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Phlogger aka Andrew Walmsley

A website dedicated to photography showcasing articles, interviews, reviews and Photography Insights podcast.

Interview with National Geographic photographer Max Aguilera Hellweg

Welcome to episode 90!

I was reading a copy of the tech/science mag WIRED recently and was intrigued by some of the photography inside, especially one particular article.  Something then suddenly flashed why don’t I reach out to the photographer, as they are always credited in magazines like this.  The thing was, the article was based around forensic photography and not something I had seen much of.

So a few friendly emails later and we had managed to arrange a last-minute session together.  I’m pleased to introduce you to Max Aguilera Hellweg, who is a not only a photographer for National Geographic but a trained doctor too.

Working for National Geographic he has had some very interesting assignments that have taken him around the world and interesting circumstances!  Max started life in film and darkrooms but was forced to shoot digitally due to changes in the industry. He talks to us about his life and is very passionate about this, so watch out for the odd swear word.

A few topics we discuss are:

  • working with criminals + police
  • the West Bank
  • Journalism & privacy laws
  • Russian particle accelerators
  • Cancun, pyramids and jail
    • shooting at “the body farm”
    • Robots & human fears
    • Queen & Bohemian Rhapsody
    • Forensic photography
    • Peruvian presidents
    • Medicine
    • Darkrooms and digital
    • COVID assignment + when not to shoot

Although we had a 2-hour conversation, I’ve managed to cut some elements down to 1 hour, its not easy putting someone’s career down into this amount of time.


“There is always a story, it doesn’t matter when you arrive, stay open, be patient”


Max recommends you visit his website to look at his work, but i’ve put a link to his book here too.  It’s work he did photographing what’s inside us humans, graphic but beautiful.

National Georgraphic –

Website –

Book –