HONEST. – analog photography magazine with personality instead of business character

The Photographers magazine was founded by three friends, connected by the love for good photography. They´ve created a wonderful website around analog photography and an impressive print magazine. We´ve talked to Luca, one of the founder, who explained us the love for analog pictures and her definition about a real art object.

Personality instead of business character

PA1: Hi Luca, please tell us something about you and your Magazine HONEST.

Luca: I am a full time photographer, who had the urge to shoot on film again going back to my roots. At one point I pitched my idea to 2 friends, Stefanie & Kav so, HONEST. started as a project between friends. It all began as a conversation over drinks as to why there wasn’t a magazine really focusing on the astounding analog work still coming out, how photography has become something people experience almost exclusively online, really a long list of what we wanted to see and what we wanted changed in how photography is experienced.

And when you’re friends, of course you push each other, of course you want to encourage the other person, especially when you both agree so strongly on something. So we pushed each other into it. You can give up on an idea, but you can’t give up on a friend. That was the driving force behind the creation of HONEST.


© Adi Putra

PA1: What is the special feature of HONEST., comparing to other Magazines?

Luca: We are seriously blown away by all of our photographers and by all the series we receive and look through, and we want to do them justice. So the decisions of how the magazine is laid out and what photos, what series get in, and in what order, it’s all pined over. It’s not some decisions being made by a big committee who are taking ad revenue and press agents and exposure and all this into consideration. There’s no sausage factory behind the scenes, it’s all very personal. We love and respect our photographers and we think it shows. That’s also the reason why we didn’t want to clutter the magazine. We want these photos to really be experienced, for the readers to be able to absorb and appreciate each one.

PA1: Your Magazine is about analog photography, can you explain your love for the analog technique.

Luca: This feeds right into the whole personal aspect I mentioned. There is an intimacy to analog photography and we always hear it being framed in opposition to digital photography, but I think that misses the point. We both started out shooting analog, and there’s an excitement behind it, behind the entire process, from shooting to developing to seeing the final product. There’s a sense that you’ve captured a moment in time, saved it from being lost, and it becomes your responsibility from there on.

We didn’t have a chance when we were first falling in love with photography to shoot the same scene a dozen times until we were satisfied. Nowadays, we both shoot digital too, of course we shoot digital too. But seeing an analog series has always brought back that twinge of excitement, the fact that someone stole this split second and even they didn’t know what they had until they developed it. In every analog photo I think there’s a moment that was lost for awhile, and then brought back. That’s a feeling only analog gives us.

When does a photo become an art object?


© Nika de Carlo

PA1: What does an image need, for being a real art object?

Luca: Not every analog picture has the ability for an art object. A great photograph creates a strong feeling & Emotion, that’s art in our eyes. It takes you somewhere, it tells a story. At best you want to hang it up on your wall.

Tipps for photography beginner: Good Lab, learn from mistakes, used camera and have fun!

PA1: Our readers are always happy about professionals photography tips. What are your main tips about analog photography, like camera setting, light….?

Luca: Well, generally speaking most Filmstocks like to be 1-2 stops overexposed ( but not all, Kodak Ektar for example). There is plenty of great information out there – I really like Mastin Labs guides & tutorials (their LR presets are developed for Hybrid shooters, and they also give great advice for getting into shooting film).

  • Find a good Lab you can trust, for Europe we really love working together with Carmencita Film Lab. In the US, we prefer Richards Photo Lab and Indie Film Lab.
  • Start shooting, write down what you did. Learn from your mistakes and keep shooting.
  • There are fantastic used analog cameras out there to get started. 35mm, Medium Format and even Large Format. Our favourite ones are a Leica M3 & a Mamiya 645. Just go to the used camera store and have fun, there is something for every budget!

© Luca-Mercedes Stemer

PA1: And finally, what are your favorite photo locations? On your blog are heaps of outdoor images, do you prefer shootings in the nature?

Luca: It doesn’t really matter, we do prefer natural light though. In the end photography is drawing with light, understand light, master light, and than do whatever you want. Art is learning the “rules” and than break them. Or not. But location wise – the desert. Joshua Tree, Marfa, White Sands. There is something magical about it.

Thank you Luca for the nice interview, we´re excited for your next Issue.
For more Information about HONEST., follow the links: