Once upon a time, in a world made of images, there was a photographer
Hi, Martina, let’s start with the most classic question just to break the ice. Who are you and what do you do?
Hi, I’m Martina Mariotti, I live in Rome and I’m a photographer. I work the fashion sector, I do editorials, lookbooks and all the rest. I manage to reserve myself time to do my own personal projects which, in the end, are those that represent me the most.
Why do people choose photography as a means to say something? In your opinion, what does this art manage to express that others can’t?
Photography is an extension of ourselves. It can release many emotions which are not always the same and everybody can see what they choose. Through photos we can express our emotional state, fears and dreams. It’s a free and complete art.
Something that appears frequently in your shots is the fairytale element. There is always a dreamy yet unsettling atmosphere, like in the fairytale when the princess and the evil witch appear at the same time. Do you recognize this aspect as your own style?
Yes, in my shots this contrasting atmosphere is frequent. In each of us there is a part of light and a part of darkness and through my photos, I try to tell of these. I’m a person that very often closes herself in her own world which is, on times, dreamy. It seems that you can tell this emotional state from my images.
Talking of your photos, there is an element that regularly comes back: women. Female characters are very present in your photographs. Do you believe that they adapt better to your style of photography or is there another reason?
I prefer the female form because I find that it best represents that which I want to tell. Women have many nuances to their eyes, their bodies and their movements and for what is my style, fairytale and mysterious, they are perfect.
At this point we would like you to summarize that which we have said so far choosing just one photo, but one which represents you.
I chose this image because it unites my dreamy style and that which I do, in other words, the fashion world. This photo presents both elements seeing as it is from an editorial of which I was the art director. This means that I was able to impose my fairytale style on the fashion world.
When you work on a project, what are the fundamental steps? For example, who chooses the location and the clothes?
Starting from a study and varied research you begin to form a moodboard of what you want to achieve which then goes on to be developed with the other members of the team: make-up artists, hair dressers and stylists. Very often I choose the locations after having checked out various sites. Whereas for the clothes, I trust in designers or stylists who find for me the most suitable clothes. For the best results during the shooting it is essential that behind everything there is optimum team work.
How much do personal interests weigh on the construction of ones personal style? Your shots bring to mind some books from famous illustrators such as Nicoletta Ceccoli and Mark Ryden. Have you ever been inspired by books, films or anything else?
Personal interests weigh a lot on the construction of a personal style precisely because they express what you are and that which, fundamentally, you like the most. Yes, in the past I have been inspired by films. I love the atmosphere that Sophia Coppola manages to create and the tones of the colours that Wes Craven uses.
Our chat finishes here with two final questions. Why is photography beautiful? Can you give us a negative aspect?
Photography captures everything, moments, emotions, sensations. It allows you to relive moments and recreate them, continuously. I sincerely can’t find a negative aspect, I don’t think it has any.