I was browsing Reddit a couple of months ago I found Zürich-based photographer Walter Pfeiffer. I was stunned by the bright colours of his pictures & the natural look every single one of his models. He never received any type of formal photographic education, but his image made him a cult icon and an inspiration for thousands of new young artists.
“When I started taking photographs, I did it only for myself. People hated my pictures as it was the time when photography was black and white, all those Avedons, really wonderful lighting.”
He’s been around since the late 60’s and early 70’s, and his pictures generally features a sexy, enthusiastic youth in a colourful utopian world. His work, influenced mostly by swiss sculptor Karl Geiser, Herbert Tobias and german photographer Herbert List remained unknown for nearly 40 years until 2001, after the launch of his book “Welcome Aboard” that began to turn him a cult icon. In 2007, he gained some more popularity after i-D magazine reached him for a brief interview even though he first came to public as a photographer in 1974 at a Jean-Christoph Ammann curated exhibition.
“When I started taking photographs, I did it only for myself. People hated my pictures as it was the time when photography was black and white, all those Avedons, really wonderful lighting.” he told to Ponystep magazine back in 2010. During the time he was 20, he also explored graphic design in his natal Zürich and did some work for different types of events, such as cinema showings and retrospective viewings of big movies. He’s not as involved in graphic design as he used to be and prefers to shoot analog. Since the advent of the computer age, he has remained away from PCs. Only when it’s necessary he sits alongside an assistant.
His work is a timeless portrait of the beauty of a wistful youth in its purest form and provides a fresh visual vocabulary for erotism, beauty and freedom of life.
Get inspired with his work through some of his publications, such as Welcome Aboard, Photographs 1980-2000, Night and Day & Walter Pfeiffer: In Love with Beauty.