meet PAPER MODE photographer Alina zum Hebel

Get to know one of London’s up-and-coming creatives Alina zum Hebel. Alina has been our #1 go-to photographer. This extremely talented creative has helped us realise our vision through her camera lens, ever since our first collection ‘Lick the Future’. Her love to photograph people (including her friends!) are also filled with their culture in the context of the city that the person lives in. Here are 10 questions, to get to know Alina better.

Can you tell us more about your journey to discovering photography? When and where does it start?


It actually started with my 5th birthday when my parents gave me a sparkling red 35 mm camera - a Candy M-BF by Braun. When I grew up I liked to use it to take pictures of friends and I got obsessed with building this archive of memories.



You used a lot of 35mm film, have you ever experimented with other types of photography? What is your second best favourite, other than film?


I also use medium format cameras with a 120mm film - probably my second favourite choice. I recently picked up an old camcorder that works with tapes which will be my next project.



You’ve taken some campaign shots during your time working with Adidas. Can you reveal some secrets or life lessons (if any) from your time working in a big corporation?


I was very fortunate to travel a lot and live in different places like Portland, Oregon or New York City. I guess at the end of the day connecting with people has been the most rewarding experience. I have met incredible people and made lifelong friends. Being in such a supportive environment has actually helped me to do photography on a professional level and grow into my current creative work.




How do you feel about attending your courses online so far? Are you expecting some face-to-face sessions from the university anytime soon?


It was definitely an interesting experience. I’ve been back now for a few months and it’s lovely to meet people in person. I’ve really enjoyed being able to access the creative facilities, obviously my particular favourite has been spending time in the dark room and studios.


Can you tell us something that people would be surprised to know about you? Other than how you hate people butchering your name? 


I’m actually very amused when people struggle with my name. Maybe more of a fun fact, I have double jointed arms.



What are you looking forward to the most after the pandemic ends (hopefully soon!)?


In a way so many things feel very exciting this year as we get to revisit a lot of experiences. I’m really looking forward to summer nights out and generally being more spontaneous.


What is your most favourite Sunday dinner?


Whatever my housemate Molly makes.


here is Molly! 


Do you have any life soundtrack? Like when a sad song comes in and you pretend that you’re in a music video, kind of song.


Post lockdown I’m channelling summery soundtracks, and at the moment I’m really into Peggy Gou’s new track Nabi. If it has to be an all-time favourite it will probably be Frankie Knuckles Remix of ‘Blind’ by Hercules Love Affair or ‘Operator’ (DJ Koze’s extended disco version).


What’s your hobby outside of the creative field?


Maybe I’m a bit obsessive but photography is something I do ‘outside office hours’. Generally speaking I love traveling or simply reading a book.



Do you have anything exciting planned for this year that you look forward to?


I would love to tell you about an upcoming trip to Japan but this will probably have to wait. I would already be very happy to enjoy post lockdown summer in London and see family and friends in Germany.



Alina zum Hebel (she/her) is a multidisciplinary creative and art director. Born and raised in Germany, she currently resides in London. Driven by a spirit of curiosity about the post-digital age, her work explores the intersection of technology, humanity and culture. She aims to create a subversive means of cultural awareness and reflection of our rapidly changing world. Utilising a broad range of digital and physical media such as photography, print and sculpture, she investigates mainstream beliefs and consciousness.

Having worked in various brand communications and marketing roles for adidas Originals & Style Collaborations in the HQ Germany, Portland and New York, Alina brings strong expertise in building tasteful creatives and strategies. She also worked as photographer within her previous role and currently engages with external clients such as Pacemaker Products or where’s the frame.

Portraits taken by Alina zum Hebel (website/ instagram). Photography courtesy of where’s the frame? and Alina zum Hebel.