Eyes On … Tobias Dörer, photographer of the femininity

© Tobias Dörer

Tobias Dörer started working on photography, eight years ago. All along his career, the artist created complex scenes linked to the models he shoots, composing a combination of photography and graphics with strong visual influences.

As far as he remembered, Tobias Dörer never had plans in the photography, but an interest in editing photo. « When i was 11 years old, i used to paint pixel by pixel on an old DOS computer in an early version of paint and to spend whole afternoons like this in front of my computer », he said. Months later, the talented photographer finally got his own computer with window XP graphics interface and its best image editor. At first, the young artist of that time edited pictures of different famous personnalities. When his grandfather bought a digital camera, he started to learn using it, which made him very happy, and edited his productions.

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Quickly, Tobias Dörer wanted more and bought some cardboards background, then his first reflex by his own means, which put him on the next level of photography. « When all of a sudden people were willing to pay for the photos i shot for them, I knew that this is what I wanted to do. », he told. Today, Tobias has all the equipment he wanted to have, more than year earlier, and shoots many regular customers. He tells more about his work, his inspirations and the way he shoots models.

© Tobias Dörer

How does a shooting unfold with you ?

It varies from project to project, sometimes I just shoot spontaneously with the model and we see what happens. But for really big projects or very complex composings, there is always a meeting with all participants before the shooting.

With Micaela Schäfer, whose calendar i regularly shoot every year, I meet with make-up artist and stylist. With them, discuss each motive and to plan exactly what needs to be organised before. The shooting itself is relatively relaxed, as I take my time until I am sure I have the perfect click.

In that way, are you well-prepared before a shooting or do you improvise ?

I always try to prepare for every shooting as good as I can. Most of the time I think about which background fits to the subject or model I am photographing. Nevertheless there is a certain amount of improvisation in every shooting because unfortunately not everything can be planned.

How do you choose your models ?

I don’t pay attention to model measurements, because my work (fortunately) has nothing to do with fashion or classic beauty.

What counts for me is the charisma and if I caption a concept with that person. That’s why I often work with drag queens because they usually light up a variety of ideas for photos in my head.

Female-model and drag-queen mostly appear in your instagram feed. Is it also easier to take picture of femininity instead of masculinity ?

Most of the time this is simply, yes, because with women I can be more creative in the design of the photos and drag queens are very extravagant right from the start. Additionally Drag is more popular than ever.

Nevertheless, that doesn’t mean that I don’t like to shoot with men, even if, somehow, it happens less often at the moment. If I have a good picture idea for the model, it does not matter to me whether I am photographing a man or woman or someone in between

© Tobias Dörer

Is doing photography like you do (taking pictures of drag-queen, especially) a way to support LGBTQI+ community ?

Of course. Drag is an art that is not only beautiful to look at but also primarily serves the entertainment of everyone. For many years I have been supporting Ruda Puda with my work. I also try to do free projects with new drag queens as often as possible to put their art in the spotlight.

© Tobias Dörer

In addition to create a whole universe inspired by movies (Terminator, Titanic and 007, for example), you play with genders in your art, placing feminity instead of masculinity in your pictures. Is this a way to empower them, to show the world they are as strong and fierce as men ?

I generally have a little „weakness“ for women in strong poses or roles. Women with above average strength and assertiveness have a very special attraction for me.And, there are already too many strong male heroic figures.

Everybody knows the classic images of Titanic and 007, but to focus clearly on femininity has never been done before. And, what would a Bond be without Bond Girls?  

© Tobias Dörer

Plus d’infos :

Discover all the universe of Tobias Dörer on his instagram account.