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December 24, 2017 10:00 PM

Behind The Lens

Sioux Falls

There's no shortage of photographers in the city of Sioux Falls. It's an art that even amateurs are picking up on. So what's in store for the future of this trade? 

Once he's envisioned the perfect shot, it's just about finding the perfect place to capture it. 

"The very beginning phase of my career people definitely gave me a bit of flack for pursuing art versus a standard career and obviously many years later I'm very fulfilled in what I do," said Christopher Reistroffer. 

Here... he's capturing the Crane Center from the rooftop of 8th and Railroad. Yesterday it was head shots. Last weekend a wedding. 

"13 years later, I've had the opportunity to work with many incredible families business persons and large organizations around the world," Reistroffer said. 

Reistroffer is the owner of Reistroffer Design. He's just one photographer who runs his own business in Sioux Falls. 

He's studied in Miami, Paris and even Berlin. 

"I get a lot of people that ask me why do you chose to run your business in South Dakota? Why do you chose to be an artist in South Dakota? You know I could be in New York, or I can be in California, or I can be in Florida, or Europe, I mean I could be anywhere. And I tell them Sioux Falls is an amazing breeding ground for artists," said Reistroffer. 

While he's spent the past 13 years learning the trade, he admits it's becoming accessible to pretty much anybody. 

"When you think at how advanced cell phones are nowadays truly anyone can be a photographer and frankly everyone should be a photographer. I mean moments are worth documenting," Reistroffer said. 

But fellow photographer Walter Portz isn't sold on that idea. 

"If somebody came to me and said I want to be a photographer, I'd be like that's cool. There's a long line of you, we're in a long line together, there's a lot of us out here, no shortage of photographers by any means," said Portz. 

He says the scene won't flourish until the public starts purchasing artwork for their homes and businesses, rather than just heading to big box stores. 

"We're not yet there putting our money where our mouth is kind of and investing in artists on a personal level," Portz said. 

Portz launched his business as one of the first digital photographers in Sioux Falls and now owns Studio Blu at 8th and Railroad. 

"We started photographing weddings and kind of doing it as a second job. And then just grew it into a bigger business over the years," said Portz. 

Portz agrees with Reistroffer that anyone can be a photographer, but how you think about photography will separate you from the rest. 

"And the accessibility of learning how to use a camera, with YouTube and all of that stuff, has blown the doors wide open. Anybody can take great photos, anybody can take a photograph and process it whether it's photo shop, or Instagram or whatever and make amazing stuff. The only thing now left to distinguish is the idea. What kind of ideas and conceptually how do you think about photography and that's where you're going to get people that continue to move forward," Portz said. 

While anyone can have a camera, everyone has a different view through their own lense. 

"It's just how do you want to tell your own story, how do you want to visualize something, how do you bring your creative eye to the table, and that's where I think the more artists there are in the community the better because everyone is going to tell the story that much differently than the next," said Reistroffer. 

© 2017 KELOLAND TV. All Rights Reserved.

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