Hi my name is Dennis Berti and I’m a documentary wedding photographer. I live and work in Cabo San Lucas Mexico but I’m originally from Italy.
I have had cameras in my hands since when I was 17 years old, when I discovered for the first time the power and the huge world of photography. Since then it’s been a continuous journey trying, experimenting, discovering etc etc. Since 2006 I’m in the wedding world shooting primary in Mexico, USA and Italy.
Street photography became another true passion since 2013 when I bought my first digital mirrorless camera: the Fujifilm X100S. I was looking for a small, affordable, silent camera but with a great performance, and browsing in the web I found the perfect match. Since then I always carry a camera with me to shoot whatever I see and takes my attention. I’m a fanatic of strong light. I love to deal with highlights and deep shadows.
I always shoot with my eyes, trying to avoid strange lines cutting people’s bodies or continuously moving my head and composing even when I don’t carry a camera: this is the photographer curse I know, but it feels good!
Now I’m using two great tools for my daily training of my street photography – yes daily because I understand that shooting a lot of street photography can drastically help the way you see the world and of course make you a better wedding photographer too which is my primary job.
First of all my Ricoh GR. This little jewel is an amazing camera. It looks like it was designed specifically for professional street photographers, seriously. It’s just a point & shoot camera, no big deal but with an huge sensor, and incredible sharp, super silent and cheap. But what I like best about this camera is the possibility to customize it, to assign specific functions to the many buttons.
I’m sure that if I give my camera to another Ricoh GR user he/she will be not confortable using it just because the way I personalized the camera – I messed up all the standard set up haha.
I used to shoot in Raw Monochrome because I adore to think and to compose using the black & white preview. I carry two extra batteries, the original one coming with the camera and other two generic ones (and cheaper). Considering that the Ricoh GR Raw file is about 15Mb I don’t have problem about storage if I use a pretty basic San Disk 32Gb card – I could shot 2,000 raw files. But just in case something happens to my card, I always bring with me another one.
The next device is a classic iPhone 5s. I discovered a few months ago that not only the standard camera has the possibility to take the photos using the original Apple EarPods as remote control, but also other amazing Apps. Amongst the apps, ProCamera which is in my opinion the fastest and most customizable app to take pictures with a phone, and the super nice Hipstamatic, completely automatic but super fast.
Using the EarPods is the perfect trick for me to be unnoticed by people, while the world is moving around me. I always listen to good and inspiring music, trying to capture the decisive moment.
Being in another state of mind when I’m shooting I always requires music, as I said, as well as a little and quick snack when you have a “hunger attack” and water of course. If I’m not inspired or the light is not as I was expecting, I take a break, I sit down, I read my actual book, I eat a few peanuts and once everything works again, I’m ready to shoot and to chase.
When I decide to go out and just shoot, usually I dedicate at least three-four hours to be sure I can quit the shooting with at least one great photograph but I might have more luck, or to be in the right moment at the right time and come back home with more than one great shot. I highly believe in the Ansel Adam’s quote: “Twelve significant photographs in any one year is a good crop.”
In my bag I always need:
1) Sunglasses – I never shoot without them. First because I prefer to see the world in the darkest way to pay more attention to the highlights and then because people can’t see where my eyes are looking, very helpful when you are shooting with EarPods.
2) Moleskine notebook – for my ideas, work, notes and whatever is passing trough my head
3) Galatine candy, my favorite Italian candy
4) My multifunction Spartan Economy Victorinox knife. I like to find something to do (useful or stupid I don’t care) with this tool in my daily life as MacGyver does :-)
5) My good luck charm Dino, a small dinosaur that help me when a great composition is not enough and I need more luck!