Dietrich Josef Manz
Question no. 1: How did you get into photography?
My father, who unfortunately died much too early, took many pictures with his Kodak Retina IIa, mainly on Kodak slide film. Their quality is still excellent - after more than 50 years! I have digitalized some films.
My parents gave my brothers and me 6 x 6 roll film cameras (Agfa?) quite early. Unfortunately, the photos from back then no longer exist.
As a student in the 60s, I bought an Exakta Varex equipment from my big brother and photographed a lot with it. I also owned a small laboratory for black and white enlargements.
In the 70s I used an AGFA Selectronic S, Polaroid Land 340 and later SLR cameras Ricoh, Yashica, Fujica, Voigtländer SL and a Mamiya C 220 6x6. The last analog was a Nikon F3 HP. Remaining are the AGFA and the Polaroid as well as a Voigtländer Vitomatic 1 of the parents-in-law.
In the 90s, I came to digital photography with a Canon Powershot G1, which was quite expensive at that time.
After a Nikon D7000, I bought the current Fujifilm X-T2 Graphite Edition with a contemporary 16-80 mm lens, which I am pleased about.
Increasingly, I am also dealing again with analogue black and white photography and film development. Furthermore, I was able to get a brand new (!) Exakta VX 1000 (from 1968) with a very good Carl Zeiss Jena lens Flektogon 23.8 / 35 - a great mechanical masterpiece without any plastic parts!
Before my studies to become an "academically certified" graphic designer - with a focus on photography and typography - I completed an apprenticeship as a professional photographer. The subject area was product photography, among others with a Rolleiflex 6x6!
Question no. 2: Who are your photographic role models?
I have none!
Question no. 3: What do you like to photograph most?
Everything beautiful and exciting ... I'm not going to get bogged down in that. I use Photoshop very cautiously, actually only to correct light and depth. I like to keep my pictures mostly authentic...
Question no. 4: How do you approach a shooting? Do you choose the location/subject in advance, or do you just drive blindly somewhere and start taking pictures?
Seldom, except when I'm working for the press - I'm still a freelance journalist. Otherwise, I don't really go anywhere to take pictures. Professionally I also had a lot to do with photography, but this together with professional photographers, photo studios and picture agencies.
Question no. 5: Are there a few dream places you would like to photograph?
There are none!
Question no. 6: How necessary is high-quality equipment for you?
Semi-professional equipment is sufficient for me, as I only take pictures as a hobby. I am increasingly interested in analogue black and white photography. By the way, I often "photograph" with my smartphone in RAW (DNG) - because - quote: "The best camera is the one you always have with you! And today's smartphone cameras are much better than earlier professional cameras ...
Question no. 7: What 3 tips would you give to someone who is just getting interested in photography?
- despite the almost free photos, don't just take pictures, but try to create them. And don't rely on the automatic and Photoshop! Maybe even start with a good smartphone camera.
- mercilessly delete less good photos!
- make backups from the beginning and use a solid, not too complex management system
Thank you, Dietrich, for giving us an insight into your photographic motivation and inspiration. We hope you enjoy your membership in the German Chapter!
Vita of Dietrich Josef Manz
Born on April 23, 1946, in Germersheim am Rhein as the second of three sons of the parents Dr. med. Georg Manz, surgeon, and Mia Manz, née Bauer After attending the Neusprachliches Gymnasium in the '60s, apprenticeship as a photographer. Subsequently, he studied at the "Freie Akademie Mannheim" - now "Hochschule für Technik und Gestaltung" to become an "academically certified graphic designer". Faculties: Photography and Typography. In the 70s employed as "Commercial Artist" and editor. Throughout the 80s founder and owner-managing director of a - still successful - media company. From the end of the 1980s until retirement in 2009 employed at INTER Versicherungsgruppe Mannheim as head of the advertising department, the corporate communications department and the newly implemented electronic document management. Since 1995 Member of the German Journalists' Association (DJV) - Union of Journalists. 2009 Retirement; various PR consulting jobs in the home office. Until today also honorary activities. Married since 1971, two adult children and one grandson.