Fiona Dinkelbach is a photographer and content creator based in Munich, Germany. She attended the University of Art in Braunschweig and graduated with a degree in art history, aesthetics and media studies. She worked as a gallery assistant and editor before she decided to work as a freelance content creator. Her work covers visual stories for art foundations and cultural institutions, fashion houses and travel destinations.
What shapes, textures, and palettes encompass the sensory details of your present self?
Soft colors, dark teakwood and salt-and-pepper fabric. Organic and round shapes, black and white aesthetic and a touch of gold.
What is something you have loved for a long time?
My desk. I have the same one for over 15 years. I started my creative work on this desk back then and never replaced it over the years.
What is something you have recently rediscovered?
Living an analog life. Most of my days are quite hectic, especially when I travel for work. Some time ago I started to do all of my paperwork the old way – just with a pen and some sheets of paper. I have always a notebook with me. It feels so much better to write down ideas and concepts straight on paper. I do the same with to-do lists, photo selections and my appointments.
Please share the story behind a modern “talisman” you own — an object in your possession that you consider either a token of good luck or energy.
My grandma gave a necklace to me in my early twenties. She traveled around the globe her whole life and I was always inspired by her and her many travels. Listening to her stories from foreign countries was always very special to me. The necklace is made out of a gold chain which she bought in China and has a diamond charm on it from Israel. For me it's a symbol for being on the go, for distant places and reminds me of my passion for traveling.
At what moments are you the truest version of yourself?
With no make-up on, dressed simple and my phone switched off.
Where do you feel the deepest connection with the outdoors?
Dry, wide and open places. I grew up in a small village in Germany with big woods around and a wide cornfield behind my parent's house. This influenced me and my love to wide, open places a lot. When I traveled to the States for the second time, I did a long trip through the Mojave Desert and instantly fell in love with the vast and dry structure of this place. I still dream of living on a ranch somewhere in the middle of nowhere.
Can you share the story behind a meaningful garment you own — perhaps an heirloom, or something that feels weighted with a special significance?
I own a Vintage Chanel bag from the early 90s. I bought this bag as a gift to myself for my graduation from university back in 2013. It was also my first designer bag and a very big deal for me to spend such a high amount of money on a bag. I wore it a lot back then and the bag has now several signs of wear – some scratches, the bag is slightly out of shape and the chain strap got torn apart during a party night – which I never fixed. I took the two chain pieces and knotted them together, as a reminder for all things I've done with this bag.
Can you share more details on one act of “wellness” that brings you joy in its ritual — maybe a special tea, or a favorite walk, or another ritual that you use to come back to yourself?
Nothing beats a good face mask. It's something I can do everywhere, even when I'm traveling.
Can you share a recipe or idea for a simple, healing meal that you make for yourself often?
Not a recipe, but a healing thing: matcha tea.
What books are you reading right now (or have read recently)?
I was always more into non-fiction books – currently I read 'The Anatomy of Dependence' (1973) from the Japanese psychoanalyst Takeo Doi. It's about the concept of 'Amae' – an uniquely Japanese phenomenon which is about being in harmony with others and be able to depend on them as a child depends on its parents.
What music is in rotation for you this month?
Tamaryn – Dreaming The Dark
Alice In Chains – Dirt
And I recently got a lot into Japanese City-Pop from the late 70s. It gives me that strange nostalgic feeling from an era I've never experienced, imagining myself sitting in a hotel bar somewhere in Tokyo and sipping on a whisky on ice. Taeko Ohnukis '4:00 AM' from 1978 is one of my favorites.