PROFILE

Sascha Hüttenhain

A shirtless breakdancer in red trousers balances athletically on one hand in a blue-lit, smoky room.

Canon Ambassador and fashion, dance and portrait photographer Sascha Hüttenhain shot this image of a fast-moving breakdancer in Heynstudios, Berlin, lit by flash. "I have always found cameras to be marvels of technology and to this day I am fascinated by what you can do with them," says Sascha. Taken on a Canon EOS R6 with a Canon RF 24-70mm F2.8L IS USM lens at 24mm, 1/125 sec, f/4.5 and ISO200. © Sascha Hüttenhain

Canon Ambassador Sascha Hüttenhain's spare, elegant and engaging photographic style has brought him a hugely successful career and dozens of commercial and editorial clients. These include internationally established brands, men's lifestyle magazines and national newspapers.

He has studios in the German cities of Siegen and Frankfurt and his diverse portfolio includes advertising, fashion, portraiture, lifestyle, dance and nudes. Whatever the genre, Sascha's work always combines visual creativity and flair with attention to detail and technical precision.
Photography became a passion for Sascha during his childhood, while growing up in the southern part of North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. "My first camera was a Canon AE-1," he says. "It was very special to me and gave me much joy. I experienced a lot with that camera and, using it, I learned a lot about photography."

Sascha began his career in 1995 by working as a photographer's assistant. For the next five years he continued working for photographers in different genres, building his experience in a broad range of techniques.

"In my opinion, you don't have to study photography at university to become a professional," he says. "You can learn the technique yourself relatively quickly and you have to teach yourself the creative input."
Canon Ambassador and fashion, dance and portrait photographer Sascha Hüttenhain.
Location: Siegen, Germany
Specialist areas: Fashion, portraiture, advertising, dance
Favourite kit: 
Canon EOS 5D Mark IV
Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM
A black and white image of a ballet dancer frozen in motion. The addition of thrown white flour makes it look like she has wings.

Dance is one of Sascha's favourite subjects and this image of a ballet dancer en pointe was taken in a large warehouse space. Flour was thrown onto the model from the sides by two assistants and its movement was frozen with very fast studio flash units. Taken on a Canon EOS 5D Mark IV with a Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS III USM lens at 150mm, 1/125 sec, f/5.6 and ISO200. © Sascha Hüttenhain

"I mentally prepare for my shoots over a long period of time, so the ideas mature in my head and are later implemented in the project," he says. "You have to be spontaneous, of course, but I like to have a concept that I've come up with before the shoot. That makes my work smoother and more effective.

"Every shoot is a new challenge and the biggest challenges are mostly productions that take place on location. There you cannot estimate the weather and the conditions as clearly as in a studio production. More spontaneous work is often the order of the day."
A female model wearing a black jumpsuit stands with her hands in her pockets against a carefully lit wall.

Sascha's work includes photographing fashion collections for brands and this image was taken in his studio during one such shoot. Taken on a Canon EOS 5D Mark IV with a Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM lens at 50mm, 1/125 sec, f/5.6 and ISO100. © Sascha Hüttenhain

Sascha has no particular favourite genre to work in, and says much depends on the project, the customer or the purpose of a particular shoot. His preferred assignments, however, are those that allow him the most artistic and creative freedom.

When asked about the most important lesson he has learned about running a photography business, he replies: "You need to have time. Photography has to grow and is not created straight away. Photographers usually develop their own style over the years and it is important to make mistakes and learn from them. But in the long run, you will increase your level of ability and progress."
Do you prefer to work in the studio or outdoors?
"I like both. In my studio I have a lot of space and great opportunities, but it's always great to do your work on location. Of course, the background plays a bigger role here and must be included."

What are the main skills you need for your kind of work?
"As a photographer, you don't just have to take pictures. It is important that you get on well with people and instruct them. This is also a lot of fun for me and it's a new challenge every time."

Are you more drawn to the artistic or technical side of photography?
"I see myself more on the artistic side, but the technology also inspires me. A camera is a fantastic tool and you can do great things with it."

Which other photographers have you found inspirational?
"I don't have any direct role models. I find a lot of inspiration in normal life or by chance. I derive many of my photo projects in this way, and these ideas often mature over a long period of time before I implement them."

How much post-production work do you do on your images?
"I try to do most of the work in-camera. Every photo goes through a certain amount of post-processing, but I avoid montages or excessive interventions. For me, the camera is the route to success, not Photoshop. I look at Photoshop as a tool for optimising images, but don't use it to create my pictures."

One thing I know

Sascha Hüttenhain

"A photographer's ultimate goal should be to find their own signature style. To achieve that, it is important that you do your own, self-assigned work, in order to constantly challenge your creativity and tackle things that you would otherwise not be able to do in your normal work."

Instagram: @sascha_huettenhain

Website: www.huettenhain.com

Sascha Hüttenhain's kitbag

The key kit that the pros use to take their photographs

Sascha Hüttenhain's kitbag containing Canon cameras, lenses and a light metre.

Cameras

Canon EOS 5D Mark IV

Designed to perform in every situation, the EOS 5D Mark IV is beautifully engineered and a thoroughly accomplished all-rounder. "A great tool that I often use in my work, shooting everything from portraits to advertising. It's especially useful when I need to shoot with a higher resolution," says Sascha.

Canon EOS-1D X Mark III

The ultimate creative toolkit, with superb low-light performance, deep learning AF and 5.5K RAW video. Sascha says: "This camera is perfect for capturing fast movement and sport – its autofocus is unique and unbeatable."

Canon EOS R

A full-frame 30.3MP sensor with impressive detail, ISO performance and Dual Pixel CMOS AF. "I love the Canon EOS R – it's a huge step forward," says Michele. "I always used to focus and reframe the picture; now I focus, and the camera takes care of it – it's amazing. And I think the Canon colour science is the best, there's no discussion."

Lenses

Canon EF 16-35mm f2.8L III USM

The latest version of the lens that Sascha uses is a premium quality ultra-wide angle zoom lens, with a constant f/2.8 maximum aperture, for the highest image quality possible even in low-light conditions. "I like to use this lens for indoor shots or when I need to shoot wide angles with little distortion," says Sascha.

Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM

A professional-quality standard zoom that offers outstanding image quality and a fast f/2.8 aperture throughout its zoom range. Sascha says: "For me, this is a lens that everyone should have in their camera bag – it covers wide angle to short telephoto."

Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS III USM

The successor to the lens that Sascha favours is now even better in bright light, and engineered to perform in the most challenging conditions. "This lens is also a must-have for me and in combination with the 24-70mm f/2.8, I can reach everything that comes before my lens. The zoom range gives great flexibility," says Sascha.

Canon EF 35mm f/1.4L II USM

A standard wide-angle lens beloved by reportage photographers for its natural perspective, low-light capability and extraordinary optical performance. Sascha says: "This is one of my favourite lenses. Shooting with the aperture wide open at f/1.4 creates a great look in combination with the 35mm focal length. I like taking portraits with this lens, too."

Canon EF 85mm f/1.4L IS USM

This fast L-series telephoto lens with advanced optical engineering is perfect for creative portrait photography. "The classic portrait photography lens. It is fun to work with and the f/1.4 aperture allows me to set the sharpness at specific points," says Sascha.

Canon RF 70-200mm F2.8L IS USM

A super compact F2.8 telephoto zoom that incorporates a five-stop Image Stabilizer to ensure great handheld results, closer focusing down to 0.7m and fastest-ever AF. Sascha says: "The new RF optics are specially made for the EOS R system and you can tell that too. They are unbeatable even with the aperture open and simply brilliant in terms of resolution and feel."

Accessories

Light meter

"The most important accessory in my kitbag is probably the light meter. I work with it frequently, especially when I use flash," says Sascha.

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