For the Love of Vintage and History: Johannes Huwe

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Wolrd Photography Organization member and photographer Johannes Huwe once shared to us his own journey to Antarctica, documenting the entire expedition in film. With a penchant for all things analogue and his fascination for shiny, chrome classic cars, he's back with Lomography Magazine, this time entering the world of pretty, old cars, motorsports racing, and the picturesque vintage.

The series In vintage veritas reflects Johannes' philosophy in life, a cumulation of all things he love: analogue photography, vintage cars and everything in the world of antiques. The series, which started in 2009, were taken in various places, mostly with Johannes driving from one destination to another with his vintage Gemini-blue 911 Porsche. The man himself is a collector, as he also owns a 1954 vintage Porsche 356 PreA Bent Window, one of the early Porsches made by Ferdinand Porsche. The car is known for its very sensual, feminine figure, its round and rather soft design resembling the female form, complementing the Alpine mountain ranges. The drive from Lake Geneva to the Mediterranean Sea includes 22 mountain passes and 15,000 meters in altitude:

“The 700-kilometre road trip from Lake Geneva to the Cote d’Azur in my 64-year-old cult Porsche was an emotional and profound experience from an artistic, photography point of view."

Johannes' favorite shot in the series is The Flag Girl taken in Wildwood, New Jersey. The shot was challenging for Johannes to take, and it has become one of the most popular photographs, displayed in several exhibitions and used in international publications.

"The flag girl, who is jumping up in the air, clearly depicts how pictures are created in the head and are not just the result of a camera taking 10 pictures per second to counteract a lack of creative ideas."

Even with the tools which Johannes used to create the pictures are faithful and true to his creed as he picked various lenses from the 1930s and 1940s, as well as Kodak Tri-X black and white film.

Johannes also headed off to El Mirage Salt Lake Bed, California, where the dry salt lake was transformed into a race track for a weekend. He's still in search for the perfect film photograph. "An abandoned, surreal place in the Mojave desert with daytime temperatures of around 45 degrees," Johannes describes the place. The quirky terrain is picturesque by nature, as Hollywood movies such as Terminator 2 and Lethal Weapon were shot here, and so did music videos by Madonna and U2.

The photographer mentioned too that the journey made him met race car drivers and enthusiasts alike, all coming from different walks of life, from simple car mechanics to millionaires, and it was something he was fascinated about, being able to share the same passion for vintage cars.

"However, all drivers are equal once on the start line, sitting in temperatures of 50 degrees in their fireproof suits, waiting to set a new speed record in their race cars. When I began filming my series back in 2009, it was still relatively new photography territory and was therefore particularly appealing."

Johannes is a true, wandering analogue soul. Why he takes such grand adventures with his camera comes from his love for everything that is vintage -- be it the material, the aesthetic, or due to history.

"I’m also fascinated by the entire analogue process, from the lighting with a purely mechanical Leica camera without exposure metres to thinned out silver gelatin prints. I also believe that I can take better photographs in analogue format. With analogue, I focus on my counterpart, maintain eye contact and can spontaneously spot a good portrait opportunity without being distracted by a camera display. I have to think long and hard about the planned photo and my focus is dedicated entirely to the subject!"

For Johannes, the darkroom is his home. His dedication to being as authentic to his analogue lifestyle seems unrivaled, and we can't wait to witness his next analogue adventures.


Johannes Huwe is the author of the coffee-table books “World of Speed” and “The Race of Gentlemen” from the Verlag Seltmann Söhne. His work on hot rod events has been
published internationally in magazines and online. To see more of Johannes Huwe’s work or order his limited edition books, check out his website and Instagram.

2019-12-08 #culture #people #film-photography #johannes-huwer #car-photography

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