What is behind the image? Who is behind the image? Who is doing what behind the image? These questions pop into our heads whenever we look at photography. And, in the age of digital photography, with post-production becoming increasingly powerful, these questions have become ever more pressing. The F-STOP may have answers.
A photo blog in magazine form, a photo magazine in blog form, The F-STOP was created in 2007 by professional photographer Zach Seckler in an attempt to “talk to [the photographers], find out firsthand how they created their images and launched their careers”. In other words, to grasp at the living source that missing piece of information that seems to forever evade textbooks.
The F-STOP looks at the work of advertising, editorial and fine arts photographers, meaning lots of set conception, lots of lighting research, and lots of post-production. So far, The F-STOP has published 57 interviews, at a steady rhythm of one interview a month. The word of artists as diverse as Jan Steinhilber, Erik Almas, David Stuart or Sacha Waldman is to be found in the blog’s archive.
The F-STOP’s claim to fame comes from the interviews’ format. One issue equals one interview, which is to say one extensive monographic discussion with one photographer. The blog editors visit the photographer’s house and his studio, and talk about everything: his work, his career, his vision, in great depth and detail. But the icing on the cake is the exploration of one important photograph. Together, the photographer and the interviewer run us through the photograph’s genesis and history, taking us behind-the-scenes with the help of backstage pictures and lighting diagrams – writing up diligent and captivating case studies which inform us well beyond technical articles and books.