Today I’m following the path of hurricane Irma. It’s a category 4 hurricane, a very bad beast, and she is moving toward Florida and is supposed to arrive over the Tampa Bay area. I lived a year in Clearwater Beach, I been there many times for short periods and I love the place and the people. That for me is home and I consider it my spiritual homeland. In the previous weeks there was Harvey, another hurricane hitting Texas pretty badly. I been to Houston and for me was impressive to see the images of the floods on streets where I drove and places I know. It was very bad and it made victims. Today I see the news in Italy, bad weather in Tuscany, mostly on Livorno. Six people dead. The problem was simple, 10 inches of rain in few hours during the night. I look at the pictures and are similar to the damages caused by a category 4 hurricane in the USA that brought down 50 inches of rain! I look at the USA and I see people prepared to fight the adversities, included natural disasters at the level of a […]
identity crisis noun Psychiatry noun: identity crisis; plural noun: identity crises a period of uncertainty and confusion in which a person’s sense of identity becomes insecure, typically due to a change in their expected aims or role in society. I had been a member of the PPA, Professional Photographers of America, since 2000. I think PPA is a great association with a lot of benefit and educational resources for the members. Every year the PPA organizes the International Photo Contest. Sending the images, seeing them judged live online and looking at the others is a great way to improve. I sent images in the years, as is normal, some got merits, some got in the prestigious Loan Collection and some was not even considered. I always found a nice challenge to have my vision, more European, compared with the typical American vision of the judges. It’s a nice way to get out of the comfort zone. I always suggest to European to confront with the USA vision and vice versa. In the last couple of years I noticed a trend in the IPC that I do not like and this year, with the Grand Imaging Award Finalists, I was […]
Today on FaceBook a friend of mine posted an article criticizing an artistic performance of Milo Moire`, the performance in question is “The mirror box” and you can see it here and read a description. My first impact was to not consider the performance as something positive, but then I started to read the comments, all similar, just to quote some of them “What happened to this world? Seriously.” “What? She needs psychological help” “A singularly perverted narcissist and exhibitionist. Gets her thrills this way. Proves no point!” “She likes it?” “A true media whore. People are morons…those people touching her are pigs.” “Mediawhore” and so on… you can imagine how it went on. So I used Google to fine Milo Moire` page and read the explication of her performances and watched the others. After the comments and after seeing the other performances I have to say I really like her and she made a perfect point. Particularly I liked the Protest over the Cologne attack. In a culture where the answer of Cologne Mayor was to suggest the women to cover themselves I though that this performance was perfect. I’m a photographer, mostly a commercial photographer, but […]
I was reading on Swissinfo.ch, the article The breathtaking photos that showed Switzerland to the world by Marguerite Meyer (Writer), Ester Unterfinger (Photo editor) I was impressed by this picture: The picture in itself is just a good documentary photograph but what I noticed is the dynamic range (or latitude of exposure as we called it before we were trendy…). We can easily see details in the dark areas inside the gallery and we can see the details in the panorama toward the arches. Some burning was made in the darkroom and the effect is visible, but all the details were in the original plate. This was for sure a large format plate made before the industrialization by Kodak, so there was no need to save on the quantity of silver in the emulsion. You can see the same latitude of exposure in almost all the old professional pictures well exposed and developed. If you are in Italy there are some good places to watch the impressive quality and dynamic range of old films the Alinari Archive is one of the best and has a lot of publications. The rule in film was to expose for the shadows […]
Today I found online a short movie that I really loved. “The boy with a camera for a face” directed by Spencer Brown. This 15 minutes short movie tells perfectly the problem of watching vs living. I consider this a must for every person in the image business. Enjoy it!
Today I read an article on PetaPixel abut the camera market compared to the smartphone market. You can find the original article here. From the article I took a graphic that was created by the photographer Sven Skafisk (I wanted to go to the source and link him, but I have not found a link in the article or his page on Google) who spent the time to put on a graphic the data of the camera production from 1933 to today, divided by typology and including the smartphone camera market. The article is very interesting and points the difference in scale between the camera and phone market. It’s worth to read. But what really impressed me about this graph is the comparison of the camera numbers before and after the digital revolution. How this can mean good news for professionals photogrpahers? We can see that after the end of the film era in 2005, anybody wanted to become a photographer and the sales of digital equipment (from compact to serious cameras) really increased exponentially. In those years we have seen crowds of people getting one good picture with a digital camera that decided to buy a D-SLR and become […]
Or… How to have some photographic fun without technology. Digital photography created a wonderful new world of opportunities but it also changed the way we photograph, instilling in us a lot of bad habits. One of the worse effect of digital photography is to make us shot too much and post process even more. It’s kind of strange, but also with a strong film background, when we use digital we forget to have a slow approach to our subjects. Sometime to remember what make me take great pictures I have to immerse myself for a day in some sort of cathartic experience that will force me to the basics of photography and forget the digital world and the infinite possibilities to post process my images. Those cathartic experiences are not intended to take great pictures, but simply to clear my mind and have some fun far from a computer. The most basic way to photograph is with a pinhole camera. I suggest to every beginner to try the pinhole to understand deeply the basic concepts of photography, I even created a full chapter about it in my book “Photography: The f Manual”. The simple idea is to […]
Su La Guida di oggi, giovedi` 12 gennaio 2017, e` apparsa una breve ed ottima recensione del mio libro “Pensieri Fotografici. Meditazioni politicamente scorrette di un fotografo in sciopero”. Il libro puo` essere acquistato su Amazon Buona lettura!
Every year, since 1995 for Christmas I created a card to send my best wishes to friends and clients. I always went in to the effort with the idea to create a real Christmas card and not a commercial work and I think I succeeded most of the time. Here my cards from 1995 to 2016 with the explanation of what I did, how and why. Obviously my wishes for this year are at the bottom of the post… so if you want a nice year… read it all!!! 😉 1995 This was my first year as professional. I opened my studio in July 1994 and I started to really work and promote myself in 1995. I always had a passion for reconstructing ambiences and mood so also for Christmas I went in that direction and realized a model of a mountain lodge. It was all made in 4″x5″ film with a Cambo Master Plus. I printed the picture to attach to the card in 4″x5″ and you can see here under the black shade the original image and, clear, the crop I used. The reason to realize a larger image and then crop was to have more depth […]
It’s Christmas, time to buy gifts and nobody deserve gifts more than photographers! So here my personal list of the 10 best gifts, from $0 to a lot of money. A free gift that you can give to your photographer friends is to give them time: your time as subject, patient partner to explore the world with them or simply time to review their pictures and be honest. Honesty is the key for the gift, tell them if their 5000 pictures of a yellow lemon are boring or exciting, tell them why you like or dislike an image and tell them why. For few dollars you can handcraft a visualizer. Years ago, in the film era, it was a very common tool, specially for view cameras, and was ready to buy in the shops. Now is not possible to buy it but very easy to build. Take a piece of black cardboard, cut a hole the size of the sensor in it and attach, close to the hole, a piece of measuring tape in millimeters. The visualizer can be used to evaluate the scene looking thru the hole and the distance between it and the eye will correspond to the […]