You are quite connected with the music scene, based on your photos. What are the challenges specific to concert photography?
I haven’t actually been involved in concert photography now in a while. But it is a genre of photography that I enjoy a lot. Concert photography is quite different from all other genres, since you never really know what is going to happen. You can quite easily get great shots since the stage and lights look great. But it is really demanding to get “the great shot”, since you have no control over whether or not or when the artist will make an awesome move on stage that you will want to capture. But I guess that is one thing that makes it so interesting; it feels like something is happening, and obviously you will also be able to listen to great music while you work.
Do you gravitate to particular genres in music performers or are you open to all styles?
I’m actually open to all kinds of music styles. But I have photographed mostly rock and Electronic Dance Music concerts. I guess the reason is that rock ‘n’ rollers are gratifying to photograph since they move a lot on stage and deliver a show. When it comes to EDM I think the reason is because the lights and the stage look awesome.
What is the current trend in music video production these days? Is there a ‘formula?
I watch a lot of music videos, several times a week. For me, music videos are one of the best things when we talk about motion picture.
I remember that I was interested in music videos already at a young age. However, at that point I never actually thought about working with that in the future. If I compare videos from then to now, I would say that the biggest difference is the “speed”. If you watch older videos they tend to feel slow, since the footage is cut in a slower pace.
Another big difference is of course the technical aspect. Cameras and grading software get better all the time, which obviously makes the videos look better. But I would say that the formula is still the same; the idea/story.
“The Sounds – Outlaw” music video:
You have studied cinematography and post production, but you also seem to like being involved in the conceptual process.
When I started my studies I wanted to be hands on. I didn’t want to be the writer nor the producer, nor the director. I wanted to be the guy filming and editing the video. I thought that when you know the basics of filmmaking you can become a great director later if that’s what you want.
But the more I have worked, the more I also get interested in other fields, like in the conceptual process. I usually have a good idea of how I want the video to turn out, and the best way to get that done is to be part of the process.
Can you identify a major influence in your visual work?
As many other photographers, I seek inspiration from the work of other visual artists. And I think I did it even more during my studies, when I developed my style and when I was learning the basics.
One of the cinematographers that I have followed the most is Anthony Dod Mantle. I’m also a big fan of the director Jonas Åkerlund’s work and I really admire filmmaker Salomon Lighthelm’s visual style. The Swedish wedding photographer Jonas Peterson is also a big inspiration.
I guess if you take a really close look at my work, you can perhaps see some influences. But this is something that I can’t really notice myself.
What’s in your camera bag? Any must-haves for beginners?
I have never really been the photographer with a lot of equipment. But now when I checked my bag, I noticed that I actually have quite a lot, at least all that I need.
- Canon 5D Mark III
- Canon 24-70mm f/2.8
- Canon 70-200mm f/2.8
- Canon 85mm f/1.8
- Canon 50mm f/1.8
- Dog Schidt Optiks FF58
- Speedlite 430EX II
My favorite lens at the moment is the Dog Schidt Optiks FF58. It is a special lens built from an old Russian lens. It gives a great authentic look to my photos and videos. It looks a bit more as if it would have been shot on film rather than digitally, and I really like that.
The first lens I got, other than the kit lens, was the Canon 50mm f/1.8. And I shot a lot with that lens before I could afford “better lenses”. I would say that it’s a great lens for beginners, since it only costs about 100€ and gives a bit more to your photos and videos thanks to the short depth of field.
How did your work in radio transition to the visual arts?
I was already studying cinematography & post production when I started working with radio. I had always wanted to work with radio, that was simply something that I had on my to do list. Then when I got deeper into my studies and got more interested in photography and filmmaking, I naturally moved on to only working with visual arts.
Even though radio wasn’t really my thing, I learned a lot from it. I learned about editing, since I had to edit every day for the broadcast next morning. And I also learned about how to tell a story, since that was actually what I did all the time.
Your landscape photography is very expansive. Are there particular places or events that you have on a wish list?
I want to go everywhere where the scenery is amazing. I really enjoy travelling, and I particularly enjoy going to places where I can experience epic landscapes. Next on the list is Norway this summer, and I will certainly bring my camera. Iceland is also a place that I want to visit soon, but there are so many other places as well.
Is your interior design portfolio commissioned work or also another area of personal interest?
That is commissioned work. A couple of years ago I worked for a Finnish company which creates beautiful lamps and furniture. Even if I prefer to photograph people this was also something I enjoyed. It’s always fun to try out different genres of photography.
Where do you see yourself 10 years from now?
Hopefully I will work with something that I enjoy a lot, whatever that is. I have always been interested in working with many different genres so actually I have no idea what I will be interested in 10 years from now. But I’m quite sure that it will be related to something visual, as photography and videos.
Anders Lönnfeldt is a freelancing photographer / cinematographer / filmmaker living in Helsinki, the capital of Finland. During his studies in cinematography, at Arcada – University of Applied Sciences in Helsinki, he started his own production company.
He started out working with radio, TV, 2D animation and short films. At the moment he is mostly into portrait photography, all kinds of commercials and music videos.
When it comes to music, he has worked for Swedish House Mafia, Sebastian Ingrosso, The Sounds, Paul van Dyk etc.
His latest music video was for the Swedish rock band The Sounds for the track Outlaw from their latest record. At the moment he is working on a music video that he shot in Los Angeles in April.