It does not happen a lot that next to the usual wanderlust that always occurs while looking at awesome travel photography I get really itchy feet and almost can’t resist packing my suitcase and saying “Good bye” to friends and family for another year. But if I click through Lars Jacobsen’s pics I’d love to take nothing but a hammock, my bikini and my sunglasses, finally continue learning to surf and be merry.
Since 2006, Lars has been editor in chief of Surfers Magazin Germany, and works as a freelance photographer for other major publications. He is able to follow his passion, surfing, almost all year and is travelling the world, always on the hunt for the perfect picture and the perfect wave. For some time now you have been able to find his works in our gallery and so I asked him a couple of questions for you:
How did you start surfing?
I grew up in my father’s wind surfing store and always had a connection to “surfing”. He had his own windsurfing school at a small lake where we spent every spare minute. Windsurfing never really fascinated me though. In the store we had a couple of surfer’s magazines that covered surfing stories every now and then. The stories and pictures often captivated me for days. At some point, I think I was 14, me and a friend decided to go surfing in France. One year later I did language classes in California and everyone in my host family surfed or skateboarded. That was it for me…
What is especially important when you take pictures?
That my pictures stand out against other pictures from the same genre as much as possible. It’s not always possible, but especially in surf photography, you can approach your work extremely creatively and try out new things all the time. I value high quality and love to deliver exactly what my costumers expected from a photo.
You are home in a lot of different photography genres – sport, portrait, travel or “just” landscape photography. Which one do you hold most dear?
Surf photography has definitely always been my drive. As a German surfer, far from the perfect waves, everything I couldn’t have was always what I wanted even more. Ten years ago I finally got the chance to make a living from my passion. I work as the editor in chief at SURFERS and can practically travel the world and take pictures of surfers.
Your favorite story to one of your pictures?
Wow, that’s a tough question. There are so many incredibly beautiful moments and stories during my travels… A very impressive experience was definitely the shooting to this picture. We were on tour in Iceland with some of Germany’s best surfers. On the hunt for waves we suddenly passed this glacier lake (Jökulsárlón) in the south. While passing we kept slowing down gazing at the beautiful panorama with our mouths open. Without anyone saying a word we parked, got out of the car and were still looking around not believing what we were seeing. Thirty seconds later everyone started to be really busy jumping into their wet suits and into the lake. It took me a while longer to get in as I had to put my camera into the waterproof case. As a photographer I had to jump in without a board and was suddenly in a freezing lake up to my chin. I could feel really fast where the water got into my suit. I had never been in water that cold, a truly impressive experience. The guys lifted me onto the iceberg they were on and I knew instantly that the excursion onto the arctic ice would be more than worth it.
Your favorite photographer?
That changes all the time. For surf-lifestyle pics I’m a fan of Mark Choiniere’s picures.
For portraits I like Jason Reposar.
And when it comes to pure surf photography I’m a fan of Tim McKenna’s.
What was your first camera? And what do you use today?
My first camera was a little Afgamatic pocketcamera. I loved that thing! J Today I use my Nikon D800 or sometimes my old Hasselblad 501C.