Oliver Tjaden
Oliver Tjaden
Oliver Tjaden photographed the motifs for the main catalog of ROFA, a manufacturer of protective workwear, in 2021.

Oliver Tjaden, you were commissioned by the marketing department of the company ROFA to photograph protective workwear for the ROFA main catalog 2021. What exactly was the assignment?

ROFA is a manufacturer of high-quality workwear, based in eastern Lower Saxony. From the yarn to the finished product, all work steps take place at the headquarters in Germany. I was briefed to photograph ROFA’s workwear and products with real employees of the company’s customers, ROFA employees and professional photo models. We made a conscious decision to work with non-professional models as well, because the pictures often look more authentic than the competitors’ material.


You are an experienced photographer for industrial photography. What was the particular challenge here?

The challenges of working with real employees are different than working with photo models. Models often have difficulty settling into a role, real employees have more difficulty forgetting the photographer in front of them. Trust is incredibly important here.

Working with untrained models is not a no-brainer, and the amount of time to work together in a concentrated manner is shorter. It is always advisable to clarify all image rights in advance, because no one wants to risk or be responsible for a subsequent withdrawal on the part of the model.


What appeals to you as a photographer about corporate shoots?

I love immersing myself in foreign worlds and working with different people, the more genuine the better. In doing so, I believe that I need to bring along the necessary sensitivity and tact, because that’s what it takes to be able to move safely in different worlds.



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»It is always advisable to clarify all image rights in advance.«