July 1, 2014 Leave a comment
November 7, 2012 1 Comment
Sleep Together – Bastian Kalous – Sweden, Germany
It was one of our last vacations days in Sweden when we took a trip to a small island not too far from Gothenburg. When we got there the sun was shining and a lot of people had our very same idea, so we decided to avoid the crowd and left for a walk along the coast. We found a nice spot on a flat rock; a light breeze was refreshing the air bringing a salty smell from the sea. Julia and Schoki decided to take a break from walking, watching and shooting pictures, and felt asleep in the sun. I pulled out the camera and captured this special, relaxing moment.
I loved Time Zero, the movie, and back then I developed a fascination for magical sceneries with crazy colors, orange flames and all the manipulation stuff but, unfortunately, Polaroid was already out of business and I had no idea where I could find that specific film. I took my first picture with a plastic Polaroid 600 camera, than I owned a Image Camera and finally my first SX-70. When, not a long time ago, I finally found some Time Zero film, I began creating my own, surreal little world on instant material; I was hooked.
Most of my pictures are shot in the Nationalpark Bayerischer Wald, Bayern Forest Nat’l Park, where I go for long walks along with my dog and both a Polaroid SX-70 and a Wista 4×5 Field cameras in the backpack.
I keep my eyes open for landscapes that I can transform in surreal sceneries, transmitting good mood and the little stories behind them. I try to show the perfect ‘unperfectness’ of Mother Nature, in order to bring the viewer in a quieter and not so frantic world. A world with more time for watching, listening, feeling and dreaming.
November 2, 2012 Leave a comment
Reino Zoologico – Filipe Berndt – Brazil, Italy
Reino Zoologico goes beyond our simple child zoo memories. Animals placed in an artificial environment collide with our child memories. Children’s delight gives way to adult’s reality. As a result of an extensive research and visit to over twenty five zoos in Brazil and Italy, the images show empty spaces. We do not see animals, but we perceive their presence, either by body stains left on the walls or by glasses fogged by their breath. Their presence is immanent. The enhancement of architecture created by man in attempt to replicate nature is intentional. He believes cement stone, plastic plants and artificial waterfalls can achieve the same level of life in the open.
Filipe Berndt’s minimalistic images emphasize on the contrast between memories and reality, wildlife beauty and artificial one. Green and brown are the colors of a forest, here they talk about walls, rocks, cement, hard presence of what confine visually absent animals to a dreary and alienated environment.
@Central Galeria, R. Mourato Coelho 751, Sao Paulo, Brazil – Opening November 8, till December 15, 2012.
August 30, 2012 Leave a comment
Da quando, più o meno all’inizio dell’anno, sono iniziate le restrizioni che regolano l’acquisto di dollari per i cittadini argentini, si è sviluppato un mercato cambiario parallelo. All’inizio poca cosa, 20-40 centesimi di differenza sul valore ufficiale mantenuto quasi fisso dalle massicce vendite di dollari da parte della Banca Centrale. Poi, col tempo e l’inasprimento delle condizioni di acquisto, la differenza tra i due dollari, il verde e il blue, quello parallelo, è andata aumentando. Il cambio della valuta Usa alla data odierna, 30 agosto, è di 4,36 pesos per 1 dollaro. Nei primi tempi dell’introduzione delle restrizioni la compravendita si faceva per strada, lungo le pedonali Florida e Lavalle, nel Microcentro; i cambisti si avvicinavano alle facce da turisti e sussurravano dolaresdolares. Dopo l’intervento della polizia i cambisti sono svaporati come una goccia d’acqua nella steppa della Patagonia, ma, ovviamente, non hanno mollato l’osso del guadagno facile. Così che sono apparse le cuevas, le grotte, dove il dollaro blu si compra-vende come se si fosse in una banca. Non ci sono cartelli per strada ad indicarne l’ingresso, ma si sa che lì cambiano dollari. Si tratta di appartamenti, retrobotteghe, bar. I biglietti da 100 pesos sono ripiegati su sé stessi in mazzette da 10 banconote ciascuno, e poi legati con un elastico. In gergo, per la forma che assume il pacco di soldi, 5 mazzette, 5.000 pesos fanno un cubo; 10 mazzette, 10.000 pesos fanno un ladrillo, un mattone. Oggi, fine agosto, 1.000 dollari valgono la bellezza di 6.360 pesos, con una differenza del 50% sul valore del cambio ufficiale. E’ forse questo il tasso di inflazione annuale in Argentina?, il cui valore reale è tenuto gelosamente nascosto dall’Indec, l’istituto di statistica governativo, che dichiara percentuali decimali mensili. Se non è tanto, sicuramente ci si avvicina molto.
Per il turista che si affida al cambio ufficiale, comprando dollari negli aeroporti di arrivo, pagando con carta di credito o prelevando con Bancomat, l’Argentina è diventata una destinazione costosa. Alloggi e ristoranti sono ormai a livelli quasi europei, e dalle vetrine dei negozi, per timore di rappresaglie fiscali, sono scomparsi i cartelli che indicavano la disponibilità alla vendita di merce anche in valuta straniera: dollaro ed euro. Gli argentini, in compenso e più di prima, continuano nella ricerca dei biglietti verdi, che passano di mano attraverso un conoscente locale o un amico.
Per il valore del dollaro al mercato parallelo, basta cercare su Goole: dolar blue argentina.
August 17, 2012 Leave a comment
Mocca the Sphynx cat – Arno – Luxembourg
I take pictures of my cats quite often — with my professional cameras or simply with my phone. However, often during the best, most intimate or most playful moments I do not have any camera at hand and then, sadly, I miss those moments. Taking pictures of my cats is also sometimes difficult because they want to play with the straps of my cameras whenever they can reach them. Sphynx cats are special because they are very interactive with other cats (that’s why I have two), dogs, and people. They require a lot of attention because they love to play and cuddle, they are always around people — they even jump into the shower! Since these kitties have no fur they need to be bathed from time to time. Moreover, they should never be let outside because they could catch cold or get sunburnt. The rest of the care is similar to that of other cats’. Although to some persons Sphynx cats look like aliens, most of the people fall in love with these cats the moment they get a chance to interact.
90 percent of pet owners talk to their pets, and no doubts all of them also take pictures of their animal friends, mainly cats and dogs, and dull pictures. And pretty much all of these millions of pictures make their way to the Net provoking yawning and repetitive unoriginal “cute” comments. Then some skilled photographer comes along with a particular touch for portraits, people portraits, strong contrasts of body and environment, and here we go with a cat photo that stands out of the crowd. I agree, the cat breed definitely helps to make the photo original, as the matching eyes / fabric color, but what really makes this image not a pet photo is the photographer’s approach to composition and lighting. This photo is a perfect portrait, doesn’t matter if pet or human.
August 2, 2012 Leave a comment
Rainy Annecy – Ivan Vessela a.k.a. FIN FILM – Annecy, France
Since some time ago I’ve got obsessed with Tilt-Shift lenses. Since I’m not a professional photographer I just walk around with a camera and shoot lots of pictures. I’m trying to achieve a miniature look of the shots without using software or postproduction. I’m just getting accustomed to those kind of lenses.
In that sense this image, like many others I shot, is a tryout and doesn’t really have a deeper meaning or statement. As one can notice here, all my pictures are taken from a high ground in order to make the subjects look like in a toy model. What really pleases me is the change of the scale: you shoot something that’s big but it looks rather small and fake. I like that.
In the case of this particular shot I was attending the animation film festival in Annecy, and as I exit the projection hall I found myself on the second floor in front of the big window. I wouldn’t miss a chance to take a shot like that. I wouldn’t say that this is the best miniature look, but it’s definitely an odd looking image.
Tilt-Shift photography refers to the use of specific lenses that can change the plane of focus with a tilt, rotation of the lens plane relative to the image plane, and a shift, movement of the lens parallel to the image plane. The effect is often used to simulate a miniature scene.