True Colours

For how long can we postpone the inevitability of autumn - and do we really want that?

The physical leaves, the metaphysical leaves.

Let’s see what it is and nothing else:

us balancing between the seasons and reasons, and for once, not being afraid to fall.

Fall then fly, you say - now that is an idea: defy gravity and everything you’ve learnt; we’re in front of this white, clean, shiny canvass, we’re inventing the colours we’ll bury our soul into. No shame, and no express checkout.

As if these minutes are made of elastic, we pull them in and out, and burn the margins of time, painting our faces with its ash, like warriors.

I hold a camera but you held my hand.

I lift the sky to find the sun - but you are not afraid to look at it.

You show me those true colours that form when summer and autumn hold us still, in a painful, invisible embrace.

_____________________

Model: Chris Canuel - Media City, UK


Fae and Dan Wedding Day @Oak Royal, Chorley

**I have always liked to say that I have not been lucky with many things in life apart from one: and that is meeting lovely people, again and again, from whom I learnt things, with whom I shared things, people who make life more colourful and joyous.

And that is no exception when it comes about my job.

I have the feeling my clients are special (well, they are my clients, so they should be!) in the sense that they make my job easier by adopting an all natural air around my camera, thus allowing me to capture their events and moments as I like it the most: candidly and unobtrusively.

I fought a stomach bug the days and night before but luckily woke up all fresh on the wedding day. A lovely August day. The sun was shinning bright (a bit too bright for some of the photos!) and everything ran smoothly.

Fae warned me that Dan didn’t like posing - and that we should respect that; we took a few posed shots (Fae was stunning, as the photos show!) and although I would have wanted to take more photos of them, I focused on recording the atmosphere of the day, the funny moments, the emotions, the lovely kids and the smiling guests, deciding on giving them a break, and tried a couple of more shots later, when the sun wasn’t that bright, and they were more relaxed.

I am glad my clients are happy with the results and that I witnessed their big day and met so many lovely people and happy kids! :)

Here are a few photos:

Ricoh GRIII: In Love

There are many things I have been shooting recently - exciting projects and encounters, some challenging, some filling my heart with the joy of doing what I love the most. I am grateful to all the people who pay me to do this job and to all my friends who listen to me rambling for hours about photography, especially when things don’t go quite as I would want to.

But nothing compares to the excitement of shooting street again. Street photography is my first love, and it is a pity I have been neglecting it for a long while. I have still taken street shots with my phone but not consciously, not with an idea in mind - just as I was moving from one location to the other. A selection of my mobile phone street photography is here: Our Streets

Armed with a new small and compact camera (Ricoh GRIII) that I still learn how to use as it is such a different experience from my heavy D5, I did a test street photo session yesterday, and let me tell you: summer has never looked so good!

Can’t wait to share more and start working seriously on street photo projects!

Feel free to follow me on Instagram at VoidIsTheNewBlack for more!

Food Photography @UberEats

**I don’t seem to post too much of my food photography - although it is quite an important part of my work at the moment. I think that is because I haven’t ever considered myself a food photographer per se - but rather becoming one while trying to adapt to the demands of the market. It has probably been one of the most uncomfortable “Yes” I said in terms of photography - just to challenge myself and to see if I am able to do it. I feel I am still learning with every new session. Every setting, every restaurant table, every plate is different - and that requires of me to think quickly, be creative and organised, adaptable, flexible and understand the work flow in a restaurant kitchen.

The best part is always meeting people as passionate about food as I am passionate about photography. Don’t get me wrong: I love food, too - but probably I love for it to look great more than anything else! I feel that food cooked with attention and love deserves respect and, thus, a great photo.

There are strict guidelines that I have to follow - so there is limited room for creativity. I try to be quick and ‘functional’ - although, when I can, I spend more time than normal with the shoot, simply because the setting or the food inspires me to do so.

I enjoy colourful food, with loads of green and red in it, on simple or textured backgrounds, with natural light, if possible. I like to keep things simple and clean, although, at times, you can see me adding napkins and cutlery, then taking them out of the frame, only to add them again at a different angle, so experimenting, too, if there is time for that. I am grateful that chefs, kitchen and restaurant staff as well as business managers are always patient and enthusiastic, and I enjoy talking to them, finding a bit about their business, their views and ethos, things that I try to reflect in the photos, as much as I can. **Food looks much better with natural, filtered light but I use artificial lighting, too, because there are dishes that really deserve to ‘shine’, and sometimes the light from a window can’t provide that.

Being hired again for freelance work for the same business, either for their website updates, social media or promotions, is always nice as it confirms the clients were happy with the results and they trust me for the visuals of their new food project or advertising.

Here are some examples of my most recent work:

Thai Cuisine Express - Liverpool

JS Restaurant, Salt Beef Burger - Manchester

JS Restaurant, Salt Beef Burger - Manchester

Porky Pig - Manchester

Porky Pig - Manchester

Jarern Street Food - Bolton

Jarern Street Food - Bolton

Cube Desserts - Bolton

Cube Desserts - Bolton

Waffle Island, Manchester

Waffle Island, Manchester

Cafe at the End of the Universe - Warrington

Cafe at the End of the Universe - Warrington

Munch Express - Manchester

Munch Express - Manchester

Brothers - St Helens

Brothers - St Helens

Lemon and Lime Cocktail, Dessert Corner - Bolton

Lemon and Lime Cocktail, Dessert Corner - Bolton

The Assembly - Manchester

The Assembly - Manchester







Yoga Flow with Emma @Alexandra Park, Manchester

It is not the first time I shoot with Emma, an incredibly positive and vibrant yoga teacher from Manchester.

First time we met we tried a mixture of indoor and outdoor shots for her website - and I was amazed how easily it was to work with her!

Her classes incorporate a focus on mind and body and she named her brand V-Flow because her favourite style of yoga class is Vinyasa Flow; she also teaches Hatha and personalised private classes, and has some brilliant retreat plans for next summer.

Alexandra Park was sunny and warm; I arrived before her, and ‘scouted’ the area for best places to shoot.

I knew Emma would want something simple but a bit ‘special’ - and I found these really dramatic-looking trees that I immediately ‘projected’ her on, at least in my mind!

Despite not always being the safest of ventures, Emma embarked on this, and embraced my ideas with her contagious enthusiasm and openness. She found ways to balance on different tree trunks, to change poses and to fight the sun when we were in the open.

During the shoot, she told me she had planned to be more in touch in nature this year - and, hopefully, these photos shows how much she actually is - and how much she enjoys it!

The Fire Within Festival @Wigan Galleries

Incredible atmosphere at the launch of The Fire Within, Wigan Borough’s new cultural manifesto, an inspirational five year plan, written by the people for the people. The Festival seeks to engage, challenge and galvanise young people to take centre stage and show us new ways of seeing the world, creating new cultural experiences. Conceived and curated by Wigan based international artists, Al and AL, the entire first floor of The Galleries has been transformed for the Festival, inviting everyone to a series of performances, dance, poetry, as well as art, music and film exhibitions. Delighted to have my photo of Mary Griffiths and her team exhibited as part of this stunning event and exhibition!

Barbara Nicholls @Turnpike

**I am very honoured for having the opportunity to talk to artist Barbara Nicholls who is artist in residence at The Turnpike Gallery, and to photograph her at work. Following a 2-year investigation into the sunken mines, incendiary geology and lost heritage of the region, Barbara Nicholls’ monumental watercolours will be on display at The Turnpike from 11th of May until the 22nd of June. Barbara explained to me how these works emerge through the manipulation of pigment in water and seeing all that happening, right before my lens, was an incredible experience. Cannot wait to see the exhibition preview on Friday, May 10th, (7-9)! If you’re around, make sure you don’t miss this!

Manchester Anime and Gaming Con, April 2019

**Incredible atmosphere and buzzing weekend at Manchester Anime and Gaming Con: it was my first time attending and taking photos, I enjoyed it and can’t wait to visit again. I particularly appreciated the freedom of expression through music, dance, cosplay, etc. - and the friendly chats with many of the people attending who were eager to have their photos taken and pose for me. Thank you! Although I enjoyed listening to the talk on ‘Mental Health in Cosplay’, a real eye-opener and catalyst for an open discussion on anxiety, depression, and other mental issues that youngsters have to deal with. This is how I found out that the participants find their strength in the characters they love - they feel inspired by them, and in emulating them through the costumes, they feel protected, they feel so much better, and closer to themselves.