Photographer of the Day: Martin Rak

Tell us a bit about you and your background:

I live and work in Prague, Czech Republic with my wife Tereza and little son Tom. Since childhood I have always liked travelling to different countries, hiking in the mountains and woods, simply being outside. I also enjoy various outdoor sports, listening to good music and playing the guitar.

What was your motivation to start photography?

I got my first camera from my grandfather when I was six years old. He was a real photography enthusiast and taught me all the basics of photography. So I was taking pictures already as a young kid, but they were just tourist snapshots without any decent light or striking composition. The real passion for photography started in 2009 when I got my first DSLR and became interested in beautiful colorful landscape images in photography books and on websites. I wanted to take such images myself. Since then I have been shooting mainly during sunrise and sunset to get the best light into the image, or in extreme conditions such as snowstorms, rain or thick fog to capture the scene in the most dramatic and extraordinary conditions possible.

What subjects interest you most and why?

I shoot solely landscape and I always try to capture the scene in some extraordinary conditions, be it beautiful clouds, low fog, inversion clouds, snowfall – anything that adds something extra to the image. I’ve also been attracted to B&W photography, where I go for simple minimalistic scenes, often emphasized by long exposures which create dreamy and ethereal mood. My most favourite subject is trees of any kind. 

Where is your favourite place to photograph? 

I like shooting in the Elbe Sandstone Mountains on the border of the Czech Republic and Saxony, Germany. It is a beautiful area around the river Elbe full of bizarre sandstone rocks, table mountains and deep gorges. It is the place that drew me to landscape photography more than 10 years ago and I always like coming back.

What is next for you and your photography?

Because of the tricky pandemic situation I will travel and shoot mostly within the Czech Republic in the coming weeks, and if everything goes well, I plan to go to the Austrian Alps and Italian Dolomites in Autumn. 

To see more of Martin’s work follow the links below: