A driven, observant and patient fireman is the flux of Graham van der Merwe in the past and the present.
Graham is the multi-creative and digital marketing manager at Outdoorphoto, South Africa’s largest photographic retailer. Find out a little more about this talented photographer!
How did you fall in love with photography?
My father introduced me to photography when we did some photoshoots with work
colleagues in 2015, but the pin really dropped in at the beginning of 2016 while travelling across
Europe. And later that year, at the Oktoberfest in Munich, Germany. I fell in love with
photographing people and places.
Describe yourself in three words?
Driven, observant and patient.
What did you want to be when you were growing up? Did you become it?
A fireman! But they didn’t offer Fireman 101 at my school, so I chose to do Accounting and
Design. These two subjects were crucial to preparing me for my future endeavours –
understanding formal and the creative part of any business.
What does your role as Digital Marketing Manager at Outdoorphoto involve?
I make sure that all design, content, marketing and developmental efforts align with building a
stronger brand, and that these support our brand culture, which is to provide a natural habitat for
amateur and professional photographers alike. More specifically, I track data and sales
What is your favourite style of photography and why?
Certainly street photography. I usually find a comfortable spot at a coffee shop from which to
observe the passers-by while enjoying the house blend. When a photo opportunity reveals itself,
I take it from there.
It’s natural and unpretentious: With street photography, you only have one shot to make it count,
and if you missed it, it’s gone forever. There’s no worrying about fly-away hair, make-up or
posing of models, or even 100 photos just to capture the perfect image of a bird in flight.
What photo gear do you use?
My gear includes a Nikon D750, Df and F3, complemented by the following lenses:
● Nikon 28mm f/2.8D
● Nikon 35mm f/2D
● Nikon 58mm f/1.4G
● Nikon 85mm f/1.4D
I edit using Adobe Lightroom CC.
Choose - film or digital, and why?
It’s difficult to choose. If it’s for street photography, definitely film. Although magical moments
are somewhat unexpected, you generally still have time to compose the shot and focus on the
subject matter. When on family holidays, I’ll go with digital as it allows you to do a bit of
What future trends do you predict for street photography?
Actually printing photographs as it’s the final step in creating and sharing beautiful shots.
By day, you’re an avid digital marketer - what do you do for fun away from work?
Cycling (uni-cycling too), clay pigeon and pistol (IPSC) shooting, 4×4 adventures and spending time with my family.