[:en]INTERVIEW WITH … Federico Argangeli[:it]INTERVIEW WITH … Federico Arcangeli[:]

[:en]Researched by Roberta Pastore

FEDERICO ARCANGELI
He was born in Rimini in 1983, small city on Italy’s east cost, where he currently lives and works as a nurse. In 2014 He discovered his passion for photography, especially for analog photography. In May 2014 He founded the blog “People_Are_Strangers” where He publishes his shots. He takes part in some competitions with excellent results and becomes a selected photographer of Wolrd Street Photography community. In 2015 He becomes a member of the collective Romagna Street Photography. In september 2015 He exposes his project “Freeze” at Sifest Off and He is finalist for the Marco Pesaresi award with his project, about Rimini’s beach, “Summer Attitude”.

Website: federicoarcangeli.com
Blog: pplarestrangers.com

Freeze Project:
Is a project about people. What makes us special are details. Hence my need to get closer, face to face with people. The flash is used to emphasize facial features and to separate the subject from the background. The result is a photo with no place and time. “We are a set of instants, as fast as flash light”.

6

10

Going back in time how was your passion for photography born ?

My passion for photography was born not so long ago. It’s a pretty recent passion, born about 2 years ago. When I moved out and started to live alone, together with my stuff I took an old Pentax Super ME that belonged to my father. I wanted to use it as ornament. Then, one day, staring at it, I asked myself “Why don’t you use it?” So I read the instructions, did some researches on the web, I put my first roll in (I’ve been a ‘roll virgin’ until that moment) and I started to shoot. Since then, I have never stopped.

9

8

Considering your works, which ones marked your entrance in the world of real photography?-

At the beginning I took a lot of photos, shooting everything. Sunsets, animals, colour and black and white rolls, high Iso and low Iso, landscapes, even flowers. But people gave me the real inspiration. But also with people I didn’t really make a selection though: I tended to shoot everything that struck my attention, without a real design. Lately I changed my approach: I tried to work following a project. I consider the last two projects I developed this year, “FREEZE” and “Summer Attitude”, good ones, good enough to let the critics judge them.

5

4

1

How do you manage colour and B&W?

Using a roll, it’s a choice I take before shooting, when I put the roll in.
I love black and white, I rarely use colour.
I think that B&W has a soul, it’s more essential because it takes out an essential data, but it’s more evocative. Shadows, atmosphere, everything is more dramatic. Maybe it’s only me: I’m a black and white person.

7

What is your relationship with the street and the people who are in your shots?

In the streets I try to be discrete, but what I prefer the most is a direct approach, face to face with the subject and I very often use the flash. Generally I tend to avoid eye contact with the subject before shooting, and once I do it I answer with a smile and a ‘thank you’. Most of the time people thank me in return or more simply they continue their own way lost in their thoughts. It rarely happened to me to argue with those who didn’t want to be photographed. In this case I explain that taking pictures to people is my passion and that I will not publish the photo without their approval, so generally everything goes well. On the contrary if this should bring to a furious fight, I think that I won’t defend myself, but I’ll continue to shoot.

3

2

Summer Attitude

Is a beach project.
The sea and the beach are places where we expose ourselves, we take off our clothes and our inhibitions too, showing others our true self, our assets and flaws. Life is different on the beach, everyday rules change, the boundaries of what is permitted expand and our most primitive part comes to the surface.
Today’s society, media, politics, religion draw our attention to what divides us: differences.
Summer Attitude aims at being a journey – feet on the shore and eyes ironic – focusing on the little gestures which make us smile and the little things which connect us, just as the sea around us.
All the photos attached were taken in Rimini during the summer of 2015.

9

10

Which kind of camera do you use?

I have 7 cameras, two reflex (Pentax Super ME, Pentax Super A), three rangefinders (Fed2, Fed5, Canon Canonet QL17) and two point and shoot (Olympus Trip 35, Ricoh GR1). They are all analogue 35mm.

What determines if a photo is “good one” or not?

It’s never easy to judge your own photos, or to be critical about yourself. Many times we are so emotionally attached to a photo that we are not objective when we look at it. That’s why I think that shooting through a roll helped me. Sometimes they pass weeks or even months before I print a roll and I see the proofs that I forget about some shots. But this allows me to be more detached when I watch them and, as a consequence, to be more objective. I believe that what makes a photo a good one is what it transmits. The subject for sure, as well as the light, they are very important factors but more than this, it’s what a photo gives you when you watch it.We pour ourselves in the pictures, in our subjects choice, in the framing. What I look for in a picture when I look at it is not the technique, but the photographer.

8

6

When you are shooting, do you have an image in your mind? Do you build the final photo before shooting it or are your images also a result of a post-production phase?
When I go out and I am on a street, I don’t know what will capture my attention or what kind of photo I will shoot. I always have my camera with me, because you’ll never know when it’ll be the right time to shoot a good photo. So the first rule is to be always ready and to keep your eyes wide open. Working following a project allowed me focusing and understanding when to shoot and when not to shoot deciding it before. Nevertheless, streets and people always surprise you and this is what I like. To be surprised.

7

4

What training did you follow? Who inspired you?
My best teacher has been one camera of mine, Fed2, completely manual. No lightmeter, manual focussing, only metal and mechanism. There is no teacher better than this. It forces you to think, to learn the rules and techniques, so to have your own techniques and then to forget them. I read some books, scrutinised some blogs, I watched many photos of other photographers, from master to amateur like me. Asking myself how could they shoot those pictures, what technique did they use, being curious.

5

3

What was your first camera?

My first camera was a Canon D1000, that I bought together with my brother. I think to have used it for a trip to America before abandoning it. Pentax super Me, the touch of its metal, its weight, the noise of the shutter and mechanisms, rewinding the roll… I would say this was my first camera.

2

What is photography to you? And what should not be instead?
I’m not that pretentious to say what photography should not be, but I can tell you what it is for me. Being a street photographer I love people and the environment surrounding them. I don’t like pose photos, it’s spontaneity that I want. Sometimes I try to be discrete, invisible, and weightless. Other times on the contrary I’m more direct, face to face, influencing the scenario, getting closer, as much as I can.

What is the photo that struck you the most of a great historical photographer ?
There are lots I photo that struck me. When you start taking street photos you can’t consider Henri Cartier Bresson or William Klein. But what struck me the most was Bruce Gilden style and more than a photo it was a book “A beautiful catastrophe”. Every page left me breathless.

1

What is your favorite technique?

For sure hyperfocal and area focussing. In the streets things happen very fast and most of the time you only have the time to push the click button. Closed diaphragm and hyperfocal allow me to be ready without worrying about focusing, risking to lose the moment.
Recently I use external flash a lot, to emphasise subjects, their face details, as I can direct the light detaching the subject from the background.

Why do street photography?

This is a very interesting question. Very often people ask “How do you take a photo?” or “What kind of setup do you use?” but not so often people think about why that photo was taken or why do you do street photography. As I was saying before, this is a recent passion, and as all recent passions it is very strong. First of all I found out that taking pictures makes me happy, and taking photos to people makes me even more happy. Very often, when I’m not working and I’m at home, I want to take my camera and go out in the streets because I feel that I’m loosing something and I want to be there when it will happen. I admit, I’ve always been a wanderer, but now I have a real excuse to go out more often. So I do street photography for myself more than for any other reason, and then to show people that in their everyday life amazing things happen.

What is your best shot and what does it represent for you?

One of my best shot is this (insert Photo1). I remember that the first time I saw it, after scanning and printing it, I couldn’t believe myself. I thought: “Man, this could be a Lynch movie’s cover without any doubt! “. This photo gave me lots of satisfactions, it was chosen in a world street photography contest in the portraits section, it was exposed in Dublin in an important show about street photography last summer and it gave me the right push to continue. Lately there has been another photo that I love very much and that
I don’t have enough of. I took it during a party, at night, on the shore. (insert Photo2). Maybe it’s the atmosphere it gives me or maybe it’s because I wonder what that child it staring at. I think I’ll continue to look at it until I find it out.

[:it]

Researched by Roberta Pastore

FEDERICO ARCANGELI
He was born in Rimini in 1983, small city on Italy’s east cost, where he currently lives and works as a nurse. In 2014 He discovered his passion for photography, especially for analog photography. In May 2014 He founded the blog “People_Are_Strangers” where He publishes his shots. He takes part in some competitions with excellent results and becomes a selected photographer of Wolrd Street Photography community. In 2015 He becomes a member of the collective Romagna Street Photography. In september 2015 He exposes his project “Freeze” at Sifest Off and He is finalist for the Marco Pesaresi award with his project, about Rimini’s beach, “Summer Attitude”.

Website: federicoarcangeli.com
Blog: pplarestrangers.com

Freeze Project:
Is a project about people. What makes us special are details. Hence my need to get closer, face to face with people. The flash is used to emphasize facial features and to separate the subject from the background. The result is a photo with no place and time. “We are a set of instants, as fast as flash light”.

6

10

Going back in time how was your passion for photography born ?

My passion for photography was born not so long ago. It’s a pretty recent passion, born about 2 years ago. When I moved out and started to live alone, together with my stuff I took an old Pentax Super ME that belonged to my father. I wanted to use it as ornament. Then, one day, staring at it, I asked myself “Why don’t you use it?” So I read the instructions, did some researches on the web, I put my first roll in (I’ve been a ‘roll virgin’ until that moment) and I started to shoot. Since then, I have never stopped.

9

8

Considering your works, which ones marked your entrance in the world of real photography?

At the beginning I took a lot of photos, shooting everything. Sunsets, animals, colour and black and white rolls, high Iso and low Iso, landscapes, even flowers. But people gave me the real inspiration. But also with people I didn’t really make a selection though: I tended to shoot everything that struck my attention, without a real design. Lately I changed my approach: I tried to work following a project. I consider the last two projects I developed this year, “FREEZE” and “Summer Attitude”, good ones, good enough to let the critics judge them.

5

4

1

How do you manage colour and B&W?

Using a roll, it’s a choice I take before shooting, when I put the roll in.
I love black and white, I rarely use colour.
I think that B&W has a soul, it’s more essential because it takes out an essential data, but it’s more evocative. Shadows, atmosphere, everything is more dramatic. Maybe it’s only me: I’m a black and white person.

7

What is your relationship with the street and the people who are in your shots?

In the streets I try to be discrete, but what I prefer the most is a direct approach, face to face with the subject and I very often use the flash. Generally I tend to avoid eye contact with the subject before shooting, and once I do it I answer with a smile and a ‘thank you’. Most of the time people thank me in return or more simply they continue their own way lost in their thoughts. It rarely happened to me to argue with those who didn’t want to be photographed. In this case I explain that taking pictures to people is my passion and that I will not publish the photo without their approval, so generally everything goes well. On the contrary if this should bring to a furious fight, I think that I won’t defend myself, but I’ll continue to shoot.

3

2

Summer Attitude :

Is a beach project.
The sea and the beach are places where we expose ourselves, we take off our clothes and our inhibitions too, showing others our true self, our assets and flaws. Life is different on the beach, everyday rules change, the boundaries of what is permitted expand and our most primitive part comes to the surface.
Today’s society, media, politics, religion draw our attention to what divides us: differences.
Summer Attitude aims at being a journey – feet on the shore and eyes ironic – focusing on the little gestures which make us smile and the little things which connect us, just as the sea around us.
All the photos attached were taken in Rimini during the summer of 2015.

9

10

Which kind of camera do you use?

I have 7 cameras, two reflex (Pentax Super ME, Pentax Super A), three rangefinders (Fed2, Fed5, Canon Canonet QL17) and two point and shoot (Olympus Trip 35, Ricoh GR1). They are all analogue 35mm.

What determines if a photo is “good one” or not?

It’s never easy to judge your own photos, or to be critical about yourself. Many times we are so emotionally attached to a photo that we are not objective when we look at it. That’s why I think that shooting through a roll helped me. Sometimes they pass weeks or even months before I print a roll and I see the proofs that I forget about some shots. But this allows me to be more detached when I watch them and, as a consequence, to be more objective. I believe that what makes a photo a good one is what it transmits. The subject for sure, as well as the light, they are very important factors but more than this, it’s what a photo gives you when you watch it.We pour ourselves in the pictures, in our subjects choice, in the framing. What I look for in a picture when I look at it is not the technique, but the photographer.

8

6

When you are shooting, do you have an image in your mind? Do you build the final photo before shooting it or are your images also a result of a post-production phase?

When I go out and I am on a street, I don’t know what will capture my attention or what kind of photo I will shoot. I always have my camera with me, because you’ll never know when it’ll be the right time to shoot a good photo. So the first rule is to be always ready and to keep your eyes wide open. Working following a project allowed me focusing and understanding when to shoot and when not to shoot deciding it before. Nevertheless, streets and people always surprise you and this is what I like. To be surprised.

7

4

What training did you follow? Who inspired you?

My best teacher has been one camera of mine, Fed2, completely manual. No lightmeter, manual focussing, only metal and mechanism. There is no teacher better than this. It forces you to think, to learn the rules and techniques, so to have your own techniques and then to forget them. I read some books, scrutinised some blogs, I watched many photos of other photographers, from master to amateur like me. Asking myself how could they shoot those pictures, what technique did they use, being curious.

5

3

What was your first camera?

My first camera was a Canon D1000, that I bought together with my brother. I think to have used it for a trip to America before abandoning it. Pentax super Me, the touch of its metal, its weight, the noise of the shutter and mechanisms, rewinding the roll… I would say this was my first camera.

2

What is photography to you? And what should not be instead?

I’m not that pretentious to say what photography should not be, but I can tell you what it is for me. Being a street photographer I love people and the environment surrounding them. I don’t like pose photos, it’s spontaneity that I want. Sometimes I try to be discrete, invisible, and weightless. Other times on the contrary I’m more direct, face to face, influencing the scenario, getting closer, as much as I can.

What is the photo that struck you the most of a great historical photographer ?

There are lots I photo that struck me. When you start taking street photos you can’t consider Henri Cartier Bresson or William Klein. But what struck me the most was Bruce Gilden style and more than a photo it was a book “A beautiful catastrophe”. Every page left me breathless.

1

What is your favorite technique?

For sure hyperfocal and area focussing. In the streets things happen very fast and most of the time you only have the time to push the click button. Closed diaphragm and hyperfocal allow me to be ready without worrying about focusing, risking to lose the moment.
Recently I use external flash a lot, to emphasise subjects, their face details, as I can direct the light detaching the subject from the background.

Why do street photography?

This is a very interesting question. Very often people ask “How do you take a photo?” or “What kind of setup do you use?” but not so often people think about why that photo was taken or why do you do street photography. As I was saying before, this is a recent passion, and as all recent passions it is very strong. First of all I found out that taking pictures makes me happy, and taking photos to people makes me even more happy. Very often, when I’m not working and I’m at home, I want to take my camera and go out in the streets because I feel that I’m loosing something and I want to be there when it will happen. I admit, I’ve always been a wanderer, but now I have a real excuse to go out more often. So I do street photography for myself more than for any other reason, and then to show people that in their everyday life amazing things happen.

What is your best shot and what does it represent for you?

One of my best shot is this (insert Photo1). I remember that the first time I saw it, after scanning and printing it, I couldn’t believe myself. I thought: “Man, this could be a Lynch movie’s cover without any doubt! “. This photo gave me lots of satisfactions, it was chosen in a world street photography contest in the portraits section, it was exposed in Dublin in an important show about street photography last summer and it gave me the right push to continue. Lately there has been another photo that I love very much and that
I don’t have enough of. I took it during a party, at night, on the shore. (insert Photo2). Maybe it’s the atmosphere it gives me or maybe it’s because I wonder what that child it staring at. I think I’ll continue to look at it until I find it out.

[:]