Max Biedermann, Thomas, and I were looking up toward the peak of Switzerland’s Jungfraujoch — the “Top of Europe” at 3,454 meters — from the Kleine Scheidegg railway mid-station. Some clouds were rising, and we were discussing whether to go further up the mountain or fly down from here. We decided to try to fly from the summit; after an hour-and-a-half train ride, we were on top of the Jungfraujoch. Once there, I asked a lift attendant where the starting point for paragliders was. “Paragliders?” he asked me. “Nobody’s ever started from here that I can remember,” he said. “Are we the first ones ever to start from here?” I thought. “No way — let’s go!” We left the crowds behind us on the viewing platform, walked across the nearby ice field, waited for the right wind, and took off.
About the shot
I am based in Munich, which is perfect for my kind of work. The highest mountains are close, and the media and businesses I work with are not far from my office. I started my career as a journalist for different fun-sport media outlets. It was while I was working on an article about Niels-Peter Jensen, a mountain bike athlete, that I started to take pictures to make the story complete. For me, it was more interesting to be outside, working with light and right next to the action as opposed to sitting in front of the computer the whole day.
To get more knowledge about photography, I started volunteering for a fashion and portrait photographer. Using light to shape the things I was trying to capture became more and more important to me. Light and shadow, two extremes in life and photography, are part of my work — I believe less light is more interesting. Today, I shoot images for both advertisements and editorial spreads. I’ve never tried to compete in an international photo contest like Red Bull Illume before. It’s a great experience to have your picture chosen from hundreds of similar ones.