Behind the Lens: Getting to Know These 8 Watch Photographers

Behind the Lens: Getting to Know These 8 Watch Photographers

When it comes to great photography there are so many things to consider: the overall composition of the shot, the lighting, the depth, the color scheme, what's in the foreground and background, and how you want to display the object itself. But what transcends good photography to great photography is when the image tells a story, invokes a sense of adventure, or sets a mood that draws you in. A great shot is often not haphazard. An expert photographer often puts incredible thought into every miniscule detail, both before, during, and even after the shot. 

everest watch bands

Image Source @mrlumeshot

Watch photography is no different, but it does come with several additional challenges. The fact that a watch is an inanimate, small object makes it sometimes difficult to evoke emotions from viewers. The fact that the crystal is highly reflective also adds a layer of difficulty when shooting a watch no matter what type of lighting you use. Lastly, because so many details are found on the watch dial, watch photographers have to truly be exceptional in order to capture both the essence of a watch and showcase the finer details. Watch photography is one of those things that seems relatively simple but is actually extremely difficult to do exceptionally well. 

We’ve combed through Instagram and consulted friends in the #watchfam to come up with who we feel are some of the most exceptional watch photographers on the gram. Their shots are clean, gorgeous, moody, well-thought out, balanced, aesthetic, magazine-quality type photos. As a brand who is unwavering in its quest for quality and perfection, we can relate to the immense attention to detail and thought that goes into every watch shot.

  1. @Rolexdiver

Alan, aka @rolexdiver is one of our most favorite watch photographers. His ability to capture the finer details of his incredibly vast personal Rolex collection is truly unmatched. His shots are unbelievably clean, due in part to his photography skills, but also due to his dedication to making sure his watches are physically clean and free of all specks of dust or debris.

Often in his stories, you can see Alan washing his Rolexes with soap and water before taking the perfect shot. Keeping your watch clean is such an important part in creating excellent watch photography. He rarely uses props or stages, showing just the watch in all its glory. With over 215,000 followers on instagram, he’s clearly the reigning king of watch photography.

rolex watch bands

Image Source @Rolexdiver

Camera Preference: @rolexdiver shoots many of his images with his iPhone and also uses a Canon 80D DSLR camera. 

rolex watch bands

Image Source @Rolexdiver

  1. @watchmerized

If you’re looking for excellent watch photography with a bit of whimsy you’ll love interacting with @watchmerized on Instagram. He loves to incorporate figures and props from Hollywood movies into his images, and he does so in a powerful, beautiful, and aesthetic way.

On his account, you can see R2D2 and his team fixing up a solid gold Rolex Daytona, Black Panther triumphantly showing off a Patek Phillippe Aquanaut, and the Hulk wearing well, a Hulk. His personal watch collection includes several Rolex models, A. Lange & Sohne, Patek Philippe, G-Shock, Vacheron Constantin, Grand Seiko, Jaeger LeCoultre and more. Come for the incredible collection, stay for the impeccable photography, fun Hollywood nods, and good banter in the comment section.

rolex watch bands

Image Source @watchmerized

Camera Preference: @watchmerized mostly uses a Sony Alpha A6400 with a 35mm lens. He also uses a Nikon D7100 with a f1.8 35mm lens, and for his awesome macro shots, he uses a Tokina 100mm on a tripod for stability.

rolex watch bands

Image Source @watchmerized

  1. @barkandjack

According to his bio, Adrian likes to “drink coffee and talk about watches,” but he is also much more than that. He’s a digital creator, excellent photographer, blog writer, entrepreneur and a watch collector who isn’t afraid to speak his truth and share his opinions with his large following. With 109,000 subscribers on his YouTube channel and nearly 59,000 followers on his instagram, he is certainly well known and respected in the watch world.

On his page, @barkandjack you can expect to see beautifully composed images which tell a story and enhance your sense of ambiance. Unlike some other watch photographers, Adrian notes that he thinks about lighting last. His first priorities are: composition, depth, color (he doesn’t like green or red), details, and then finally lighting. He often shoots with a very large soft box, but also enjoys photographing in natural, soft light on an overcast day.

We love that Adrian is someone who “likes to focus on improvement” and who has been gradually enhancing his craft over the last seven years. It’s been fun to follow along on his journey!

Bark and Jack Instagram Rolex Submariner 16610 LV

Camera Preference: Adrian used the Fujifilm XE3 with Fujinon 35mm f1.4 lens as well as the occasional iPhone shot. He edits his photos in Adobe Lightroom on the Mac and the iPhone.

Bark and Jack Hamilton watch

Image Source @barkandjack

  1. @h0p1a

O-P Hopia from Finland was a completely random find for us. With only 128 follows (so far), his account was not one that popped up in my usual Instagram algorithm. However with just a quick glance at his page, I could tell instantly that he was a very skilled photographer. He loves to experiment with warm earthy textures like leather and flannel in his backgrounds and masculine themes like rusted metal and unfinished wood.

@h0p1a has an excellent eye for color balance and light.  He also plays around with some macro shots on his Farer Watch highlighting the bright blue dial, and shares some really awesome “Moist Seiko” shots of his watch submerged in water. On his regular photography page @hopia_photography, with over 2,500 followers you can enjoy compelling and edgy punk rock portraits as well as some pretty epic skateboarding shots. We love accounts with a diverse focus!

Image Source @h0p1a

Camera preference: He shoots with a Canon 5D mark IV with Canon 100mm f/2.8L macro and Sigma 150mm f/2.8 lenses. On occasion, he also uses a Sigma 25mm f/1.4 Art lens. 

watch isntagrammersImage Sources @h0p1a

  1. @Herrstilen

The @Herrstilen instagram page feels cozy, warm, and homey. Here you can enjoy beautiful wrist shots, often taken while wearing the same gray neutral sweater to really enhance the watch, as well as some nicely lit and expertly composed denim pocket shots.

Another favorite feature of @herrstilen’s account is that you can tell he is not afraid to really wear and enjoy his watches. You can sometimes see scratches, dings, and scuffs on the steel, which just adds another layer of character to his images. A few staged lifestyle pics with props such as wallets, airpods, headphones, and pocket knives finish out the collection nicely.

To @herrstilen lighting means everything in photography, especially in watch photography. He mentioned to me that you need to have the right amount of light to show all of the curves and details of the watch, but also make sure to have the light coming from the right direction so you don’t get unwanted reflections. This extra attention to detail is what separates good watch photographers from the great ones!

rolex watch bandsImage Source @Herrstilen

Camera Preference: He uses a Canon 5D Mark 4 camera, and for a lens, he uses either a Canon 50mm 1.8 or a Canon 24070 f/4L.

rolex watch bands@Herrstilen

  1. @thenaughtypatek

Justin, aka @thenaughtypatek, is such a fun follow on Instagram. Not only will you enjoy his awesome collection of watches, but you'll get to live vicariously through his travels. From Alberta to Belfast to Geneva to New York City, Justin takes his watches along for the ride and photographs them for our enjoyment. He also experiments with macro shots and adds a sprinkle of water (or coffee) to his watch dials to create a cool effect.

Overall his account is rugged, well-balanced, adventurous, and aesthetically pleasing. Although he references Patek in his handle, Justin’s collection also includes Rolex, IWC, and Blancpain watches.

rolex watch bandsImage Source @thenaughtypatek

Camera Preference: Justin uses a Nikon D750, Nikon 60mm macro, 24mm extension tubes, and sometimes studio lighting with multiple lighting diffusers. 

rolex watch bandsImage Source @thenaughtypatek

wrist shot of an IWC big pilot in a helicopter
  1. @mrlumeshot

Christian Kirkemo is the photographer behind the @mrlumeshot account which boasts over 6,000 followers. As the name implies, the account is almost entirely lume shots and macros which are super difficult to shoot well. Watch enthusiasts are crazy about lume and are frequently asking to see lume shots of their favorite watches. Christian is able to capture lume shots perfectly and really showcase the color and brightness of various lume plots. His macro shots are some of the best I have seen in the watch world, specifically those on his Omega and Seiko. The amount of detail you are able to see in his macro photos is super impressive and mesmerizing.

lume shotImage Source @mrlumeshot

Camera Preference: Unlike any other photographer I have interviewed, Christian shoots almost every picture with a Pentex KP and Pentax 35mm macro lens. 

rolex lumeImage Source @mrlumeshot

  1. @swisswristshots

Our final (last but not least) photographer is @swisswristshots. As his handle implies, his account is composed entirely of wrist shots. Here you can enjoy a gorgeous assortment of Rolex and Omega watches carefully peeking out from a variety of colorful sweaters, blazers, and cuffs.

wristshot of a Rolex submariner 16610

When chatting with @swisswristshots, he noted that he doesn’t refer to himself as a photographer but rather a “happy amateur” that doesn’t take things too seriously. He is a master at lighting, and he let me in a little secret. He takes almost all of his photos in his car--a perfect “photo booth” where light can come in on all sides but not from above, which really allows him to adjust how much light he wants to add to the dial.

In a bit of jest, he recommended that if you are to use your car to take wrist shots in your lap, it’s best to park far away from pedestrians who might misinterpret what you’re trying to photograph! We don’t need anyone calling the police on a nice guy who’s just trying to capture his watch for the gram!

Image Source @swisswristshots

Camera Preference: He prefers to use a Fuji X-T30 and an iPhone 11 Pro for all of his wrist shots. 

To craft the perfect watch strap is not entirely different than crafting the perfect photograph. At Everest we painstakingly analyze every curve, line, material, and angle of our straps to ensure an absolutely flawless fit and look.

We strive to create a beautiful, balanced, and aesthetically pleasing Swiss-Made product that enhances any Rolex, Tudor, or Panerai watch. The composition of the material, the depth, the color, and the details are equally important in creating a strap as they are in creating a photo.

Adding an Everest Band to your watch tells your story, creates your ambiance, and sets you off on an adventure. Our accessories are also the perfect backdrop for photography. Who are some of your favorite watch photographers? Share their handles below, and be sure to tag @everestbands in your photos so we can see them.

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