When you get bored of your profession, what do you do? You either search for a new job or try and make your job interesting. John Wilhelm, an ace photographer, chose the latter by thinking out of the box and letting his creative juices flow unabated. He has been rightly given the sobriquet of ‘photoholic’!
Wilhelm had taken up photography in a big way, even though he was working as IT Director at a Swiss university. It was seven years ago when this 44-year-old started feeling stagnated in his profession as a photographer. Standard photography was certainly not for him, as it bored him. He recalls, “I’m shooting the same thing that has been shot billion of times.”
To make his job interesting, Wilhelm started choosing interesting subjects and shot them from a different perspective. He packaged them in ‘ipolas’, a Polaroid format and marketed them as Polarize.
However, Wilhelm’s photos started getting noticed when he started creating mind-blowing, out of this world photos involving his family, mainly his girlfriend, Judith, and their three adorable kids – five-and-a-half-year-old, Lou, almost three-year-old, Mila and six months old, Yuna. He photoshops the pictures with his kids and places them in strange, but amazing settings that were both humorous and awe-inspiring.
Although he considered himself a fantastic photographer, Photoshop was something he was not an expert at. So, he set off on a journey to learn and master Photoshop to add to his creativity. For him, learning the basics of Photoshop just did not suffice, he wanted to expand his knowledge of this program so that he could realize what he visualized.
That he was able to master this program is quite evident from his incredible photographs that are so detailed and crystal clear, as to look something out of this world! For learning this program, he did not take any formal training or took tutorials from informal videos, since these can be frustrating and make one give up.
Instead, he observed how people learnt Photoshop and the numerous approaches they adopt to achieving the final image. Learning, for him, was just fun and experiment. It took all of four years to master Photoshop. Today, Wilhelm has graduated from Photoshop to various other programs, such as Cinema4D with Octane Render, Lightroom and ZBrush.
Wilhelm popularity rose when he started using his children as his subjects. In this endeavour, his children were as excited about the images he created, as he himself was. In fact, his children also at times came up with their own ideas for the shoot. Such was the success of this shoot that Wilhelm is determined to continue with his family members as his subjects.
Wilhelm is in no rush to flood the social media with his photo creations since he likes to work at a slow pace. He is happy with creating an image once or twice a week. This may be because he doesn’t want to lose the newness of this newfound creative avenue with an overdose of creativity.
For Wilhelm, slow and steady wins the race. And he is certainly winning fans on the internet!