If you have an Instagram account, chances are you’ve come across some insanely inspiring photography posts and thought to yourself- who are these mystery Instagram pros?! Their photos of other-worldly landscapes and artsy, abstract architecture make our pictures of what we ate for breakfast look like amateur hour. Enter Ferdinand Prinz, a former graphic design student who struggled to find affordable and aesthetically pleasing photography prints for his walls. Rather than settle on a generic Marilyn Monroe poster (you know you’ve contemplated buying one at some point in your college career), he founded Post Collective, the first online gallery to sell work exclusively from Instagram artists. Now, with an Instagram reach of over 2 million and a growing roster of artists, it’s hard to ignore the momentum behind such a powerful, inspiring idea. It’s no surprise Post Collective has already received mention in Vogue Germany, Interview, Monocle, and more. The biggest lesson he’s learned through the process of starting his own business? “You cannot do it all alone.”
What inspired you to be a designer and how did you get started?
As a (broke) graphic design student in London I was looking for cool and affordable photography art prints but could not find much beyond a few museum prints or Marylin Monroe posters.
Where were you born, where have you lived most of your life, and how has this influenced your brand?
I am born and raised in Cologne, Germany and have lived in London for the past ten years before coming to Berlin in April.
What is the first thing you do in the morning? What websites do you visit?
Brush my teeth and jump onto one of my all-time favourites, HUH magazine. I also like more techy stuff like Mashable.
What materials do you use and from where do you source them?
We want to differentiate ourselves from the majority of ‘poster’ suppliers online by offering highest quality art prints and frames. Our fine art paper is by Hahnemühle, the number 1 choice for most contemporary photographers and our Epson Stylus Pro 11880 is known to be the king of printers. All our art print sand frames are made in Germany.
What gets your creative juices flowing? Are you an early-bird or a night owl? What songs are you listening to, what munchies are you snacking on, what are you wearing?
Definitely night owl – creativity comes with sunset for me. I get a lot of my inspiration from art and advertising. My favourite music is disco, soul, hip hop, techno and co.
Describe the first piece you ever designed…
It was an 80x80cm art print of a winding mountain road. It was printed on Hahnemühle 210 Studio Enhanced paper. Made in Notting Hill.
Who is your mentor?
Competitors, friends, co-workers, my girlfriend and my family.
How would you describe your personal style, both wardrobe and home decor?
Nordic, classic, gladly too much sometimes!
What is the biggest lesson you’ve learned about running your own business?
You cannot do it all alone.
What was the best piece of advice you were ever given?
Be willing to wait for the right opportunity.
What’s next for you?
Further nurturing young and talented photographers from more places and backgrounds.