Who I Am

Francesco Fanti

Who I Am

Landscape and Travel Photographer

Photography is the art of finding extraordinary things in ordinary places

What would I tell you about me? Well, I would tell you about viewfinders, emotions, waits, magic, hope and study: these are the key words of my life and when I metabolised them and understood them deeply, I had the courage to open my backpack, take out my camera and combine them all in a shot.

This is how I transformed my unbridled love for nature, its colours, sounds and for the endless emotions a landscape can give, into my passion for photography, which I have had for many years now.

Of course I studied … I studied all technical, theoretical and practical notions about the world of photography, but first and foremost, I studied myself, exploring my feelings deep inside, in an intimate loneliness, and I thus learnt to socialise with time, especially with the time of waits: I studied that secret part that a starry night, a flowery meadow, a mountain softly covered with snow were able to arouse inside me, and as soon as I was able to capture that part through the viewfinder, it inspired my breaths and the magic I was looking for in my life, and also inspired those who then admired my shots; it is the emotion of a place that connects who is there physically with who observes it through a picture.

Realizing that I was able to do this, that is, arousing emotions through a shot, was the main input for me to give up everything else and finally join myself and that world I had been watching from the outside throughout my life, silent and composed, and that all of a sudden seemed to have turned into a wave: a world that wanted to communicate in a wordless language and rather used emotional magic as a surfboard on the blue water glittered with the first stars of the night.

And while waiting there, alone, with a gentle wind caressing my face, surrounded by that dark sky, all the rest outside me calmed down. Haunted by unreality and enchanted by beauty, I listened to the world. A world that took me by hand and guided me in my journeys to crystallise a moment of time and turn it into an eternal instant, and to combine a set of feelings that could suddenly be shared with whoever was willing to be inspired by them.

I was there ... on the edge, after long walks and climbs, sometimes even a little risky, waiting for the poetry of a unique moment I had learnt to capture ... I was there ... and hopeful.

Hope always leads farther than fear, and just as hope stably takes root in the rocks, I never gave up and kept on searching, waiting, and shooting: at a time when life often oppresses us, an instant can be enough to save me and make me happy.

And when I learnt to do this through photography, I wanted to start teaching it. And to those who ask me “why should I take a course in photography?”, my answer is that “being able to watch the outside world is not enough, it is also necessary to go beyond our visual experience, and this is what I have learnt to do over all these years, with so much patience and dedication”.

Working as a photographer is an extraordinary journey!

Why do I fall in love with landscape photography every day?

One day I gave a camera as a present to a girl who then became my life partner, and we went out to try it, in the territories where we have always lived, made up of beloved hills plunged into nature. That day, while I was holding that device in my hands, I felt a special emotion. I tried to shot some photographs to portrait my dog and my girlfriend, and of course pointing the viewfinder on the subjects I love makes me feel complete … but then I started to point the viewfinder on the compositional nature I could see around me and I felt I was myself, almost as if I was completely unveiled, with all my missing pieces, and also with my doubts on the future and on the type of man I would really become in life. I hold a degree in Economy and Finance but … Would I have ever worked in that field, made up of accounts, budget analyses, financial statements? After some twenty fine shots, plunged into my hills, I asked this question to myself.

I just felt good that day and I felt good whenever I took the camera in my hands, started walking and stopped somewhere in the search for new emotions. Sometimes I jogged a little to capture a particular moment in a sunny day, sometimes I spent my time waiting for the blue hour, enjoying the beauty of nature, building upon the thoughts it inspired, and sometimes I found myself hiking in places I would not have otherwise discovered, in the world outside but also inside myself, or more simply I realised that all that I had around me, where I had been living throughout my life, could be seen with different framings, lights, contrasts and eyes. 

Photography has not changed me: through capturing moments and seeing harmony in the compositions I realise, I discover what I have always been and I can look at and listen to it. At some point in my life, this stimulating contact between the nature of the outside landscape and the intimate part inside me allows all the rest to evolve.

This is the beginning of the story of my being alive that I want to tell you, through the colours and contrasts of my shots: it is the story of a dream, the dream of bringing this passion to a higher level, through the continued theoretical and practical study of portrait techniques, and finally making it my job. A job that I now love so much and that continuously fuels my desire to live on this wonderful planet, the Earth.

When a dream comes true, everything changes: habits, lifestyles, and thoughts.

My hills too had suddenly changed, they were no longer my hills.

They were lush hills, wet after the rain that had just fallen, and when I sensed that the sun was ready to bless them again, I went out with my camera and I slowly climbed up those hills, breathing that scent that the rain-wet ground typically releases when the sun casts its first rays again. I had the honour of experiencing and portraying those hills that belonged to the whole world, to the whole humanity.

Support art in all its facets

If you love my work and my art please consider supporting me on Patreon to allow me to carry on this creative dream!

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