December 26th, 2016
Jesse Gussow

Rocael Heilmann’s photography is trashy. I happen to love trashy and his photography is no exception for my love of trashy. His images show natural, beautiful women who look like a ton of fun to party and hang out with, but they also look like trouble. These are the people that go to the parties you want to go to but are too afraid to. His eclectic use of cameras makes the different photos each have their own unique feel, like each moment is different and you were there. This is the real world and Rocael is documenting it for us.  


Where are you from?

Berlin, Germany


How did you get interested in photography?

In the late 90's I became fascinated by some photographers out of different decades, such as William Eggleston, Nan Goldin, Larry Clark, Juergen Teller or Wolfgang Tillmans. I liked their authentic unconventional style. That's what I've been looking for since then.


What do you shoot with, and why?

I've shot with almost all kinds of cameras: Analogue with a pocket Yashica T4, Leica M6, Contax G2, Mamiya, and Hasselblad; Digital with a Canon G11, Sony Alpha 6000 or with my iPhone. I really love shooting analogue. But sometimes digital is just easier to handle.


What do you want your images to convey?

The impression of a dirty party with beautiful girls, that you missed.


What do you look for in a model?

A sort of beauty that becomes even more beautiful when it falls.


How many photos do you take on the average shoot? How many do you edit? Of those, how many do you post or share?

Speaking on average, let's say: 300, 30, 4.


What do you try to do to stand out as a photographer?

I don't want to stand out. I just want to be satisfied with my own pictures. I am pleased if other people like them, but actually I don't really care.


How do you think social media has changed the landscape for photographers?

Just speaking for myself, I found a lot of really good photographers and a lot of inspiration through Instagram. But, I prefer keys instead of touchscreens, Vinyl instead of streaming. I like my pictures printed.


Do you prefer Oreo or Fudgee-O cookies? Or perhaps something else entirely different?

That might be a Canadian thing. In Germany we haven't heard of Fudgee-O. So I'll go for Oreos.

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