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Napoli and its people have given me a new perspective on what it really means to live

Stefano Ruggiero is a digital and film photographer based in Napoli, Italy, where he has been shooting for the last four years.

His photography took off when he decided to start shooting with film and interacting with the subjects he saw each day in a more personal and open way. “I have always had a complicated relationship with my city, despite its beauty. In a way, I felt caged. Photography allowed me to break out of this shell. It was this new experience that brought me joy, peace and excitement.”

Napoli and its people have given him a new perspective on what it really means to live here and have allowed him to see the world differently. “I love the contrast that this city creates. Dynamic, energetic moments alternate with moments of pure calm. There is so much beauty in depicting everyday life in a very precise way.”

Photographing Naples forces the viewer to analyse a simple scene, only to discover that even these mundane moments have small elements and emotions in them that only the South can convey. “This is where analogue photography has allowed me to experience the city to the fullest. I honestly think it is one of the best ways to experience Napoli.”

For Stefano digital is cold, fast and lacks that unique, creative spark, whereas analogue photography costs time and money and you can’t make many mistakes. “There is chaos and imperfections that make each photo unique.  You have to slow down, observe the scene and decide how, when and what to photograph. It is in those moments that you can turn around and observe the place and its people.”

Stefano has vowed to grow as an artist and to photograph the everyday monotonous and exciting moments that pass him each day on the street. “I have been working on a photo book for about 3 years, mostly made on film. I want to show people what it means to live in Napoli under every nuance.”

His love for this city and photography has grown hand in hand and it is something that he is sure will continue to grow in the future. “Photography made me love Napoli and Napoli made me love photography.” We sit down with Stefano to learn more about his beautiful story.

Naples has so much to offer, on every level and especially on the human one.

It is important to get to know the person you are photographing, establish a relationship with them, and be friendly. Getting to know these people has allowed me to have a different relationship with photography. It has allowed me to feel empathy toward the subject and see them primarily as a human being, not just a subject to be photographed on the fly. 

Naples is a unique city. I was born and raised here and during my adolescence, I saw it as a place to escape from, since I focused mostly on its negative aspects. I was wrong and I owe this to photography.

Naples has so much to offer, on every level and especially on a human one. I have endless memories here: The sea, the welcoming people, their way of perceiving life.

It is obvious that Naples has several problems, like any other city, but I consider it a place without an equal. I hope tourists can experience it to the fullest.

Go there and experience everything you can.

Southern Italy is something completely unique. It can be described as a multitude of cultural deposits. Each southern region has its own history and traditions that deserve to be known.

Some places that are really alluring are the Amalfi coast, the historic centre of Naples, the villages of Calabria, and the lands of Apulia and Sicily. It is impossible to mention them all, and I cannot give precise advice on what to visit and what to do.

The only thing I can suggest is to experience these places. Go there and experience everything you can. Get to know the people, and traditions, and respect the roads you walk on. 

represent the reality of Naples

I usually get most of my inspiration simply by getting out of the house and taking pictures. But I admit that there are several photographers from southern Italy and especially Naples who can capture the south in a wonderful way. Names like Ciro Pipoli or Robbie Mcintosh.

There are also other photographers who can convey unique emotions such as Joe Greer, Matt Day, Willem Verbeeck, and obvious masters of photography such as Steve McCurry and Sebastião Salgado. 

This year will be complicated and full of professional challenges. I am contemplating moving on to another city or country towards the end of the year and completing a few projects.

I would like to visit Morocco to get to know the locals and photograph what I think is a completely unique place. I am also planning to publish a book this year, but I want to keep shooting and working on it to represent the reality of Naples as best I can. However Long It Takes.

All our thanks to the humble and wonderful gentleman that is Stefano Ruggiero

You can follow his work on social media here.

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