Questions for Olga Zeeb

These three girls and a tomcat show that cats can also work hard in front of the camera. For a bit of tuna, even the wildest tigers are quite tame kittens. Working with cats is something special, because they are such free little spirits.


When did you start your photography?

I started to take pictures in 2006, when I got my first camera as a gift. Since then, I have been out in nature a lot honing my photography skills every free minute. I am a self-taught photographer, and soon discovered my true passion for animal photography.


Is photography your hobby or your profession?

Photography started out for me as a leisure-time distraction from my job, but it has developed into a more formal past time. I began a photography business a few years back and now do it part-time.


This picture of a blue-and-gold-macaw was taken in a studio. To further enhance the incredible colors
in the plumage, I worked with colored foils. These beautiful birds really stand out even more, when a flash is used.


How and where was the image that you entered into the competition taken? Is there a story about it?

Through my animal photography I have met wonderful and extraordinary animals and their people. This is how I ended up having this wonderful blue-and-gold-macaw in front of the camera. Because I always have photo ideas which are just waiting for a suitable model, I photographed it with colored foils. What better fit could there be for such splendid colorful plumage than colorful light!


The pictures were taken in a studio. The flashes were equipped with red and blue color foils. This way, a violet-blue light mixture was created on the bird and on the white background and made the animal shine even more. The photo itself was minimally retouched.


Who and/or what inspires you most?

The animals themselves inspire me. Every hair, every feather and every look is perfect. An animal is very honest in front of a camera and this inspires me. The greatest thing I have learned from animals is patience.


I have a photo series that I continuously work on. Dogs look out of a very specific theme, which I stage in the shape of a frame. In this case, it’s autumn leaves.

Grey and pink are a perfect color combination. This cute, silver Lab is being beautifully adorned with pink cherry blossoms. When photographing animals, integrating them into nature or the environment always looks very harmonious.


What’s your photographic focus?

My main focus is animals. Especially animal photography in a studio – this is where I have the most fun.


What’s your next photo project, your next challenge?

I would like to work with unusual animals. The next step will be to stage and shoot more exotic animals in a classic studio setting. I would like to display my photographic work in a coffee table book.


Do you include color management in your photographic workflow?

Color management is the be-all and end-all for me. Without it, I can’t imagine going through my workflow with confidence.


It is very important to me that the digital image and print are identical. Above all, without proper color management, it would not be possible to pass on images to publishers.


I already start my color management when I take the pictures. I use gray cards or color reference patches. Later, I use a calibrated monitor in digital processing.


What do you do with your photos? Do you print them, post them on your social media accounts or your website or do they simply stay on your hard drive?

Every year I create a photo book with my favorite pictures. That way, I can look back on every year’s wonderful moments. Of course, I also have a picture or two hung on the wall as a canvas or DiBond print.


To me, it is very important to hold the pictures in my hands and to not just look at them digitally. This way, an image stays with me longer and has a different impact for me. This is also why color management is very important to me. I display my favorite pictures on my website as well as on my social media accounts.


What’s your photographic goal? What do you dream of?

I would like to publish my pictures in a coffee table book.


This was a very special shooting with a small group of different mini chickens. Chickens, unlike dogs or cats, cannot be directed. But they do like a few treats, too. By using treats, I could direct their eyes and somewhat get them to do what I wanted them to do.

When animals grow up together and know each other well, they trust each other and are a pack. Whether it is a dog or a horse doesn’t matter. Friendships can be cross-species, as shown here.



About the Author – Olga Zeeb


I was born in Kazakhstan in 1985 and have been living in Southern Germany/Stuttgart since the age of four. I am an architect by profession. Photography has been a part of my life since my childhood, when my father first introduced me to it. Once digital cameras were introduced, I began taking pictures on my own. My love for animals quickly brought my focus to animal photography.