The “photographic hunt” represented my true photographic initiation, an alternation of expectant and adrenaline patients shots often stolen, as in a sort of duel, to fearful birds always ready for a very quick escape. The real ambushes and the camouflage huts would arrive only some time later, the result of experiences and knowledge in rapid progression.
The interest in nocturnal birds of prey soon led me to start a very special path in parallel, developed thanks to my father’s electronic skills, that of the so-called “photographic traps”. A path as fascinating as it is complex, between photocells infrared and flash, ornithological studies and research in the field, sleepless nights and the need for an unshakable constancy as well as patience.
My equipment could not however be limited to a 500mm, the empathy and beauty of a natural landscape or the interest in a small flower soon pushed me to buy a wide-angle lens and what would have been the goal which has revolutionized my life, the 105mm macro.
With spontaneous orchids it was love at first sight and then flowers, water, plain and rock. A fundamental experience that introduced me into a new dimension of photographic, meditative and compositional art, conceived through a great control of the light sources and an unexplored and meticulous attention to all that part of the frame that is not subject.
For the mushrooms it was different, I had to wait many years and a radical change in the photographic style before feeling ready to face a topic that is so dear to me, linked to my childhood and characterized by deep emotional implications as well as an irresistible personal fascination. Finally cleared by the duty of naturalistic documentation I could tell them by venturing into the suggestion of an emotional and pictorial language built on scientific bases.
From the fungi to the trees and the woods, the passage was almost obvious, but certainly not banal from the photographic point of view, a challenging challenge in search of a style not taken for granted that celebrates the beauty and complexity of a theme that I consider the most difficult.
The interest and the genuine passion for photography began with the purchase of a 500mm f.8, a Russian catadish lens that is not very bright and not particularly easy to focus on. It was 1979, there was also something better on the market, nothing to do with quality and usability with the current super bright and stabilized canvases, with the fast tracking autofocus, with the usefulness of the editable ISO. This kind of photography was a challenging double challenge, first with your ability to approach the animals and then with that to adjust the equipment before shooting, many cameras including my Nikon FM was completely manual.
The growing interest in birds soon led me to the nocturnal birds of prey, captivated by the discreet and elusive charm of these extraordinary birds and their equally interesting world immersed in darkness. A world hardly penetrable for us, rich in suggestions and atavistic fears, in which our sight loses its sensibility until it almost succumbs. A silent world in which hearing becomes fundamental to orient oneself and to communicate, where also tact and smell find a new dimension. To tell photographically all this involved a challenge that had to be supported by the use of a lot of technology …
Among the flowers, to which I had begun to express photographic interest and not only, orchids immediately catalyzed much of my enthusiasm. I do not know the reasons, although I have read something about it since this seems to be a widespread phenomenon, but the sight of an orchid has always emotionally involved me more than many other flowers. I searched all over the Veneto region, from the lagoon to the 2500 meters of windy dolomitic ridges, in dense and dark undergrowth or sunny and dry meadows, in the peat bogs, on the foothills of Lake Garda and the Treviso hills, Paduan and Vicenza. Five years of research shared with his friend Giuseppe and, sometimes, supported by some more experienced friend …
….. “I looked for them so low that I could feel the breath of the Earth.
Stretched to their height I lost myself in the enchantment of this arcane Kingdom “
Mushroom for me is an important story, started in my childhood when it happened again with my parents in the woods. In the green and in the silence of the Dolomite spruce, in addition to the passion for research and the collection of mushrooms, the foundations are created for my naturalistic vocation and love for nature….