Here you are the second part of the interview to Roberto Nistri, awarded travel photographer. Read it to understand his personal approach and discover how to personalize your shots and create unique and distinctive travel pictures.
- Let’s talk about your personal photographic approach. When is a picture really able to tell a story according to you?
My approach starts from the study and knowledge of the subject I decide to shoot, and this is true both for nature, people and social images. I consider that, in order to tell a story to someone by using one single shot, you first have to know about that history. As I was telling before, an emotional involvement and awareness are essential elements to try to summarize in a single pictures all the elements to make a situation perfectly understandable even for inexpert people. Sometimes, indeed, this is not enough by the way, and the photographer needs to add some information: captions are usually necessary, above all in photo features, and these could be created only by someone that was on the field when the picture was shot.
- You graduated in Biological Sciences and started shooting landscapes and submarine environments. Is your past experience part of your actual photography?
Yes indeed. Usually the workshops I arrange are, in fact, a balanced mix of naturalistic and travel photography. Talking about underwater photography instead, I still practice it and in some cases, that technical knowledge has been useful for me to obtain unusual pictures, not only related to the “naturalistic field”.
- Is travelling necessary in order to find images, stories and inspiration according to you?
Travels open doors on realities that are completely different from the one we live every day and in this sense they are unique occasions for a photographer. But that doesn’t mean the destination has to be an exotic faraway land. You can find interesting stories, perfect to be narrated through photos, even in your city, exactly “around the corner”.
Furthermore, sometimes a travel doesn’t necessarily imply a physical movement: it can be a mental one too. For my project ” In the Wild World of the Writers” I asked 99 Italian writers to tell me something about their “natural habitat” and I portrayed them in there. Usually these places were not physical nor geographic, but mental…
- Can you please tell us something about a travel experience that has been particularly touching or interesting for you?
Some years ago, I could say I accidentally found myself in Gambela, an Ethiopian city in the middle of nowhere, not far from the South Sudan border. There, I visited one of the most extraordinary and less popular parks of all Africa, where tourism doesn’t exist and for this reason the park runs the risk to be destroyed and vanish. Here as it happens in the most famous Masai Mara Reserve, in Kenya, an impressive antelopes migration takes place every year. Experience it was really an intense emotion for me; I really hope to go back there soon with a photographic project aiming at the preservation of the park, useful to enhance its extraordinary and underrated beauty.
- Finally, what would you suggest to the many people that are approaching to photography?
I would suggest them to shoot a lot and not only in canonical occasions (travel, holidays…). A good photographer is, according to me, an artist but also a well trained person, able to take advantage of every situation passing in front of his lens. This manual skills can only be obtained and preserved with a lot of training.