Interview: Photographer Marco Caso (Italy)
Can you tell us a little about you?
I'm from Turin, a city in the north of Italy that is known for being the home of the Italian car industry.
I graduated in engineering, as my parents wanted. I worked for a few years in the automotive industry, but now I take care of my family's real estate business.
I am passionate about sailing and skiing and in practising these sports I am facilitated by the location of my home town, that is one hundred kilometers from both the sea and the Alps.
How and when did you get into photography?
I started photographing for real at 12, when I received as a gift a Yashica FX3 that was the cheapest SLR on the market. I can say that being a photographer was my childhood dream, but as I mentioned, my family saw a different profession for me.
Later I realized that practicing film photography accurately was difficult and expensive. I was not able to have the same control over the development and printing process, that great photographers I admired have. Consequently, I lost a bit of enthusiasm, that I found again when digital photography became accessible.
So I started using digital cameras in the 90s and this time I was able to control the whole process, from shooting to post production. I was among the first in my town to take pictures with an 8 MP DSLR. This time photography became a kind of job for me, and this situation lasted some years. Later, with the mass diffusion of digital cameras, I saw the amount of work decrease.
What does photography mean to you?
I recognize myself in these words attributed to Garry Winogrand: “For me the true business of photography is to capture a bit of reality... if, later, the reality means something to someone else, so much the better”.
At the end the best thing of being photographer is to hear or read that someone actually find a meaning in your picture that you hadn't seen or that you didn't think you would highlight.
Please briefly describe your photography style for our readers.
There are portrait photographers for whom having a style means always repeating the same photograph by changing the subject, that is the model.
I honesty never felt okay to do such a thing, so I can say that from a technical point of view I don't have my own style, as readers can realize looking at my pictures.
Then for me photography is first of all an aesthetic question. For this reason, whatever is the subject of photography, my goal is to try to take a picture that is nice to look at. So I may have a style in defining the pose, the composition or the point from which I photograph. But I fear that explaining this would be difficult for me and boring for the readers.
Where do you get inspiration from?
There are two foreign photographers that I like so much, Steven Meisel and Mario Testino and then there is an Italian photographer, Giogio Gastel, that I got to know and who unfortunately passed away recently.
These are photographers that I admire very much, I don't know how effectively I am able to inspire myself to them.
Do you think in advance what you want in the picture?
Yes, always, I think about the pose, the lighting and all the details. Then it happens that my picture does not come out as I thought it should be. Sometimes it is better, but more frequently it is worse.
Studio, on location or both?
I like to shoot in my studio, located in Collegno, on the outskirts of Turin, but honestly, I prefer to photograph outdoors. The world is so beautiful with its colours that it's a shame to limit yourself to take photographs in front of a white background in a studio.
Would you consider yourself a hobbyist or a paid professional?
I couldn't live on what I get from photography, so I don't consider myself a paid professional. As I said when I started digital photography, I had the illusion of being able to live doing this job, but then I realized that it was really not possible for me.
What has been your most memorable session and why?
Many years ago, on the roof of an exhibition center, I was taking fashion pictures for an italian magazine when an helicopter landed. Air displaced by the helicopter blew away the flashes with the diffusors. When the survaillance people noticed the mess I was about to end up arrested for threatening air traffic and peoples safety.
Nikon or Canon? Favorite lens?
Canon. I use 7D and 5D and I prefer the first one for outdoor shooting. The lens I really need for portrait is only the Canon 24-105 L. I can say that everything else is superfluous for me.
What is one piece of advice you would like to offer a new photographer looking to start their own business?
As I said I work in the early 2000s, before digital cameras spread and photography turned from a profession to a hobby. At the time, customer satisfaction and word of mouth among customer mattered a lot. So I would tell the photographers to make customers happy, giving them the photos customers want and not the ones the photographer is able to do at his best.
What do you think of our new magazine?
The published picture are always of very good quality. I am always amazed seeing how many photographers better than me are around and have their work published in your magazine.
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