10 minutes with Saverio Truglia

Interviews with Photographers October 18, 2011 9:13 am

When did you first know that you wanted to be a photographer? Did you have an ‘aha’ moment when you knew that this is what you had to do?


I enrolled in art school to study graphic design but only from a lack of understanding for what graphic design really was. Fortunately the first year for every major was the same course work, so I lost no ground when I saw a show of 20×24 color Polaroid portraits and instantly changed my major to photography.  Those big, shallow depth of field portraits really sucked me in you know, and everything from that point on was about making pictures of people for me.

 

Saverio Truglia

Saverio Truglia

Saverio Truglia

Saverio Truglia

 

For your more conceptual shoots, whats the normal process for you, from getting the assignment to being on set?

More and more I get assignments with very open ended parameters.  My clients are very often asking me to come up with the solution . This is challenging as there are sometimes no limits. I have to ask a lot of questions to get to what’s important to them. I believe I’m most creative with some parameters, so I decide on a mini story that all my ideas must fall into.  The story usually aligns with something in my gut that I want to try visually. Like I get an assignment to shoot some pictures for a fashion accessory company. I think, I’d like to make some very fast looking, angular pictures so the story becomes about a woman who is “getting the hell away.” From that I now know what’s in the character’s head, and my ideas are now about this motivation of hers. It’s just a device to get me started so the pictures I eventually make are surprising and unexpected to me.

 

Saverio Truglia

Saverio Truglia

Saverio Truglia

 

How do you get your subjects – especially the camera shy ones, or those concerned that they might look silly – to relax and work with you?

It’s about building a rapport very quickly. I work rather fast and shoot a lot so before they know it, we’ve begun the shoot.  Many of my subjects are not comfortable in front of a camera. Like in life, they feel there’s  just so much pressure to look good.  I have a very easy going demeanor and sometimes say silly or inappropriate things when on set, which might make them know I’m not full of myself. I also make sure my subjects feel honored when they’re with me.  When people know you are grateful for them, they let go and trust you.  Very often I will wrap a shoot and maybe share some pictures with the subject only to ask them for another 15-30 minutes. This is usually the time we both let go and make the best pictures together because we now respect each other.

 

Saverio Truglia

Saverio Truglia

Saverio Truglia

 

If you could go back 10 years and give yourself advice, what would it be?

I’d probably have done some assisting or met more people in the industry before starting out. I was kind of an impulsive entrepreneur.  I got a gut feeling about where I wanted to  go in photography and just begin without looking around first.  Maybe that was to my advantage. Who knows.

 

Saverio Truglia

Saverio Truglia

Saverio Truglia

 

Any words of wisdom for the up and comers?

 

Stay inspired and trust your instincts. This sounds easier to do than it is.  Remember  what you were fascinated by as a child and find a place for those fascinations in what you do today. Don’t bother to compare yourself to anyone else. Keep working for the joy of it and your lifelong voice should emerge. 

 

(Saverio is based in Chicago. See more of his work, here.)

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