The lotus flower is a very ancient symbol, it represents the ability to maintain pureness and beauty even in the mud, where it blooms and grows. Generally it's the emblem of those who manage to keep themselves uncontaminated among the adversities of the world.
The kunoichis (female ninja warriors whose name comes from the three kanas that compose the kanji 女, "woman") are the embodiment of the lotus and of all of its contrasts, in terms of strenght, elegance, grace and purity, for which, as a woman does, it's able to flourish even in the hostilities.
Photographer: Flavio Muriana @flaviomuri Model: Alba Metushi @albalou7 Dress: Isa Giovannozzi @d.isagio Makeup Artist: Alice Moschini @alicemoschini_mua Earrings: Iro Paper Jewels @iro_paper_jewels
To begin, can you please give us a little intro as to what motivated you to become a photographer?
First of all, thank you for the opportunity to talk about my work! I started to enjoy photography a few years ago, working as a bartender in an art gallery here in Rome, but i truly realized how powerful photography is when i saw a Henry Cartier-Bresson exhibit, and i immediately fell in love with this form of art, and (as i do with everything i find interesting) i started making it my own, taking my own pictures, at first with a smartphone, then i bought my first camera.
Later on, when i had a terribile car accident, i realized that i wanted to make of my life something worth living for, and i thought that it would be great to do something i love as a job. So i took courage, and i began to walk the path of photography as a full time experience, and i can say it's one of the best choices made in my life so far
We admire the exquisite level of detail in all your works. Does your creative process start from a certain image in your mind, or do you seek inspiration as you progress?
I do spend most of my time creating mental scenarios and i try then to set the ground in order to bring it into the real world as best as i can, but this is just the very first step of my creative process, and the final product is in facts the result of many improvements and contaminations
What are the technical challenges of studio photography and how did you overcome them?
Switching constantly from studio to outdoor shootings, i can say that lighting is the most challenging thing in photography. I spend a great amount of time looking for the right setting to enhance the subject, and since obtaining a smooth and soft effect isn't always easy, that's when post-production comes in handy
You are a creative mind with an exceptional eye for detail, are you able to talk us through your process when creating your art?
I guess it all starts with the need of communicating something and not knowing another way of doing it aside from photography (but that's valid for all the forms of art), then i start looking for a model and for props that fit with this idea, then for a location that helps bring in some magical atmospheres. I also love to get in the shots i take the psychological factor, the inner beauty and the temper of the model, that's what makes people unique and truly beautiful to me
How has photography influenced you as a person and what do you love most about being a photographer?
As a former psychology student, i like to see every experience i make something that enriches me, and photography is not excluded. Every step i take, every picture i take is a step forward, even the wrong ones. Everything's a lesson, it's up to us to take the best from what comes in our life, and photography gave me the chance to know people better, in an intimate way too, and more importantly, to know myself better, and that's what i love the most
What do you look for in a creative team? What key skills are you looking for to ensure you are picking the best artists to work with?
I love to join forces with people who like to dare, who don't care to be different, always bringing on the table their attitude, their colors, their "light". If i have to mention someone who represents all of this, i would mention the stylist i usually work with, she's the best person i could have ever met
What would be your tips/advice to models and photographers looking to expand their portfolio?
Don't be scared of doing, even if you think it won't help, what matters the most is to have fun with what you do, always, because it's better to do and learn something new, than not doing at all
What is your dream in terms of your career?
If i have to choose one thing, is to have fun. I don't think that an high economical income alone can make you happy while, on the other hand, doing what you love and loving what you do is the key to a satisfying life
In your opinion, is it fair to alter reality by adjusting images in post-production? And what do you think it delivers in the final image?
Absolutely, i think that every creative possibilities we have bring to endless new combinations and endless new ways of creating. Although i think it's not always "the more the merrier", sometimes simple things are the best option, it's just a matter of knowing what to do with what you have
What projects are you working on next, and what are your goals for the future?
I'm currently working as stage photographer, and i can't wait to bring what i'm learning here in my future shootings, i love fashion and portrait photography, and i hope to do this for all my life
Where can we see more of your works and get connected with you?
I share all my works on my Instagram page, @phlaviomuri, and on my web portfolio, flaviomurianamr.myportfolio.com, feel free to write me, even for a little chat! I'm always in for stimulating conversations!
Thank you again for giving me the chance to talk!