Thomas Dworzak on the Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II

ABOUT THOMAS

Thomas Dworzak is a German photojournalist based in Paris, France, who covers pressing news stories from around the world. He has produced a number of books, including *M*A*S*H Iraq (2007), Kavkaz (2011) and Beyond Sochi (2014). In 2006, Thomas shot the New York Marathon while also running it himself. Thomas became a Magnum Photos nominee in 2000 and a full member in 2004. Thomas currently uses an Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II.

Thomas Dworzak has covered some of the most prominent news stories of the last twenty years.

From the 2015 Paris terror attacks to personal projects such as The Dark World of Pokémon Go!, he has documented and explored the most conflicting elements of human behaviour and society. 

When asked about his personal approach to image-making, Thomas describes it simply as immersing. “I’m just trying to live my life, and take pictures in the least disrupting way, for me and the people I photograph,” he explains. “I’m drawn to photojournalism by curiosity, curiosity, and again, curiosity, and the unpredictability of it.” 

RUSSIA, Moscow, 2017/07-08. Miss Moscow pre-selection. The woman in camouflage is a graduate of the FSB academy and insisted on appearing in uniform

Thomas’ latest focus has been to finish A Russian Journal Revisited, which has seen him travelling with writer Julius Strauss in the footsteps of John Steinbeck and Robert Capas’ 1947 book, A Russian Journal, through Russia, Ukraine and Georgia. The images featured here are a selection from the series. 

RUSSIA, Moscow, 2017/07-08. Circus in Dubrovka Theatre. Site of the 2002 Nord-Ost hostage crisis when Chechen militants took theatregoers hostage and at least 140 of the hostages were killed by gas used during the storming of the theatre

Though Thomas’ interest hasn’t wavered since he first started shooting in college, his photographic style has certainly evolved. “I think I tried to shoot ‘fancier’ without much success in my earlier years. Now I embrace the straightforward way,” he says. “I used to try to get really close. Now I want more distance.” 

Thomas has covered a myriad of different international news stories, and worked as a TIME Magazine contract photographer between 2005 to 2008. Although he is still actively available for assignments, he has his own ideas for projects. “I mostly come up with an idea of what I want to do in a vague way, and then find ways to finance it with all kinds of different supports,” he explains. 

RUSSIA, Moscow, 2017/07-08. Miss Moscow pre-selection

After spending most of his film years passionately shooting with Olympus OM1s and OM2s, his current camera of choice is the Olympus O-MD E-M1 Mark II. “When the opportunity came to test this new model, I was very eager to try it out. So far, I’m very happy.” 

Having covered so many major conflicts, does Thomas feel his imagery has some overarching purpose? “In the best possible situation, if I manage to create confusion and reflection, then I think I have done an OK job.” 

The Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II

Thomas' kit

The Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II is Thomas’ latest companion. The camera is compact and weighs just 500g, with a robust construction that enables it to go where DSLR cameras can’t. 

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