gear that you like using?
KE: It would have to be my iPhone6+ as it allows me to practice seeing wherever I am. It is also great to keep me inspired as I can view other photographer’s images on Instagram or Facebook and learn from them.
DJ: Do you edit and enhance your pictures before showing them?
KE: YES! I see the image enhancement while I compose, as it will impact how I frame and expose the image. My go-to app for my iPhone images is the new version of Snapseed – a totally fabulous and free image enhancement application. For images that will be displayed as prints I start in Adobe Lightroom and refine in Adobe Photoshop CC.
DJ: How do you share your pictures and with whom?
KE: I share via Instagram (https://instagram.com/frauice/), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/PhotoshopDiva), and Tumblr (http://katrin-psdiva.tumblr.com). I share with whomever is gracious enough to look.
DJ: How do you store or archive your pictures?
KA: I organize my Library with Lightroom CC and use redundant hard drives with one back-up hard drive being off-site in NYC. For my iPhone photos I now use Google Photos which is seamless and reliable. Storage and archiving is an ongoing challenge that I am constantly working away at.
DJ: What advice can you share with others?
KA: Find a project that you love and work on it every day. Making and creating images is a positive thing to do with your life – go out explore, frame and create.
DJ: Anything else you’d like to add and share?
KE: I admire anyone who values photography and understands that it requires constant practice, experimentation and some failure. Keep asking questions and life will always be interesting.
Note: Photographs by Katrin Eismann. Copyright © 2015. All rights reserved.