After the travel photographer, Roman Königshofer – better known as rawmeyn – let us repost one of his pictures, we knew we had to get to know him better. Having returned recently from an eight-month trip, Roman was happy to answer our questions. One thing was obvious right from the start – he loves nature and being in it with all his heart. Scrolling through his profile, one can’t stop and be amazed by his beautiful mountain and ocean shots; they obviously are an integral part of his life. From New Zealand and Iceland, over Vietnam to Nepal and back to his homeland the Steiermark in Austria, the globetrotter explores landscapes on all continents. He takes us with him up to freezing heights, to crystal clear lake shores, and surfs at untouched bays. His scenic pictures give us an authentic view into the raw and breathtaking landscapes of our planet.
Tell us a bit about yourself and where you grew up?
I grew up in the country, in a region called the Steiermark, located between Vienna and Graz. I had everything I needed and thought I was living right in the mountains. Turns out I was wrong; actually, I used to live on top of some hills, the foothills of the Eastern Alps to be precise. That didn’t matter to me, though, I enjoyed every second of it. I have always been active and tried every sport possible where I lived; mostly though, I swam all year round and went skiing in winter. This was of course always on top of going to school.
What impact did your surroundings have on you, have you always enjoyed nature?
I have always enjoyed being outside, in the woods especially. When I was younger, I had a treehouse at my grandpa’s. Going skiing and snowboarding then led me up the mountains, and I’ve never looked back since then.
Have you always had the travel bug or how did you start?
With 19, I did my first surfing trip to Portugal for two weeks, and I was hooked immediately. Surfing was my thing. But it’s hard to do in Austria, as you can imagine, and river surfing wasn’t my thing. So what I did was, while I studied design, I saved up as much as possible, and during my semester break, I went surfing for as long as possible, living off only the bare minimum. I did that for quite a while, and it was an amazing time of my life! And that’s how it all started…
How did your career develop, how did you become a photographer?
I first took an interest in photography when I was 15 years old. I was snowboarding at the time, and all the magazines always featured some really cool shots. At 18, I was still going at it, even snowboarded semi-professional; I had a crew, and we wanted to capture our tricks, so we began taking pictures. Back then, the internet became more and more popular, and you could make your first own websites. Of course, we were super motivated, and we were filming and taking pictures constantly, just because it was fun. I already realized then that my shots were consistently very good and when I tore my ACL, everything fell into place. I totally fell in love with photography and bought my first SLR camera. That was back in analog times…
I then decided to study design and photography was a part of that, but to be honest, it was only the fundamentals back then. I pretty much did my own thing then, learned from the web and took many, many pictures.
Look through his posts on Instagram and you will always find some of Roman’s favorite quotes that reflect his view on photography and life in general.
The world is a book and those who do not travel read only a page.
I get the feeling you are in love with the mountains, is that right?
Yes, definitely. I mean, everybody who has spent some time in the mountains knows what I am talking about, they have this power over you, they make you come back. It’s hard to describe; you could compare it to surfing. You only know you want to come back to it, do it again, and there are always new projects and adventures you want to experience. You want to see something new and learn more. To be able to do that on the most beautiful places on earth is a privilege nobody should take for granted. I am always grateful for the opportunities I have!
When did you start blogging and how has it changed your life?
I created my first blog at the beginning of 2009. It’s still online and was a mix between my own work and cool stuff I found on the internet. Over the years, I lacked time to maintain the blog, and in 2013 I decided to close it. I always knew that blogs have great potential, but I never managed to really put my mind to it and start a new one.
In October 2016, my girlfriend Helena and I decided to launch our blog www.thetastyoutdoors.com. Of course, we decided right after to travel for eight months in a row, which makes it extremely hard to maintain a blog, especially if you look at the way we like to travel. In Nepal, for example, in the mountains, you don’t have internet, let alone electricity. The same goes for crossing Vietnam with a motorcycle. As we have very high-quality standards for ourselves, the updates might take a bit longer, but it’s all worth it. Now we’re back in Austria and extremely motivated to catch up. What has changed for us in the meantime? It feels like not much yet, because we’re still new at this, but there are some promising opportunities on the horizon. I strongly believe that content is still king and that if you publish quality work, people recognize that and pay attention to you.
Which of your pictures is the one you are the proudest of? Does it have a story?
My picture of the Ama Dablam in Nepal. The Ama Dablam is one of the most beautiful mountains I know. On the day I took the picture, both Helena and I were already super exhausted. The day before we had “slept” 5000 meters high in our base camp und got up at one in the morning to climb our first 6000er. Everything went well, even though Helena almost froze to an ice cube – but all that is forgotten the moment the sun comes out and you are on top of the mountain. That’s only halfway though, and after we had climbed down to the base camp and the next lodge, we were pretty done for the day. When we were finally inside, I saw the clouds outside and couldn’t sit still. I took my camera, went back outside, and actually went back part of the way to get the right position for the perfect shot. Doing that 4600 meters above altitude was exhausting, but I am glad I did it because the pictures of this remarkable trip are among my favorites.
*numbers current at the time of writing
Copyright: All images are copyright protected and are property of Roman Königshofer.