I started photographing while I was still a penniless student. I dug into the second-hand market, buying and selling a large number of different digital cameras, always chasing the urge of being surrounded by technology of quality.
At the same time, reading about the great photographers of the past and looking at their shots, I also started to approach the world of analog photography.
At that time, the cheapest way I found to do it was to buy a defective Nikon F80 for 20€ and match it with an old 50mm. I then started developing the black and white film I was shooting myself and soon decided to expand my family of analog cameras with a Yashica MAT-124, a twin-lens 6×6.
Then, beginning my photo-reporter work, I was forced to buy a Canon Full Frame kit and the old F80 was placed in the closet and forgotten. After a few years, my involvement with photography changed again. I no longer shoot for professional purposes, and quit photography as a job. This allowed me to return to shooting just for myself, and most importantly it led me to reflect on what my needs are, and what kind of relationship I have with the medium I hold in my hands.
That’s how my path of “photographic detoxification” began.
I no longer found myself sharing the direction dictated by the photographic market and by many professional, perhaps mainstream photography approaches. I no longer prescribed to the exasperating search for sharpness, the need for many programmable buttons, endless settings in complex menus and so on… I was only looking for simplicity, a shooting technique with very few, minimalistic steps.
The shift happened drastically: In a few weeks, I sold everything I had. first the lenses, then the bodies, until I wasn’t left with any kind of gear.
It hadn’t been a week since I got rid of the last piece of gear when I received a phone call from my roommates who told me to prepare the backpack that we were about to leave for a 10-day trip to Eastern Europe. Packing my stuff, I thought about how I wasn’t comfortable leaving with only my mobile phone to take pictures.
Then, while looking for the tent at the bottom of the closet I found the old F80 covered with dust still with its 50mm mounted. I took the opportunity to give it back a new life and I threw it in the backpack along with 3 rolls of film.
The trip was absolutely incredible and these 5 shots are a small part of the results to which my journey to a new photographic simplicity has brought me!