I cover financial stories, sports and features, and I shoot illustrations for my text colleagues’ articles.
My earliest memory of photography: dragging a tripod through my grandparents’ garden when I was three years old. I wanted to take a picture of them, but unfortunately I didn’t realise that I needed not only a tripod but a camera too.
I spent my youth taking pictures for fun, as an amateur. In my twenties I decided to train as an advertising photographer at a studio in Cologne, Germany.
My first assignment for Reuters was taking pictures of striking German coal miners. I learnt that you have to expect lots of different emotions from the people you photograph: joy and triumph, anger and sadness.
When you have behind-the-scenes access, the most important thing is to deal with people with respect, no matter what your own opinions or feelings are.
Switzerland is a country with many traditions and customs. Assignments where I can portray the many facets of Swiss society are the ones I enjoy most.
The audience I have in mind when I take a picture depends on the topic. The media in Europe and the United States might be most interested in financial topics from Switzerland, whereas Asian media are very interested in colourful stories from tourist hotspots.
Close teamwork with journalists, other Reuters photographers and picture editors produces the best results.
I love the U.S. photojournalist W. Eugene Smith (1918-1978). Despite covering extremely difficult and sometimes even gruesome topics, his pictures show a level of calmness and humanity that is without equal. His main interests were not the rich, famous and powerful, but normal people.