Peter Geller was born in 1945 in Hamburg, Germany. As a teenager, while going to boarding school, he earned pocket money taking portraits of young girls. He developed the negatives himself. Since he had no strobe lighting he came up with the idea of using mirrors to reflect the light onto his models.
After high school, he began studying law. It was his dream to become a famous lawyer. He continued to use his photography talents to earn a bit of extra money. His first part-time job was as press photographer for the Hamburger ABENDBLATT (Hamburg Evening Paper) and the STERN magazine. Not surprisingly he discovered that his press photos were very good, meaning that he earned more than his fulltime colleagues.
Peter Geller's big break came when he was assigned to cover the breaking story of a bank robbery in the south of Germany (500 miles away from his hometown Hamburg). The shots he took where published in all the major magazines around the world. In 1971, for those amazing shots, Peter received the greatest award in press photography available, the WORLD PRESS PHOTO AWARD. This was also the launch of Peter Geller’s new career.
From that moment on, from his photo studio in Hamburg, Germany, Peter worked for all the major magazines and advertising agencies. Among his clients were, to name just a few, KODAK, AGFA, ZEISS, BAYER and POLAROID. Throughout those many years he also shot 10.000 covers for Harlequin Romances. The following 15 years he spent bounding around the globe for his clients and sleeping at least two out of three nights in hotel beds.
A shooting for AGFA sent Peter to Los Angeles. With three AFGA clients from Germany, three models from Paris and a crew of four from Hamburg he found himself smack-dab in the middle of a freak California storm. When the clouds went away, it left beautiful brilliant sunshine but also gale force winds on the beach where they needed to shoot. The weather conditions forced them to improvise since all of his portable reflectors were too wobbly in the wind and the shiny boards from the movie industry were too heavy. Hiring and extra crew just to move and hold the reflectors seemed excessive to Geller. As a result, during their downtime in the hotel room, the first SUNBOUNCE prototype, which just managed to rescue the shooting, was created.
Inspired by success, Peter Geller developed using his prototype the famous CALIFORNIA SUNBOUNCE (named after its birthplace) SUN-BOUNCE PRO reflector that he patented worldwide.