I bought my first camera when I was 11 years. A small 35
mm with viewfinder for the price of 3 LPs. My inspiration to get into photography was Jan Schrøder, a butcher in Denmark, who had shown me the love of his life: A Nikon FM with a 50/1.4 lens.
My mother saw where it was going, and for my confirmation at age 15, she gifted me a Nikon EM which was the first "cheap"
camera Nikon made.
Soon after I was making
my own film rolls from raw film on cans and photographed somewhat 150
meters of black and white films a year which I developed and copied myself.
Tina Maria from my school, 1982
I had a thing for
this. I had figured out how the cameras worked inside and the whole principle
of "painting with light" even before I saw how a camera actually
looked inside. As a kid I had lots of time to philosophize on this and
to train my eyes and hands.
I also build my own
6x6 camera in wood, with a tilt-shift lens, which made nice pictures. It could only contain one shot at the time (in film loaders of wood and paper I had made). It was a very nice project and the camera works.
I still have the 6x6 wooden camera I built when I was 14.
My mother was renting
out rooms to all sorts of people, an African prince, a girl
that worked with horses, another girl that was working at the best restaurant
And so on, a lot of funny characters. I brought them to my
"studio" with its do-it-yourself lightning and did portraits
I also walked a lot around in the nature and photographed the lake, the
trees, cows and the buildings.
Tina. My brothers girlfriend shot Sunday morning with the cat Jackie, 1981.
At one stage I was
very much into photographing demonstrations and went with so-called BZ'ere
(young people who took over empty factories and houses at night to occupy
them illegally) to photograph the takeovers and the life lived in the buildings.
I photographed my
school friends, my bigbrothers girlfriends, my girlfriends girlfriends, my girlfriends girlfriends brothers' girlfriends cats
and so on.
I did few commercial
works of houses and people (fashion) and some times participated in photo
competitions where you could win a camera. I sold my first photograph to Ogilvy & Mather advertising agency for $850 at age 15.
At one stage I wanted
the passion of photography to become my profession in life, but because I was slightly colorblind
(red/green) I couldn't be allowed into the photographic school. I told
them I didn't give a damn about color - I only wanted to work in black
and white. They didn't really care.
When I got into the
advertising business in 1985 I calmed down my interest in photo and even
sold my darkroom after a while.
Our bathroom zink always had beautiful light in the morning.
I still used my Nikon
EM till it broke in 1996 (it lasted for 17 years and 4.000 roles
of film) and then bought both a used Nikon EM as
well as a used Nikon F3 and a used Nikon FG.
In 1998 I met a film director in the Caribbean who always had a Leica Minilux with him, and I was so impressed with the pictures that I soon got one. The Leica Minilux is a nice little portable camera with a unique 40
The rest is history, as they say...
and brother Martin at Aarhus Beach, August 1971 [Thorsten far left,
Martin far right].
Thorsten in 1988 being the executive director for D3 advertising
Thorsten in his AD ONE advertising and internet company
 in Randers, which he sold in 2000 and then left the advertising and itnernet business.
mother and fathers wedding 2 June 1962. In the picture (from
left) it is Poul with his mother and father. In the middle
of the photo Jyttes grandmother.
father, Poul Overgaard Nielsen.Here a picture from 1984 when
he worked at Århus Stiftstidende, the local newspaper.