WORLD: MY PORTFOLIO - Matthias Zentner

Matthias Zentner worked as a freelance travel journalist and photographer before film-making, but he swapped life on the road to train as a broadcast editor and graphic designer.

Rising through the ranks at Kabel 1, a German cable TV channel, Zentner became the head of promotions and design, but left to launch his own broadcast design agency, Velvet Mediendesign.

Zentner has won international agency recognition through a varied and inventive reel. His latest ad, "bed" for Cadbury's Flake through Publicis London, is scheduled to hit the UK next week.

"Being able to indulge in capturing bad taste was one of the best things about shooting 'bed'," he says. "Gone are soft-focus camera angles in a perfect environment. Instead, we shot in an unglamorous furniture warehouse.

"My background in photography and graphics helps me to organise frames and manipulate images. In 'bed', I played with the graphics to create an almost distasteful setting to contrast the delicious, orgasmic chocolate bar. I built green wall backgrounds and added harsh yellow lights that clashed horribly with the cast's outfits.

"Total creative freedom was one of the best things about making 'horoscopes', the campaign for 13th Street, a new TV platform for Universal Studios.

The only outline was to incorporate the words of each star sign. We filmed in Budapest and unearthed some weird locations. For one shot, I discovered a school of pantomime, where we filmed the artists at work. Every kind of texture, including the make-up, was composed on computer before filming.

"Hyundai's 'missing you' was one of my most challenging shoots. The brief was to show lost places and it was impossible to find locations that were empty, but still had traces of human presence. My personal favourite has to be Toyota 'enhanced' for its sheer ease and elegance and I'm proud of the fact that we get the message across without ever showing the car.

"I love shooting in eastern Europe because production staff are so flexible, unlike in the UK where crews are so well unionised it's hard to catch them off their tea-break."

- Matthias Zentner was talking to Rachel Nouchi.

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