Trade 40 | Sophia Lierenfeld

Without a doubt, one of the most enjoyable aspects of the project is the time spent with each individual/group and the advantages that brings to my role as live in photographer (other than being able to shoot in pajamas whenever the opportunity present itself). It varies how it impacts each photography type. I've always found one-on-one portraiture tricky and approaching how to get past the inevitable effect a camera's presence has on everyone. But in the context the project provides I get the time to relax into it as well as that little bit more information and insight into who someone is and consequently when is the best moment to press the shutter to capture their character.

On the very first night Sophia brought me along the improv acting seminar she ran as she began a program with a new group. I never liked drama as a kid so I was so far out of my comfort zone for the majority of the exercises the class presented but I will admit I felt better for it afterwards.

Sophia's trade was two parts: the aforementioned portraiture as well as photographing her improv acting group - Improbanden - practicing, performing as well as some promotional staged shots. I couldn't really tell what was going on in most of their performances but I could often infer enough from the comic tension to find myself laughing along. The responsibility of hosting me was then split in two as I shifted to the place of fellow Improbanen member Macro.

At Macro's - calm and easygoing himself - I enjoyed the chance to chill and catch up on the growing volume of photos, not to mention get treated to the first burger I had got my hands on in Germany, watch the Blue Man Group performance and brought along for a tour of the surreal 'crashed space station' hackerspace and community C-Base for a few beers.

Berlin living up to its reputation then.



British photographer moving between hosts and countries through a back-to-back series of creative trades. Exchanging my photography for all of my needs in a mission to reach every continent without needing money.