“My favourite animal is a Lemur, I’m definitively a Lemur. Second is probably the whale shark. I just got a really disturbing image in my head of a lemur riding a whale shark into the sunset”
Kristian explores a variety of themes including the juxtaposition of combining fashion and wildlife which has gained him international recognition. His photographs have been exhibited worldwide including Milk Studios in New York City, Art Basel Miami and the Cannes Film Festival.
“To get to the point I am now it takes a lot of faith; waking up every morning wondering “what the hell am I doing?” But if you pull it off it’s extremely rewarding. You just did exactly what you wanted… scary but so worth it”.
His highly popular Whale Shark Series captured a concept that has never been seen before — beautiful models swimming next to the world’s largest shark – and brought together a team focused on raising awareness for the at-risk species. This critically acclaimed project featuring underwater film stills of whale sharks and models have captivated the media and featured in over 200 magazines and newspapers globally.
Through his photographic projects capturing wildlife photography Kristian has become active in wildlife conservation and awareness. His projects aim to protect endangered species and raise awareness on the growing illegal trade of animal and sea-life poaching. These projects include; his ‘Whale Shark Series, a documentary in Kenya with Yao Ming, collaborative wildlife photo shoots with charities such as Virgin Unite and WildAid, and a series of PSA’s on the consequences of the ivory trade with Prince William, Richard Branson and David Beckham.
“I credit Japan for making me who I am – all my aesthetics, the way I think, and a general common sense is all because I went to Japan at an early age”.
Growing up surrounded by inspiration and culture, Kristian Schmidt naturally embraced his imagination and creativity at a young age. Born in New York City, he left the United States shortly after with his family and spent his childhood in France and Japan. Kristian was raised by his not so ordinary family; he is the son of famed European stage producer Lars Schmidt and his stepmother was Ingrid Bergman.
During his time in Tokyo he began to work in the television industry. In 2000 Kristian founded his own production company Kamisol and produced over 150 music videos which earned him a two Grammy awards. It was while shooting a commercial in South Africa that he discovered his passion for photography and love of nature.