Making up the second half of our TEN S3 duo for May 2014 is Milan-based fashion photographer, Lucia Giacani.

Lucia has shot for some of the world’s most famous and renowned fashion magazines and brands including Harrods, Vogue Pelle and Italian Glamour. Describing her creative influences as being characteristically feminine she also tries to implement a part of herself in all her photography work.

We spoke to Lucia to find out more about background, her work, and being a part of Fotolia’s TEN Collection

Fotolia: Hello, Lucia! Tell us about yourself and your background…

Lucia Giacani

Lucia Giacani

LG: Having arrived in Milan seven years ago with no contacts I soon had the opportunity to work with a series of independent magazines that helped me build an interesting body of work for my portfolio including Vogue Pelle, Vogue Gioielli, and Vogue Accessory.

After appearing in these publications jobs started to come in from outside Italy, including London, Dubai, and Hong Kong. Last year I was pleased to shoot a few times for Harrods magazine, and recently I’ve been shooting with Italian Glamour.

I am from a small medieval town in the centre of Italy, called Jesi. Photography was a hobby of my dad’s, and even though I am the youngest in the family I was the only one to have shown an interest.

I received a compact automatic camera as a present for my First Holy Communion and from that point I starting experimenting with photography.

What really defined my photographic development (pun intended) was during my teenage years, I used to go out to abandoned places around Jesi to shoot with friends whilst dressing up. Then I moved away to study languages in Bologna, then industrial design in Rome where I took a black and white photography night school course in Trastevere.

After finishing my studies I moved back to Jesi where I worked part-time in a commercial photo studio.

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Fo: How would you define your style?

LG: My creative vision is not typically Italian, although I think it is typically feminine. I try to represent the inside feelings of myself in certain periods of my life and I always try to put “myself” into the shoots. As such I think that you can see a sense of maturity and progression in my work. A common link in all my photos is surrealism and the unconscious.

Fo: What are your influences?

LG: Symbolism, Expressionism, and Surrealism. But also Francesca Woodman, Steven Klein, and Tim Walker.

Fo: Have your origin and the culture of your country influenced you? How?

LG: Unfortunately there are a lot of things wrong with Italy: corruption, nepotism and bureaucracy are the order of the day.  Fortunately however ‘culture’ is not seen to be one of them. Growing up in one country can bind you to a certain way of thinking, I like to think that Italy has given me good taste, but also the need and desire, to fight, to take nothing for granted, to be determined and tenacious.

Fo: In your opinion, what are the qualities required for a photographer / designer?

LG: Creativity, innovation, and tenacity.

The TEN Project

Lucia Giacani and MatCloud

Lucia Giacani and MatCloud

Fo: Do you usually work as part of a pair, as in this project?

LG: Yes with a stylist, art director or magazine director and even with clients sometimes. However, my team can be large, up to 15 people sometimes. The work and creativity comes from someone else and me bouncing ideas around.

Fo: What messages, emotions or ideas did you intend to convey through your creation? And what was the motivation behind this choice?

LG: The theme represents for me a way to express the bizarre and extreme lifestyle choices that have taken on quasi-religious even puritanical undertones in our society. Where recycling is the new Catholicism; where if you smoke in public you are considered some sort of serial killer; where you pay to torture yourself in gyms.

Before, the absolution of your sins through confession or prayer was enough to keep you “clean inside”; now we are living in a world where even our personal interior is up for judgement.

This project underlines the next step, in a culture where you are what you eat.  The protagonist in my works suffers, like a martyr, showing her perfectly clean organs to the world like a badge or medal of piety, a sacred heart.

Working Methods

Fo: What are your preferred or required tools or equipment?

LG: I like to use Canon cameras and Adobe Photoshop.

Fo: Can you describe your usual work methods in a few lines?

LG: Develop an idea, sketch a layout, find the best team. Shoot. Post-production, send work.

Fo: Have your tools and  work method been different for TEN ? If so, how?

LG: Yes, normally I wouldn’t have such extreme post-production.

Fo: What tips and tricks do you use most often when working?

LG: My trick is having a great team and a clear idea throughout the process.

Fo: Thank you, Lucia.

Find out more about Lucia on her website and her Behance portfolio