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05 March 2011

Let the Memories Begin

I don't like celeb portraits. I think they're artsy, inventive and technically perfect, but they don't add up anything to what I  already see in magazines. To me, photography has to crystallize Joseph Conrad's quoted goal as a writer: "My task which I am trying to achieve is, by the power of the written word, to make you hear, to make you feel-it is, above all, to make you see. That-and no more, and it is everything." (credits) So I find some beauty in those portraits,  but I keep feeling my senses more alert in front of social or nature photographs. It's in front of them that I stand numbless in admiration the more.

I can't say that I'm not interested in the highly stylized and priviliged people and their opulent worlds. There's a bit of obsession of celeb people in me too. I keep preferring paparazzi's shots to David Lachapelle or Helmut Newton talents, just to name a few, famous photographers wo have captured the hearts and minds and who developped their photography style into a form of art.

It may sound balsphemy to many of you, I know, but to me paparazzi are practitioners of a global pop art, which collides obsession with celebs to a tradition of street photography.  And all this gives us the golden opportunity to see famous people in their everyday natural scenarios, looking more spontaneous. Least but not last, paparazzi don't have it easy. The objects of their lenses hate them and they have to be more inventive.

There's a serie of portraits that I admire, though: the shots done by Annie Liebovitz  for the Disney Parks promotional campaign. It's called the Dinsey Dream Portraits serie, in which some celebrities pose as iconic Disney characters with the most elaborate costumes and sets, reigniting my love of fairy tales, myths and fables. The  serie is a great example of how universal these ideals are, thus the use of megastars is amply appropriate here. 

 Queen Latifah as Ursula from The Little Mermaid.

Olivia Wilde as the Evil Queen, Alec Baldwin as the spirit of the magic mirror from Snow White

You can see the whole photoshooting here, with some candids of behind the scene too.

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