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Interview: Photographer Giulio Irving (Italy)

Can you tell us a little about you?

I am a semi-pro photographer (photography alone won’t allow me to keep my family in shape) from Rome, Italy. I am fifty-something, married. I am actually into several forms of art, being also a long time musician and writer, but photography is what turns me on these days.

How and when did you get into photography?

Although I am not SO old, it’s been more than forty years since I started toying with a professional camera. As a teenager I was already developing and printing my own photos. For a few years I left professional photography aside, to pursue different interests, but I always had a camera with me. The shift to digital photography was long and painful but in the end I was able to manage it and today postproduction is a part of my daily routine.

What does photography mean to you?

I am amazed I can express myself with images. I was never very good in visual art, I can’t draw or paint, I cannot really talk with colors or make elaborate visual projects. The technology behind photography helped me to express visually in a way I wouldn’t be able to do in any other way.

Please briefly describe your photography style for our readers.

I consider myself a portraitist, which for me means “working with people”, My goal is to describe people emotions as best as I can and of course through my own culture, ability and imagination. I try to avoid getting into a “style”, whatever that means. But if I had to choose, I’d say that low light, contrasted, one light portraits are my favourite setup.

Where do you get inspiration from? As Ansel Adams used to say, from all the photo I have seen, the people I met, the book I read, the music I listened to. Photography is experience and curiosity.

Studio, on location or both? Both but studio is the place where art is done

Think you in advance what you want in the picture? No, never. Sometimes if I am pressed by the model I deliver a mood board, knowing full well the session will most likely go in a completely different direction. Sometimes I choose a light setup or a dress as guideline, but I’d rather see the person in front of my camera and then decide. I like to be surprised and to surprise.

Would you consider yourself a hobbyist or a paid professional? I chose not to pursue a full time job as photographer. I might try in the future, but currently I am happy to be free of money needs from photography.

What has been your most memorable session and why? Hard to say. There were many because if you are able to listen, people will always amaze you.

Nikon or Canon? Favorite lens?

I am long time Nikon fan. My number one lens in studio is definitely the 85mmF1.8. It allows me to be at the right distance from the subject, not too close, not too far.On location my favourite lens is 105mmF2DC. Sharp, tought, great colors. When I need an amazing bokeh I use the 70-200F2,8

What is one piece of advice you would like to offer a new photographer looking to start their own business? The market for portrait photography is shrinking nowadays, due to the vast availability of digital cameras and good photographers. Weddings/events are the main source of income for professional photographers. Just a few are able to survive doing just fashion/editorial/commercial and as far as I know none doing just artistic portraits.It’s a market with a strong competition and to make a living out of it you need dedication, technical skills, practice, communication skills. It’s definitely an uphill road and only a few get to the top.

What do you think of our new magazine?

A nice web site, definitely.The two things I will change is the overall fonts. Choose one and stick to it, it must be modern and appealing. There are at least three different fonts in the site and not all nice. Also I would implement a different tool to watch photos in hig res, such as carousel, etc.

You can find me on facebook as Giulio Irving or on instagram with the same name.

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