– How and when did you become interested in photography?
I started as most of the people these days with digital cameras (my computer engineering thesis on imaging algorithms helped here!) and experienced the usual DSLR buying acquisition until I discovered film and medium format. Today I still use both media but I’ve been slowly (but constanlty) been collecting street portraits of strangers with my Hasselblad 6×6 or Pentax 6×7 cameras.
– Is there any artist/photographer who inspired your art?
There are of course several great photographers that I admire but I don’t know if they really inspired me. I wish I was able to make portraits like Avedon, Corbjin, Penn, Sander or Steichen, or capture great moments like Burri, Cartier-Bresson, Erwitt, but those are more endless artists than simple photographers.
– Why do you work in black and white rather than colour?
Color is difficult, way more difficult, and adds so many dimensions to a picture that almost draws the attention away from the face photographed. I prefer BW for its raw, simple ability to convey a simple message.
– How much preparation do you put into taking a photograph/series of photographs?
I rarely arrange portrait sessions, I prefer to choose the right film that goes well with the light conditions, load the camera (almost exclusively an Hasselblad 501CM with both the 80mm and 150mm and an extension ring), and go out. Whenever I find a nice interesting face (could be a beautiful girl, an old man or some crazy character) I ask him/her to take a picture and I shoot one or two frames (no more than that). Then I thank them and I go.
– Where is your photography going? What projects would you like to accomplish?
I would like to build a nice series of squared BW portraits, mostly of Sicilians. My photography is definitely going towards a more classic, timeless style and I would like people to appreciate the beauty of simple faces that are around us and that so many times we fail to see.