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Interview mit Björn Marschall

Interview with Björn Marschall

Can you introduce yourself briefly?
My name is Björn Marschall, I am 23 years old, and I grew up in the Bavarian Alps. For the past two years, I have been studying classical and dry Business Administration in Munich. I prefer to spend my free time outdoors in the mountains or, more recently, by the Atlantic. My hobbies are as classic as my studies: mountaineering, climbing, sailing, surfing, skiing. And then there is photography, which I have also been able to pursue professionally for a while now.

How did you get an internship at our partner Montebelo?
I first heard about Montebelo from Christian Stadler, who has also taken photos for you. Through him, I got in touch with Hannes and Martin, the founders of Montebelo. A year ago, I wouldn't have thought that I would do an internship in the textile industry, but I had actually been interested for quite some time. I wrote my scientific seminar paper in high school on the idea of upcycling in the fashion industry, and I can sew as well. I find Montebelo's sustainable concept absolutely right and exciting. Living abroad is, of course, an exciting opportunity to gain new experiences. So, I sent off my application and received a response relatively quickly.

What exactly are your tasks and challenges there?
Since I am studying Business Administration, the economic factors are my primary focus. Above all, I find it interesting how and where the prices of a textile are determined, and the process from the origin of the raw material to the finished product in the store. The digitization and standardization of processes are also a significant part of today's workflows. Additionally, it is exciting to see how artificial intelligence is applied in the textile industry. From detecting and registering material defects in manufacturing to the classic translation of emails or texts, a lot is already covered. Since Montebelo also has a creative component, I am quite happy to gain experience in this area as well and to incorporate my photographic background. During the visits to various factories, I not only gather exciting insights into the world of the textile industry and facts for my internship report but also photos for my portfolio :D

You also enjoy taking photos with your camera.
How did that come about, and what excites you about photography/filming?

Even as a child, I would steal my dad's camera at every opportunity. Later, at 14, I bought my first small camera with interchangeable lenses. I stumbled into professional photography thanks to FENDSTUDIOS in Munich. For the past 1.5 years, I have been able to shadow Matthias, Max, and Christian there alongside my studies. I get to learn a lot, meet interesting personalities, and gather inspiration.
Today, everyone with a smartphone is their own photographer. Everyone has a camera at hand at all times. Most people try to present themselves as perfectly as possible on social media. The photos on the smartphone often receive little further attention and disappear into the digital gallery. With my photography, I want to capture emotions and tell stories. These can occur in a unique moment or be a portrait of a person. Both examples will never happen again in the same way and are thus fleeting. I want to be able to transport the viewers of my images into a scene or an unfamiliar world.

Can you tell us a bit more about your road trip and the shots for Jeckybeng.
Here in Portugal, I met some cool friends who share my interests in surfing and climbing. The idea was to follow both sports along the Atlantic coast of Portugal. The best way to do that is, of course, with a camper van. Then I thought about Jeckybeng and your amazing products, which I wanted to somehow incorporate. I wasn't quite sure how yet, since I was planning a road trip with friends and not an official shoot. In the end, thanks to my friends' newfound modeling skills, I was able to capture some beautiful moments.


Here you can find more photos from the road trip

How do you earn money?
The money I’ve earned from photography so far has been invested in additional equipment and my own photography projects. During the winter months, I work as a freelancer for an American ski brand, where I tune skis in the workshop or provide sales advice. I can also be found working as a ski instructor sometimes. After finishing high school, I worked for three summers at a high-alpine hut in the East Tyrolean Alps. I still love helping out the same hut keeper today. Greetings to Nora! All in all, I can consider myself lucky, as I am able to fund my studies with my passions :D

What makes you happy?
Mountains, sea, friends and family. Life.

What does a typical day in the life of Björn Marschall currently look like at Montebelo?
Quite varied. Because the company is so small, it's possible for me to get a taste of almost everything. In terms of location, everything is very flexible. The most comfortable place to work is, of course, the large office in Porto. But it's also possible to work in a café, the university library, or in Coruna in Galicia, where there is another small office. If the forecast is good, lunch breaks are spent surfing :)

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
House by the lake. Nah, just kidding. Tough one. Hopefully, by then, I'll have finished my studies. I have dreams, wishes, and goals that drive me every day. Let's see where they lead me in the next five years. I'm open-minded and always ready to travel. I want to experience new cultures and places. I would also love to work internationally as a photographer.

What comes to mind when you hear the following keywords?

  • Social media: A social dilemma. It has its good sides, but one shouldn't be blinded by it. Life happens outside!
  • Music: Everything. There's very little that I don't listen to.
  • Role models: Many. I believe that a role model doesn't have to be a person as a whole, but can also be individual actions or ideas. Even parts of someone's life story or statements can be a role model. Sometimes I encounter a person or get to spend a lot of time with them, and I just think wow, how fascinating is this story. It seems to me that inspiration and role models often overlap.
  • Flow: FENDSTUDIOS workflow
  • Inspiration: Alpinists, Alexander Gerst, Boris Herrmann, Pascal Kerouche, Matthias Fend, Ragnar Axelsson, Sebastião Salgado, the story of Erebus
  • Adventure: Adventure of Life

More information about Björn and his work


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