Interview #417: Carlos Lowenstein

Fix your gaze on Carlos Lowenstein’s contemplative compositions, soothing tones and all the shades in between in his black and white images.

q: Tell us a little about yourself:
a: I’m originally from Caracas, Venezuela. I studied filmmaking and work as a commercial editor (as in editing TV spots). I started taking pictures more seriously in 2007 and I think part of what I fell in love with was the individual nature of the photographic process in contrast to the collaboration that’s involved in any film-making.

q: There’s a certain quality of structure in your compositions and a blankness in the greys you portray in your photography. What do you want to show with your images?
a: I am fascinated by the photograph’s ability to create fictions. It’s mysterious to me and also a little addictive. I love this process by which you can take the world away from its context and create this new mysterious object, this picture that now evokes all these different emotions in the viewer. And then you pair one picture with another and the whole thing changes again and creates new meanings. I like the idea of building this big archive of monochrome pictures and building a puzzle that can’t be solved.

And yes, I like the greys!

q: I feel like you are searching for an aesthetic in the fleeting moments that happen everyday in the streets. Do you feel like editing or selection is an important part of your creative process?
a: Yes. Editing the pictures changes them. I like the idea of presenting these images in different versions as time goes on. Maybe there will never be a “final” edit.

q: Photographic equipment?
a: I shot for many years with a Leica M6 and a 50mm summicron. I recently switched to a digital camera but I’m not sure I’ve found the one, yet :)

q: Any upcoming projects or ideas?
a: Lately I’ve been editing some images with a more quiet vibe into a project named Sunday. It comes from a more mellow contemplative state, maybe. I’m not sure, it’s still early.

q: Any new music to recommend?
a: I’m really loving Helado Negro’s new record, Double Youth.

tumblr and website.

Interview #416: Alexandra Colmenares

Enter into the private world of Alexandra Colmenares, whom paints a picture of soft tones and charming textures with her camera.

q: Give a short introduction about yourself:
a: Im a quiet observer, living in a strange city discovering daily situations I don’t speak really a lot, I’m always watching, and wondering about the things I’m looking at. Sometimes I go out without my camera just to have the experience of appreciate the moments I’m living.

I’m very curious as well. I was born in Perú and I moved to Belgium 1 year and a half ago because I was invited to participate in a Master of Fine Arts.

q: Your images are often intimate and whimsical. Why do you take pictures?
a: I take photographs by instinct, the feeling is instinctive…I hope to capture with great sincerity. I really feel that everything came naturally. I take photographs to mark moments, objects, things, days, my body, my relationship with space, I photograph to remember that everything is part of a particularly and insignificant moment, but that can contain some power, some poetic part, so I think thats why my work can be intimate and whimsical.

q: Do you prefer stripes or polka dots?
a: It depends on my mood, today I prefer stripes, tomorrow I don’t know.

q: Photographic equipment?
a: 35mm Mamiya Sekor, Pentax Espio 140, 35mm Fujica Compact.

q: Any upcoming projects or ideas?
a: I am preparing a little photo book with my project “el objeto encontrado“ I hope that can come to light soon, meanwhile im planning to do more zines, just little publications.

q: Any new music to recommend?
a: Im a very big fan of music, Im always with my headphones on or I take pictures with a soundtrack in my head, I would recommend 2 groups that I have been listening often, one is Dengue Dengue Dengue they are from Perú, and Balthazar, they are from Belgium.

her tumblr.

Interview #415: Austin Schermerhorn

19 year old photographer based in San Francisco, USA. “My work mainly deals with the unseen feelings and impressions, often of something greater and mysterious.”

q: You mention you are inspired by Romantic poets and paintings. How does it influence you and your creative process?
a: I draw a lot from the imagery and symbolism of Romantic poets, my favorites being Coleridge, Baudelaire, and Rimbaud. A lot of the origins of my photos come from a passage that stuck out to me, from Baudelaire’s description of a carrion and the eventual decay of his love, to Coleridge’s description of otherworldly music from an Aeolian harp: “And that simplest Lute/ Placed length-ways in the clasping casement, hark!/ How by the desultory breeze caressed/ Like some coy maid half yielding to her lover…”

As for the painters, I am inspired by Delacroix, Goya, and Géricault, and I try to pick up where they left off. I believe we are at another Industrial Revolution, this time technological, and that as a society, our spiritual and artistic needs are going left unchecked, as seen by the type of art the powers that be esteem. I feel we need a remedy for this, and this idea is always at the forefront of my mind when I make art.

q: What contemporary photographers are you into right now?
a: I feel the best photographers transcend photography itself and enter the realm of Art, which fortunately there are many today, albeit a little hard to find. My favorites, who I am forever thankful and inspired by are Robert Tepiak, Margaret Durow, Benjamin Goss, and Rebecca Cairns.

q: Do you like house plants?
a: I do! I love being surrounded by growing, living things whenever I sit down to make art or write. Also I hear green is the most inspiriting color for creative thinking, so there’s another bonus.

q: Photography equipment?
a: I shoot a Pentax Super Program and Olympus OM2 for 35mm SLRs, an Olympus XA2 as my camera on me at all times, and a Pentacon Six for medium format. I have been experimenting with large format with cameras from my school (specifically a Toyo 4x5 Field Camera) so I would like to use that more in the future, as well as go up to 8x10.

q: Upcoming projects or ideas?
a: An Idea I’m tossing around right now is a sort of mixture between Japanese/Chinese ink painting and photography. I want to make a sumi-e landscape, and superimpose a portrait of a person in the foreground, using darkroom techniques, so both art and photography are merged, and the landscape behind represents a sort of mental state of the person as well. I am really interested in the melting, foggy landscapes that are capable with ink painting, and the idea of a landscape conveying an emotion.

q: Any new music to recommend?
a: My good friends Adam Houmam and Ryan Daniel’s band ION recently released their debut album, which I was lucky enough to do the art and cover for. Check them out if you like ambient/psychadelic black metal, they’re also currently on tour in the Pacific Northwest, so if you’re in that area you should go see them. Myself, I’ve been listening to a lot of Suuns, Chelsea Wolfe, and Liars’ new album.


Interview #414: Carmen Alt-Chaplin

q: Give a short introduction about yourself:
a: I’m a German-born photographer living in London, where I also take most of my photographs. Urban environments are very inspiring to me.

q: Your work often shows isolated figures in a large built environment. What’s the idea or inspiration behind this?
a: I feel that in the grand scheme of things we humans are not that important. The universe is huge, and we are just a small part of the whole. My work reflects that. I like to look at details, but I’m also interested in the big picture.

q: Does photography affect the way you see the world?
a: Photography is helping me to really look at things, to see things I wouldn’t normally see.

q: Photographic equipment?
a: I started out with film photography, shooting film for years. I resisted digital photography for a long time, but once I embraced it, there was no turning back. I now shoot only digital, using a Nikon D7000.

q: Do you prefer cold or hot showers?
a: Hot showers. Definitely.

q: Upcoming projects or ideas?
a: I’m having an upcoming exhibition in Vienna on the 28 of August. The exhibition runs till 25 September 2014.

q: Any new music to recommend?
a: This week, I’ve been listening to “Video Girl” by FKA Twigs.


Broken Telephone Magazine is about visual associations and mental successions based on the game of the same name. Featuring 50 artist from all over the world including Jackson Eaton, Theo Gosselin and Lukasz Wierbowski. Published in Norway, the second edition includes a mix of photography, illustration, collage and artist interviews.

Get a copy here. Check out more publication reviews at our bookshelf.