We are back with another Hahnemühle Photography Month. This year we want to show how diverse photography and fine art printing is and can be. Each week we will focus on selected highlights and topics. During our first week, we will talk about Wildlife and Landscape Photography and how it can follow a mission. Together with our friends from Prints for Wildlife, we will share various videos, images and interviews from participating photographers.
Kicking off our interview series during the first week of the Hahnemühle Photography Month is Vladimir Cech Jr.!
Could you introduce yourself in 3-4 sentences?
“Hi, my name is Vladimir Cech Jr., I´m 33 years old, born in beautiful little town in west of Czech Republic. I am wildlife and conservation photographer with main focus on rare and endangered species of cats – big or small, it doesn´t matter.”
How and when did you figure out you wanted to become a Wildlife/Nature photographer?
“I didn´t study any kind of photography or art and I got a first camera to my hands after my first son was born in 2010. After that it was quick and my transformation from my little son to nature and animals specifically was very natural because I grew up in family of nature lovers and right next to a beautiful forests – Czech Forest and Böhmerwald. Soon after I went out to India for my first photography “expedition” and I fell in love with wild felines – Tigers! And because back home in Czech Republic we don´t have tigers … it was the start of my other big passion and quite obsession – camera trapping! I am using home-made DSLR camera traps and trying to capture very rare, shy and endangered species like our Eurasian lynx, European wildcat or snow leopard in Mongolia and persian leopard in Armenia.”
Why do you print your images?
“I am so sorry for this giant cliché but I follow the rule that “the real photo is on paper” and after you taste this form for the first time as a photographer, it will be the most popular form of your presentation at 99% I bet. I am doing “printing” since my first steps in photography and tried several labs and methods and come from the very bad self-prints at home to the quality of fine art printing with real masters in the field. Then the final product – print can cause much bigger impact on people, potential clients or simple animal lovers because your idea as a photographer is materialized in the form of immortal art and I love it!”
When it comes to the paper choice – why did you go for Hahnemühle?
“Very simple – my printer recommended these products to me, I trusted him and I don´t regret this choice. I use Hahnemühle Photo Rag® Baryta 315g for my limited edition prints.”
What is one of the funniest/ most spectacular/ formative/ emotional or unforgettable memory you have made while shooting and/or printing?
“While shooting? I guess all of my rare “meetings” eyes to eyes with animals like tigers or lynx are very special to me. And while printing? When I took over an order of really giant-format images for my new photography atelier when my clients or friends can see and enjoy the huge difference between the digital and real experience.”
Why do you support Prints for Wildlife with your work and why do you think the cause is important?
“I already said or wrote that somewhere but I stand behind it. It is no longer enough to just show people a good photo, technically perfect picture … you have to impress them with the different approach, perspective, rarity. It´s not enough to “tap people’s shoulders”, you need to “thrash their heads with a mallet” … figuratively speaking (writing) 🙂 and that is also the effect of such a big and common project like Prints For Wildlife – not just get people amazing prints but raise the awareness throughout the whole process, raise the money and help where needed.”
Prints for Wildlife is a fundraiser aiming to ensure protected areas continue to deliver benefits to people and wildlife during the COVID pandemic. More than 170 wildlife photographers, including renown international and emerging and local wildlife photogrpahers, have come together to mobilise needed support for one cause: to continue the protection of vital landscapes in Africa. The fundraiser runs from 11 July to 11 August 2021. All funds collected via the print sale go directly to conservation non-profit African Parks. The price per print is 100 US Dollar excluding shipping. 100% of the proceeds (after printing and handling) will be donated to African Parks. All prints are printed on our sustainable Natural Line Paper Hahnemühle Hemp from our Digital FineArt Collection.
Make sure check out the images Vladimir donated to the Prints for Wildlife fundraiser.