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Portrait Raffaele Celentano.jpg

About Photography

       Photography is a analytical disipline, unlike painting which is synthetic. Some people naturally have an analytical imagination, others a synthetic, and some not at all. I am analytical. If someone gives me a blank piece of paper and asks me to draw something,

I panic. I have no idea what I should make. But if they bring me anywhere in the world,

I can see everything there visually, and duplicate it. I would say instinctivly.

      Photography is an creative process that embraces many things. I like to work without
a time limit, unobserved and undisturbed, without phone calls or other interruptions. When
I go somewhere to photograph, I never know whether I will will be there five minutes or five
days. My inspiration comes from the light, the atmosphere and from my reaction to that
moment. To be creative often means following a path with very limited chance, with only
partial ideas and sometimes to work to a dead end.

      For me is the entire process in the creation of a photo a source of joy. I love to be
out at odd times of the day or night experiencing fascinating places, even if I do not have
my camera there to photograph them. I love to photograph when I travel and everything
that goes with it. To develop the film and see the first contact sheets. It is always so
exciting to edit my images, create test prints and to achieve the challenge of the final
prints . It is crucial to me that I make the prints of my images myself. The darkroom brings
immeasurable creative potential. It could be that someone else has better technical
aspects then mine in printing, but this would not be my interpretation. I find the work in the
darkroom fascinating and inspiring. It influences and enriches the way I see and also my
way of photographing.

      Later after having published work will you experience the reactions of other people. Photography is a great challenge, that brings with it a lot of work, but it is something that makes me to belong to this world.


      It pleases me that I am able to capture a scene, a moment of reality. But because of editing programs like Photoshop, images are constantly being changed. One can not distinguish the difference between what is real or false.  Analog photography is mainly

about capturing reality.


      I could say it is the main reason why I became a photographer. That is why I attempt

to photograph with film as often as I can. I cannot completely avoid to use a digital camera,

but I am not a graphic designer. I use in Photoshop only the tools i would use in my dark room. Many digital photographer that have no notion about analog photography and the

dark room process,  use post production programs like Photoshop so extremely, that I

would describe their photographs as illustrations, . In this kind of work, it is clear that the post processing is more important then the photograph itself. I also have a digital camera.

      I am very lucky to have worked for magazines, the companies acting almost like
scholarships for my work. Today, this is much different and more difficult while the interest
lies not in the quality and creativity of the work, but in the profit made. The control of
advertising on magazines is increasing steadily. Editors no longer assign the same orders
as before, and if so, for cost reasons, they ask only for digital work. The market for serious
photography has therefore become worse.

      Today photography is used in magazines very rarely, and only to depict the truth.
Somewhat like decoration. The future of documentary photography does not look good. I

guess I am very lucky to be able to have some of my work published before photography
goes downhill.

      For me, everything revolves around the individual picture. I choose subjects that move me visually and emotionally. Every now and then I give my photos titles that may be helpful to the artwork. The words are not critical but rather visual. A picture must speak for itself.

When it requires an explanation, it is not a strong enough image.

      When someone makes great pictures, it is labelled art, as there is nothing to debate.

But photo galleries are manipulative as the influence the market. If you are working specifically as an artist, then you can not think like a photographer. The photographic work should be outstanding. That is all that matters. When someone wants to have a photo of mine to hang in their home, I am thrilled. In the end, the customers that purchase my photographs, are those that allow me to create more personal work.

      I grew up in Southern Italy in a Catholic working class family. In my family there was
no artistic traditions. I noticed this very young and found that I was able to see things
differently as most. What I saw then in images, I only was able to find in photography
much later in life. With photography I was able to express myself artistically and at the
same time, challenge my livelihood. I have never regretted choosing this profession,
because since then I have been able to live doing something that I love.

      My work is mainly inspired by film, the beauty of my birth country as well as my infinite mothers love. I grew up watching black and white films from Fellini, Antonioni and Pasolini.

I realized that images can convey strong emotion and display a fantastic world. Not any less fantastic was the world around me. I have the beautiful coast of Sorrento and Positano to thank for my sense of beauty and light. From my mother I learned the willingness to fight

for what I love, and the love and respect for the people I meet.

      My work is created primarily by the fact that I watch the world with attention, and
somehow they occur in the same place where I was "created." My works are characterized
by the same thing that I am. You must stay true to yourself. Your own work must reflect
yourself somehow, and it must come from the heart. This will always bring satisfaction,
and I think success.


      Initially I was interested in all directions of photography and today I still do not like to
limit myself to a single area. But, what truly fascinates me are people. I love to interact with
them, to see what drives them, and to observe their psyche. Photography is an excellent
way to explore people, and the best place to do this is on the street. When I am on the
street I follow my instincts and I listen to my feelings. If my instinct says left, then I go left.

Frequently, I find after as if I had deja vu. Maybe this is just life experiences. The street is like a text. I can read it in my own imperfect way.

      I love to be on the street and watch others. It is such a joy to be alive and decipher
what is happening around us. I watch all who come down the street, try to read possible
connections between individuals, and try to understand what would happen if they came
together or parted.
When it comes to image content, the street offers incredible vivid
potential. I am looking for nothing specific, I just watch. Just as I do with waves that
constantly wash ashore, the street always brings something new. It enriches my life.

I always try to have a camera with me, and I am very open to the generosity of street life.


      Beginning in the early nineties, for a period of about fifteen years, I was, more than
ever before or after, extremely sensitive and open and very close to my subconscious.

I think this was also the time in which I did my best work. When I look back at my pictures,

I still remember everything that happened on that specific day. For example, the day I took the photo " The Flying Photographer", of unknown tourist in Venice. First, she turned her back to me to take a picture herself. Suddenly she moved from one foot to the other, and

her feet took the same position of the winged lion of San Marco in the distant background.

At the same time a gust of wind lifted her jacket, which produced an unexpected harmony with the wings of the lion. These are magic moments that we do not see every day.

But it is these moments that make life worth living as a photographer.

      During the time when my mother was ill, and then some time after her death, I was
extremely vulnerable and suddenly had difficulty approaching people. I discovered how
healing landscape photography can be. After some time this helped me back into my life
and closer again to people. I plunged for a time in portrait photography. Portraits create
unity. They show the view of the photographer as well as that of the people being
photographed. When the photographer decides to go to a certain setting, they already
have half of the portrait. Each photographer has their own point of view. My interest is in
the inner life of a person, their psyche, their spirituality and individuality. I hope that my
portraits reflect that.

      It is not much different when I photograph women. There are two different types of
women in my photographs: models and girlfriends. I love to take pictures of my girlfriends,
lovers and muses. The intimacy that I have with them is completely different than that of
the models. Nevertheless, it is important to create an atmosphere when working with
models. To find a kind of intimacy and a game of complicity. Only then is it possible to
capture the perfection of female grace and delicacy. Only the technical side can really be
planned. One can only hope that the chemistry is right between the photographer and the
model so that something new is created. With women I loved, my photography was often
the need to capture the moment. It's not about the foolish desire to stop the time in such a moment, it is about the materialization of many emotions at these moments.

With models, however, there are erotic moments, which are caused only by light or atmospherical conditions. These are purely intellectual emotions. Photography can not be summarized and always creates something new.

      Eroticism clearly belongs to the vocabulary of my photography. It is often the motor of my work, even when I'm not photographing women. Just as voyeurism can not be limited to erotic photography. Many of my images are characterized by voyeurism, although they are not erotic moments. Joy and freedom are essential in the eyes of a photographer.

      There are people who live with a view to the future, and others that live only in the past. I am one of those who like to remember. However, although, I do photograph to let emotion stay forever and I consider most of my photos documents of a passing time, my desire by making erotic pictures, is something else. Like a photograph of a landscape does not replace the smells of the wind or the happiness to be part of that place. Just as an erotic photo could never replace the odors of the body nor the physical pleasure between photographer and muse. For me it is rather the emotional satisfaction from a place and a body. To reconstruct the way I feel, and at the same time change the composition in which

I absorb the feeling. A calm face, a naked body or indiscreet gaze can cause the desire to hold that women just as she was at that time but again in another moment. A successful women ́s photograph has more to do with the individual model or muse in the true sense,

it has to do with all women.

Photography is the unquestioned need to hold certain moments.

Every picture tells us: "  It will never be like that again,"

and at the same time: "But it was! "


T- 123-456-7890

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