top of page

How I learnt to approach and photograph strangers

Updated: Apr 30, 2022

The first time I took part in the LensCulture photo competition (, with my first series of photographs from

'I am your mirror' project, even though I didn't, I received positive feedback on my photography work.

LensCulture gives you the opportunity to request a review of your work.

This pleased me.

They complimented me and mentioned some photographers I should have followed to learn how to take better photographs.

One of them is Richard Renaldi, photographer of the Magnum agency.

'Touching Strangers' is the project that they advised me to follow, in which he himself stops on the street and couples people who do not know each other, allowing them to pose as they see fit.

I really liked his work, so I started following him on social media.

Then, over time, I developed my style.

At the time, I was working as a 'paparazzo' on the streets of London.

It was 2011.

The work has kept me busy for almost 3 years. I was working as freelancer for a couple of agencies. One of them was Flynet and then Wenn.

I was always on the street, even in the rain and snow.

Nothing could stop me.

The waiting hours were very long and disappointing.

And many times, it happened that I couldn't take photos of celebrities, because I couldn't find myself in the right place at the right time.

A little for delay, a little for personal difficulties.

I felt very discouraged, because that job was a source of income for me.

I don't know why I chose to be a paparazzo, at that time.

It's really tough. Many paparazzi disrespect peers and celebrities.

Celebrity is money, so any photograph, even the ugliest and most decadent, can build stories or scandals that can spark interest among Gossip magazine readers.

I, myself, felt a little different. My photos were mostly respectful portraits and my paparazzi colleagues were laughing at me.

At that time, I worked with only men and many of them were very rude and didn't behave well with me. Out of 50 paparazzi, 2 or max 5, were women.

It sounds strange, but over time, that 'paparazzo' experience gave me that strength, self-confidence and courage to step out of my comfort zone and do things I never could have done before.

For example, it was very difficult to attract the attention of celebrities.

I was at the beginning and nobody in that field knew me so it was difficult.

I was shouting all the time to catch celebrities attention and began to be more aggressive, but in a positive way.