bernd margotte photography

About Bernd

More than 30 years ago my enthusiasm for photography began, a passion that I have kept until today.

I wanted to develop film roles myself, to control the whole process from the shutter release to the photo (on paper!) and therefore decided to take pictures in black and white. At high school we had a small darkroom in which my first pictures were developed. At that time the black and white laboratory technique was already very well matured and easy to handle. Soon a darkroom was built in the cellar of my parents. The enlarger (for all digital photographers: a device to expose the negative on the photo paper) I took over from my father. In thoughts of all the great West Coast photographers I was concerned with landscape photography; my camera was clearly smaller than the ones from my idols. I was often so absorbed in the darkroom work that I almost missed the graduation ceremony of the school; but they knew where to find me!

During my university years I photographed on slide film. I used Kodak Carousel projectors to create cross-fade slide shows and the interplay of music and images was a lot of fun. At university I studied theoretical photography and suddenly all my practical experiences got a theoretical background. Everything seemed much more logical now. Parallel to creating slide shows we enlarged our colour slides to Cibachrom in the University Darkroom. At home in my student dormitory my second black/white darkroom was placed above the bathtub.

After university, digital photography was still in its infancy and I became interested in panorama photography. The Hasselblad XPAN made it easy to get started. I rediscovered the world in black and white, but also used colour negatives and colour slide films. Taking pictures was much more fun than standing in the darkroom handling chemicals. Good scanners came within reach and so it was more and more difficult to motivate myself to get into the darkroom. But I still hesitated to buy a digital camera (it was looking for a digital SLR). But I already used the digital process with a good film scanner. In those years I mainly used viewfinder cameras like the XPAN and the Contax G2. With the Contax you almost felt like a real Leica Man.

After a long wait I finally bought a digital SLR camera and a new range of lenses. I became interested in details and learned a lot about macro photography. I was also interested in the aesthetics of the image, image composition, image statement, etc. and I read many books on these topics. The Street Photography was more and more fun for me and of course the search for funny situations. I also started to collect things photographically, for example telegraph poles.

The digital photography initiated the creation of this website. Now I could share my pictures more easily. At the same time I started to give photo courses, from the introduction to photography to special courses such as landscape photography. And I started writing technical articles.

Today I take pictures with the same enthusiasm as more than 30 years ago. The equipment has changed but still the end result and of course the fun you have when taking pictures is what counts: Good light!

If you have any inputs to the site please don't hesitate to contact me:

Bernd in Madrid, April 2017