Andy Fortini is a 25 year old photographer/lurker from Perth, Western Australia. He is working on a couple of little book projects with no deadline.
Hello. I'm Andy Fortini, a 25 year old photographer/lurker from Perth, Western Australia. Growing up riding bmx I would always geek out at the photos in bmx and skateboarding magazines. I'd be peering into every detail, foreground to background sucking in as much detail as my eyeballs could take.
When I first got my hands on a camera initially I just wanted to take photos of my friends riding their bikes. We'd be missioning about having the time of our lives and felt the need to document it for some reason.
Even if no one else would ever see the photos it felt important to do it just for myself to have a record of such a significant part of my life. After stumbling upon a show of roger ballen's work I realized the immense impact a photo can have on someone. I learnt from looking at those pictures that a well made photograph has the power to firmly grab hold of a viewers frontal lobe and not let go.
As far as any process goes all I try to do is bring my camera with me everywhere I go. It's fully tangled with my life at this point. Those around me and the places I find myself are the subjects Ill seek out in an effort to share some little moment I found significant. Someone much smarter than me once said “shoot what you know”. So I do, missions jumping fences to drain half empty swimming pools, excursions through thrashed out, destitute buildings, wasted nights and hung over mornings with friends, the random freaks I tend to cross paths with and the quiet moments of silence shared with friends and lovers.
When It comes to taking photos of friends it's important that they trust you. Just because they are sharing a moment with you it doesn't mean they want the photo of that moment shared with the world. When I'm photographing my friends it's documenting their way through life and it's intersections with mine. Sometimes it's happy other times it's more sombre and intimate. It's important that if they trust you enough open up to your camera that you don't violate that trust. The same goes for photographing strangers too I guess but honestly I go for discretion. If that doesn't work a friendly smile goes a long way even if you can't understand the language they are yelling at you in.
Most of the stuff I'm shooting now is with a voigtlander r2a. It's got just enough electronics to be useful while keeping pretty solid and simple. I develop the film in my laundry and have gotten pretty quick and efficient as time has gone on. I'm a sucker for lurking camera forums and nerding out on specs and particulars of all sorts of cameras so I do try and keep my distance from ebay. I've tried and loved many different camera set ups, all of them have their own merits but G.A.S is a real thing so I try to spend money on film and developer rather than bodies and lenses.
I normally scan the negatives with a macro lens and a digital camera. It took a bit of experimenting to get the results I was after with the macro setup but I'm stoked with what I can get now. No fancy post production either, just good quality ilford films and a few exposure tweaks and I'm done. I recently got my hands on one of those olympus m5 II and have been using it for a bit of macro and wildlife stuff while I've been in South Africa. Rather excited to try out its fancy 60mp high res mode to scan some film
Lately I've been working with a group of amazingly talented miscrients on a bmx magazine here in Australia. With the demise of print media offering the kids nothing but burnt out frontal lobes from the endlessly scrolling bowels of the internet we figured we'd make an effort to help.
Nothing's Wrong was born and it circulates it's way through Australian bike shops and amongst the hands and pockets of the Australian bmx scene. With each issue filled with entertaining dribble, incredible photos and art work filling every crevasse it's a treat to work on something so awesome.
In the works are a couple little book projects. One is going to be a collection of photos from the adventures had lurking around looking for stuff to ride. Not just riding photos but other special little moments that add up to make a life long passion. The other will hopefully be a small collection of photos from my travels to South Africa the last few years.
It's a crazy place, I'm so far from even beginning to understand it but I'm trying. Neither of them have a deadline, I don't want to rush anything, I'd rather wait until I had a selection of photos I really felt were a powerful set of images than rush out something I'll inevitably be embarrassed of in years to come. In the meantime I'll just be shooting whatever I come across and having as much fun as I can along the way.
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