What’s Currently in My Bag?

Milan (Italy). Sometimes I receive message from people that are curious to know what is in my bag. They are confused – and I can understand them – because I frequently post photos taken months, if not years, before. And this contributes to their curiosity.

I’m just back from summer holidays, which is the period of the year when I stress use my cameras and lenses most. So, it is also an opportunity to test them and develop my opinion about what I have in my hands.

This blog – let me just remind it one more time – has not any purpose to test, promote or review photographic gears. There are excellent (and definitely much more popular) blogs that do it excellently. This is a blog to show and share my photos, but I understand that sometimes it can be interesting knowing what camera or lens has been used to capture a determined image.

This summer I decided to travel a bit lighter than I did in the past. While in January – during a trip around Vietnam – I brought one Nikon D810 and one Nikon Df, with only prime lenses (24, 35, 58, 105), this August I brought only the Nikon Df with one Zeiss 18, one Voigtlander 40, an old glorious Nikon 55, a 105 and a 180 together with a Leica Q. Basically, i was walking with the Leica in my hand, taking the Df out of my bag for some specific situations…

Will I remain with this configuration? Who knows… I must admit that I’m quite curious to see what Leica is doing and preparing. Some rumors talk about a new system, and I’m quite excited about this idea. At the same time, I think that the Nikon Df is still the only DSLR that can stay in my bag, and I will not replace it for another camera with the same technology.

Let’s see…

Ah, this photo has been taken with an iPhone 🙂


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Rione Terra, Pozzuoli (Landscape From The Marina Just After a Rainstorm)

Naples (Italy). As anticipated in my previous post, I spent some relaxing days around Naples and its gulf. This time I had the opportunity to explore not only the city (to me, one of the most beautiful and interesting places in Italy) but also to visit the coast from a privileged observation point: a boat!. In the next days (hopefully, but more realistically I would rather say “weeks” since I’m a bit overwhelmed) I will post more images from the Gulf of Naples, the Islands and the Amalfi Coast.

The first image selected here comes from Pozzuoli, a medium-size town (ca. 80,000 inhabitants) with a very old history: according to some studies, a first Greek colony was settled here probably around 500 BC and its initial name was Dicearkia. More reliable evidences say that Pozzuoli was established in 194 BC as a Roman colony, being initially named “Puteoli” from “puteus”, a Latin word which means “well”. Another possible origin of the name Puteoli is again a Latin word – “puteo” – which means “to stink”, simply because this place is very close to a “Solfatara” (all the region is pretty “volcanic” and the Vesuvio is just at the other side of the Gulf.

The so called “Rione Terra” photographed here was the first settlement of Pozzuoli / Puteoli. I captured this landscape immediately after a very heavy rainstorm, when the first rays of sun were beginning to filter across the dark clouds, illuminating – let me more correctly say “painting with light” – the Rione. To be honest I was also waiting for a nice rainbow, but unfortunately it did not come… However I liked the final result, and I decided to share it here.

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At Christmas Time, We Let in Light and Banish Shade (Florence, 2015)

Florence (Italy). I took this photo last Saturday, when I was walking around Florence enjoying the city where I was born. Exactly one year ago I took the same photo and I posted it with the same title! Perhaps, now that Photographing Around Me is going through its second year of life, I should consider carefully what I posted in the past to avoid the risk of being repetitive…

However, I have been feeling something for this photo since the moment I prepared its composition, trying to include the carousel, the tree and the illuminated building – all of them symbols of Christmas and typical of this period; and I even used it as a cover of my Facebook profile (by the way, feel free to follow me if you want, it’s open to everyone and I use it mainly to share my blog’s posts and some other photos).

Why this photo is so important to me?

Both when I was capturing it, as well as when I was editing and preparing it for the blog, some words came to my mind:

… It’s Christmas time, there’s no need to be afraid

At Christmas time, we let in light and banish shade

And in our world of plenty, we can spread a smile of joy …

I guess it won’t take too much time remembering the song’s lyrics these words are coming from (however, just in case…). And I found these words incredibly appropriate, considering the hard times we are going through and what’s happening in the world. So, I truly hope that this Christmas – not only for believers – will come into our lives spreading these exact words and teaching us how to smile. Again.

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Red Full Moon Rising on the Gulf of Naples

Naples (Italy). Usually I never post similar photos in this blog, or – at least – I never do it in a short time period. But this landscape of Naples, taken few hours after the previous one, left me literally breathless and I thought it was deserving an exception.

Let me try to describe the context… I was attending a special pre-wedding party at my hotel’s rooftop, and I can easily say that it was already a “perfect night”. Imagine: one of those nights with perfect people, perfect atmosphere, perfect food & drinks; one of those nights when you ask yourself: “what else? what can I desire more than what I’m living right now?”. Then – by chance – you turn back and … “Oh my God!!” There was a full moon just rising on the Gulf of Naples: it was big, perfectly circular and red. And it was illuminating the entire cost with its gentle warm light.

I could not resist: I had my small and powerful Ricoh GR with me (as usual) so I placed it on the fence and I took this long-exposure photograph, trying to balance the different lights’ intensities. This is the final result, and watching this photograph is a little bit like living that night again: that un-for-get ta-ble perfect night with a red full moon rising on the Gulf of Naples.

(Isn’t it one of the great features of travel photography?)

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In Line (Psycoselfie)

Milan (Italy). The title can be interpreted horizontally and vertically… Being in line is boring, but when there’s such an interesting wall in front of you, time can be used in a better way. This is what I did yesterday, waiting to enter at the MUDEC (Museo delle Culture) in Milan. It’s a selfie, something I do not like to do: but it’s a bit psychedelic, which makes not so useless. Just for fun. Bye.

Milano. Il titolo può essere letto orizzontalmente ma anche verticalmente… essere in coda è noioso, ma quando davanti a te c’è un muro così interessante, il tempo può essere utilizzato meglio. Questa l’ho fatta ieri, aspettando di entrare al MUDEC (Museo delle Culture) di Milano. E’ un selfie, qualcosa che non amo fare: ma è un po’ psichedelico, cosa che lo rende meno inutile. Così, per divertirsi. Ciao.


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Turkish Coffee

Istanbul (Turkey). Turkish Coffee (Turk Kahvesi) is not simply “a coffee”… it’s a tradition, it’s a religion, it’s a ritual made of moments and that go well beyond simply the gesture of “drinking a coffee”. You have to wait, because when it comes served on your table it’s too hot. You have to drink it carefully, otherwise your mouth will be filled by the sandy coffee powder. You have to read its ground, so that you can learn more about your future and take the right decisions. For me – Italian – coffee is no more only “espresso”. A good Turk Kahvesi is a perfect boost to start the day!

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Tour(s) Eiffel

Paris (France). One (of the many) vendors of miniaturized Tour Eiffel’s souvenir, on the Esplanade du Trocadero.

When I’m in Paris and I  have some time to spend, I like coming here: it’s full of tourists shooting photos in absurd positions – the most popular uses the perspective to show them keeping the top of the Tour Eiffel with a hand – and it is a nice “piece of world”.

To shoot this photo I used a Ricoh GR. It’s a great camera, I will never get tired of repeating it!

Parigi (Francia). Uno dei tanti venditori di souvenir della Torre Eiffel sulla Esplanade du Trocadero.

Quando sono a Parigi e ho un po’ di tempo da spendere, mi piace venire qui: è pieno di turisti che scattano foto in posizioni assurde – la più comune utilizza la prospettiva per dare l’idea che tengano la Torre Eiffel con una mano – ed è un divertente “pezzo di mondo”.

Per scattare questa foto ho utilizzato la Ricoh GR. E’ una gran macchina fotografica, non mi stancherò mai di ripeterlo!


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Cross Wind Landing in Venice

Venice (Italy). Another landing at Venice – VCE Marco Polo Airport. This time with a cross wind making the flight a bit turbulent, but also drawing beautiful wakes on the lagoon’s water. The complete set of my landings in Venice is here (every time a new experience).

Venezia (Italia). Un altro atterraggio all’aeroporto Marco Polo di Venezia (VCE). Questa volta con un vento trasversale che ha reso il volo un po’ turbolento, ma che ha anche disegnato bellissime scie sull’acqua della laguna. Qui c’è l’intera serie di atterraggi all’aeroporto di Venezia (ogni volta un’esperienza diversa).


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