Interview with Henry Reichhold, photographer

We talk to Henry Reichhold about his career, it's highlights, and his project for Totally Thames Festival 2019

Interview with Henry Reichhold, photographer

Could you first introduce yourself to the reader?

Hi - my name is Henry Reichhold I am a photographer who has always enjoyed working with cutting edge technology.

What does your job involve? Give us the typical outline of a day?

I generally start the work day around 10am after taking my kids to school, and again might finish at 10pm once they are in bed. A large proportion of my time is spent on the computer preparing my project based work. This has its moments, but on the whole is the dull but necessary side of my work. The most enjoyable and also most challenging part of my work is the photography and the wonderful places around the world it has taken me to.

What’s great about your job?

A great part of being a freelance artist is that you are in control of your own schedule, so I can enjoy a busy family life alongside my work. What I love the most is not really knowing what I will do next - my work has given me access to a whole range of exciting experiences from parkour, nightclubs, ballet, music festivals to the slums of Mumbai and towering views from skyscrapers all around the world.

What are the highlights of your career to date?

My work with Nokia during the early years of mobile imaging was fascinating. The quality of the cameras on the early phones were pretty terrible and so offered a huge opportunity to explore ways of making something remarkable with them. From 2D to 3D work (photogrammetry projects with Nikon), digital imaging always seems to come up with fun new ways to explore the world. 

Rather than using the conventional route and showing my work in galleries I have opted for large public domain spaces, these have included Heathrow Airport, the Royal Albert Hall, Tower Bridge and most recently the busy heart of London Bridge Station. I also enjoy teaching and teach a course in digital imaging at Saint Martins /UAL.

How did you get into an arts job? Have you also worked outside the arts?

Like many photographers I started my career as a photographic assistant and then for a while worked both as a fashion and advertising photographer. Somewhat disillusioned I then took a year off to do an MA in Arts Education at Warwick University and that is when I discovered the magic of digital imaging.

Tell us about your personal relationship with the Thames River. 

I have always had a love of the river as I grew up in Henley-on-Thames - my first images were of the river using a Kodak Instamatic to capture the river shrouded in mist. The ever changing nature of water is fascinating and has captivated me throughout my life.

What’s your project for Totally Thames?

For this years ‘Totally Thames Festival’ I wanted to create a giant window on the Thames with a narrative that used time to tell the story. ‘One Hour’ took all the boats that were on the river during a one hour period and put them all together to show the diversity and vitality of traffic on the river. The two eight-meter long images were made up from hundreds of separate images to create a very textured and detailed image. In terms of perspective, colour and time the image distinctly leans towards personal interpretation rather than photographic reality. 

What particularly inspired your project for this year’s festival?

My focus for most of my work this year has been on ’time based’ projects and the Thames seemed an ideal subject to explore - change all the rules which traditionally bind photographers and all sorts of interesting things start to happen!

Summarise your artistic work this year in 5 words. 

Time based exploration through photography.

Do you have any advice for young people interested in doing your kind of job?

Always good to get a wide technical knowledge of your chosen art-form to help meet the creative challenges that any interesting work is sure to bring along.

Please see for more information


Sienna James

Sienna James Voice Team

Formerly Assistant Editor, Sienna now studies History of Art at the University of Cambridge and loves to write about the intersection of politics, history and visual art. Sienna is author of the Creative Education and Instaviews series.

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