Published Jul 12. 2014

Fishy photos: Lukas Bammatter

Swiss photographer and fly-fisher Lukas Bammatter lives in Zürich not far away from beautiful trout and grayling waters with both fishing and photo opportunities

Lukas with chrome! -
A large rainbow -
On the mouse-popper -
Lukas with a nice Dolly Varden -
The fish

I got in contact with Swiss Lukas Bammater through his fellow countryman and colleague Daniel Luther, who contributed an article. Lukas dropped me a mail saying "I would be happy to share some of my fishing pictures and experiences with other GFF-readers too".

He continued: "I'm 32 years old and a passionate flyfisher since I was little. I studied fish biology and made my master work about the behavior of lake dwelling brown trout that spawn in small creeks. In the last four years I worked as chief-editor for the Swiss fishing magazine Petri-Heil together with Daniel. The work as a fishing editor sparked my interest in (fishing) photography. In the last four years I've spent a lot of time to improve my photography skills. I love to travel, see different places and fish for new species."

He was an obvious contender for our series of fishy photographers, and I sent him my list of questions and he replied like this:

a) How did you start photographing - and what made you choose fishing related photos in particular?

Initially, when I started to work for fishing magazines, photographing was just something I had to do. Since I am very ambitious it didn't take long before I was no longer satisfied with the quality of my photos. With each job I realized how much fun it is to work with the camera and photographing became a passion.
Fly fishing and photographing have a lot in common for me. It is all about being at the right place at the right time. And sometimes, you need a bit of luck to succeed.
Today I often switch from rod to camera when there is a nice photo subject. I love the reward of good pictures after a day at the water. In fact, that feels even better than a big catch…

Edelweiss – rare beauty -
Long cast on a mountain lake -
A brown trout from a glacial stream -
Reflections -
Mountain reflections -
Alpine impressions
Book cover - Das grosse Trockenfliegenbuch
The book

b) Do you have a particular subject, region or a style of pictures that you mainly shoot or are you more all-round?

I think I am still on my way to find my own style and preferences. I always try new techniques and styles, but sometimes I need to pay more effort to break boundaries and try totally unconventional things.

c) Where are your photos used? Books, magazines, brochures, ads, web sites, prints, gallery exhibits or other places?

My photos were published in different fishing magazines and were used for commercial campaigns. From time to time I also have some photo-jobs that have nothing to do with fishing. I have already executed portraiture, architectural photography and reportage. My most recent work is a book about dry fly fishing (Das grosse Trockenfliegenbuch, North Guiding Verlag). The book is illustrated with many of my pictures.

d) Is photography your main source of income - if at all a source of income - and do you do other jobs as a supplement?

I wished it would be, but I am happy that I can earn at least some of my income with photography. I also work as writer, offer fly fishing courses and guided fishing trips. In addition I am employed as a scientific assistant at the national fisheries department.

Magazine spread -
Magazine cover -
Magazine cover -
Magazine spread -
Magazine cover -
Magazine work

e) Can people buy your pictures and if so, then in which form and where?

Yes, they can. I sell my images for commercial purposes, but also if someone wants to use a subject privately.

f) Where do you currently live and work?

I live in Switzerland, in the beautiful city of Zurich. The little big city offers every thing you need but is not far away from beautiful trout and grayling waters.

Underwater -
Spawning trout in clear water -
A rise -
Sunshine cast -
In the light -
On the way to the water -
The bear in the flowers -
Big char -
Kamtchatka autumn colors -
Stonefly -
Setting the hook -
Lots of subject variation


Contact Lukas through email on
You'll find more of his pictures on

g) What's in your bag? Preferred cameras, bodies, lenses and other gear?

Most of the time I'm shooting with the Canon 5D Mark III. My latest acquisition is a high quality macro lens (Canon EF 100mm, f/2.8L IS USM). I have mainly used it for gear pictures but I can't wait to use it at the water.
The equipment that I usually carry in my Lowepro Dryzone Rover backpack is:
- Canon EF 24-105mm, f/4 L IS USM
- Canon EF 70-300mm, f/4-5.6L IS USM
- Canon EF 16-35mm, f/2.8L II USM
- different Polarizing filters
- different Neutral Density filters
- extra batteries
- extra memory cards
From time to time I use the Ewa-Marine U-B100 underwater bag, different reflectors and a Manfrotto tripod.

Sunrise walk -
Fish on -
Delightful evening mood -
Crystal clean mountain morning -
Fishing waters
Releasing -
Steelhead -
Marble trout monster hunting rainbow trout -
The final phase -
Portrait of a rainbow trout -
Swimming away -
One day this will be a big fish -
Spawning sockeye salmon -
Fly-tying materials -
The imitation and the natural -
The Perfect and the flies -
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