Riccardo Spatolisano

Portrait | Last Updated: February 9, 2021

Everything starts from the need to go towards the infinite and beyond… to go beyond the limits that existence offers us.

Especially, beyond what we see… being able to somehow cross the hurdles and barriers that we set to protect ourselves from others – mainly from who is in front of us.

Photography is, first of all, a journey that starts from my skin, with the intention to reach out to the other person; to release them from hiding and free them from the invisible cages that surround them.

Photography is a celebration of a shared experience between me and the subject.

It all starts with perceptions, with how we influence and let ourselves be conditioned by the world around us.

Not the goal but the path to get there.

Through my images I try to bring people home – to the place where they started, retracing the path to find the way back.

The photographs I take are specially printed in very large formats and placed in front of the subject.

This process obliges the subject to go through a process of acceptance of self.

Always projected to look out, we forget that everything starts from the inside, from our background, from who we are, from our deepest desires.

Everything we have is already within us.

This is my direction, where I feel projected and attracted at the same time.

My photography is as essential and sober as it wants my relationship with the other to be, almost raw, impetuous, sometimes brazen.

No half measure… all or nothing… like the last acts of a poker game… all-in.

My equipment must satisfy this feeling.

My brand is Fujifilm.

I divide between series X (APS-C) and GFX (medium and large format), in relation to my final goal.

Fujifilm X100F: it is one of my favorites, since its first appearance on the market; a do-all machine that I always carry with me. Versatile and of the highest quality, I use it mainly for the portrait set.

Its Fujifilm 23mm f/2 lens is perfect for every situation.

Fujifilm X-T3: it is the ideal machine for both photographs and video.

In its 4th release, it really achieves important goals in every aspect.

I use it mainly for outside combined with the Fujifilm 56mm f/1.2 and the Fujifilm 23mm f/1.4. As an intermediate lens, I have a Mitakon 35mm f/0.95 (manual), where its important diaphragm aperture allows it to gain not only brightness but also depth of field.

Each of these lenses, in its own way, is part of my vision, of how my eye sees when I compose an image; often I don’t even feel like I need to frame in the viewfinder to know what the result will be.

In the studio, the medium format becomes the master of the scene.

The yield of large sizes always fascinated me.

The very shallow depth of field makes this format the best for what I intend to emphasize.

Portraits made in medium and large format are able to project you into the image, straight to the heart of the message.

Fujifilm GFX 50S: the first of its kind, perfectly interprets the legacy left by the analog medium format. I often use it with the Fujifilm XF 63mm f/2.8 and Fujifilm GF 110mm f/2.

Fujifilm GFX 100: the latest addition to Fujifilm, it definitely marks the success of this bet in which the Japanese company has invested. Right now I can’t use anything else. I am completely bewitched by the tonal richness and density of details. The files it produces are really nice to work with.

Fujifilm GF 110 f/2: lens of extraordinary beauty, it is the lens I use the most in portrait photography. A completely open diaphragm is very complicated to use due to the very small focal planes, but its yield exceeds all expectations.

Fujifilm GF 63 f/2.8: when I need more space within the frame it is the lens I choose. It’s balanced and light at the same time. For the full-length portrait, it is unsurpassed.

Godox SL60W: normally in outdoor shoots and in some “ambient” situations I work with natural light, while in the studio I love very much the continuous light of LED projectors, in particular Godox SL60W, the SL200W‘s younger sister that I often use in combination.

I love light in all its forms and everything that can somehow modify it, transform it and distort it, so I often use modifiers, lenses and prisms.

I am very photosensitive and I always need with me my wooden sunglasses.

When for extreme practicality I can’t bring the equipment with me, iPhone XR becomes a very useful tool.

Last but not least, POCKET SIMON which I use to maintain concentration or to amuse my mind.

www.riccardospatolisano.com | @riccardo.spatolisano

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  1. Stranger on August 22, 2020 at 11:23 pm

    so the 23mm f2 lens is perfect, but you use the 1.4 instead?

  2. Riccardo on September 30, 2019 at 8:20 pm

    A great honor to be part of this group … thanks

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