Bottom-Up View of Milan

Milan (Italy). Last Sunday the weather in Milan was simply perfect! It was a typical day of September, with fresh air and a blue sky. I had a walk around the new district called “Porta Nuova”, one of the most interesting real estate development in Milan in the last times, thanks also to the involvement of prestigious architects such as Cesar Pelli and Stefano Boeri.

Of course, I had my Leica Q with me…

I captured this photo from Piazza Gae Aulenti: it’s a nice bottom-up view of the UniCredit Tower, which is now shaping the skyline of Milan. Something a bit different from my usual photographs, maybe for this reason I liked the final result.

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If Photography Is Freedom, Photographing a Prison Is…?

Milan (Italy). Last Saturday – after visiting the World Press Photo 2016 exhibition – I spent the evening at a friend’s home for his housewarming. I did not bring my Leica Q with me, but in my pocket there was room enough for the Ricoh GR. And I was happy to use it in front of this interesting urban landscape, glorified by a very intense sunset.

When I was preparing the camera to capture this image, I was becoming more and more thoughtful about the sharp contrast in front of myself: photography, for me, is the quintessence of the sense of freedom; so, what can be the sense of photographing a prison?

Yes, the large building photographed here is the San Vittore prison, located in the heart of Milan (it dates back to 1872) and hosting more than 900 detainees: it was a bit impressive watching its tall walls, and the two different sides of it. On one side, there was the city, its traffic, people: in one word, there was freedom. On the other one, nobody – except some guards monitoring the situation and a sense of discomfort. The sunset was painting this strong juxtaposition with a gentle tone of blue and orange, and the clouds were making the sky agitated and a bit restless. Like myself, thinking about what at the end became the title of this post.

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Frank Gehry for the Louis Vuitton Foundation

Paris (France). The futuristic building, which hosts the Louis Vuitton Foundation (or “Fondation Louis Vuitton” in French) is one of those places where you can spend an entire day, walking up and down the stairs as well as exploring its halls, without getting bored. Furthermore, if you like architecture photography, you will enjoy the challenge of shooting a place characterized by “irregular” shapes, and which seems a ship with sails swollen by the wind. I found photographing this place, designed by the “starchitect” Frank Gehry, at the same time tough and exciting, a truly demanding experience; and I could not enjoy it more!

The photo here is just one of the many I captured during my visit: the light was creating some difficulties and I decided to include in the composition the interesting fountain outside the building. What is difficult to give is the real dimension of the entire structure: it’s really big, but I hardly could find a place to shoot it in its entire development. More photos will follow with the next posts (I will create the tag “Louis Vuitton Foundation”); for the moment, I recommend this place if you are planning a trip to Paris. It’s not the “typical” Parisian location (probably for this reason I liked it even more) although at the time I visited it, there was an amazing exhibition of paintings (Munch, Matisse, Picasso, Brancusi, Mondrian, Malevich just to mention some).

Another plus: the Louis Vuitton Foundation is in the middle of the Jardin d’Acclimatation, a very beautiful garden, very silent and far from the crowd.

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Ortisei Chill Out

Ortisei (Italy). Walking on the mountains and, at the same time, photographing is something that I really love. The landscape that some places – like for example the Dolomites, in Italy – offer is something of unique. And if on your way you gonna meet nice cows relaxing on a soft green grass, the scene is complete!

Days ago I was enjoying a walk at the feet of Sasso Lungo mountain (or “Langkofel”), one of the most beautiful of the Dolomites group in Gardena Valley (which are included in the UNESCO list, by the way). In front of me there was the Sella Group, another wonderful peak. I was not alone…

Lying down on the meadow, chillin’ out in front of that spectacular landscape, there was a large group of cows. They were eating fresh grass, relaxing, watching people like me (apparently smiling at my camera) and completing that wonderful scene. I could not resist of course, and I captured this image thinking that it was perfectly giving the idea of peace, tranquility, silence and calm that I usually have in mind when I think about mountains and – more specifically – Dolomites.

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Paris Sky

Paris (France). One of the never annoying things to do in Paris is simply watching its sky! Clouds, sunsets, colors… they always mix themselves up, creating often unique and impressive landscapes. This picture was taken last Saturday from Place de la Concorde (Tuilieres Garden); a dark, thick and threatening cloud was coming above my head, but at the same time a warm and reassuring sunset was coloring the sky behind the Tour Eiffel. The entire contrast was pretty exciting and impressive: from one side there was an “Armageddon style” situation, from the other one something more romantic and calm. I guess you want to know what happened at the end: you won’t believe me, but yes – it did not rain! I told you: watch the sky of Paris, you won’t get annoyed easily…

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A Storm Is Coming Over Paris

Paris (France). This photograph here shows how was the sky over Paris today: although landing at Charles de Gaulle Airport was a bit “tough” due to strong winds and heavy rains, I must admit that once arrived at destination, these thick and dark clouds were pretty impressive. Impossible resisting from photographing such an amazing landscape!

It’s not the first time I write about the sky of Paris, and I’m firmly convinced that it’s one of the most beautiful and surprising sky I have ever seen. It is – let me say – “charismatic”. Yes, this is the most suitable definition: the sky above Paris is charismatic. I like this sentence, I will very probably use it again soon…

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