Friday, February 12, 2016

Interview with Rhaíssa Monteiro Pinto

26-year-old Brazilian photographer Rhaíssa Monteiro Pinto who joined with us in a film photography project for 2 months ago coming back today in an interview to share more of his work.

- Hi Rhaíssa, can you tell us more about you?

 A Brazilian who doesn't like coffee or soccer, but does like samba and carnival. Recently post-graduated in film, I studied and work mostly with cinematography. 26 years young, back to Brazil after having lived in 22 different houses, 10 different cities, 5 different countries.

- How did you get started in photography?

 In the first semester of the university we had photography class. I was so amazed that instantaneously I was sure I wanted to work with that. The professor we had was incredibly inspiring. She is a great photographer, cinematographer and above all an admirable person. I guess her teaching added a lot of enchantment to photography. The next year I was a monitor in the photo lab of the university. It was built by the students which allowed us to learn a lot in a hand-made and experimental way.

- We saw you have experimented with many types of destroyed films, and most of their results are so incredible. So could you please tell us some of your work?

 I soak analogue photos in liquids such as white wine, red wine, hot water with salt, bleach, pee, carbonate of soda, lemon, vinegar, paprika in water etc... sometimes I also use expired films and tights in front of the lens.

- Tell us about your influences and what inspires you?

 Either in film or in photography what touches me the most are comments about reality. So, surrealism, fantastic worlds. I am touched by images that try to express the way we feel reality rather than images that try to document reality "as we see". An interior portrait. Soaking films is one of the ways I found to create marvelous worlds, my interior portrait, and that is only possible in analogue support.
 I guess I am also really inspired by the person who I am looking at. Most of the people I click are close to me. The photos are also a way to show them my affection. I hope that is felt by them when they see the picture. it is a gift in which I tell them that their passage in my life is really important to me and I would like to keep a trace of it.

- Are you a full time photographer or is it just a hobby? And are you currently working on any projects?

 Let's say I am in the imaging world. From camera assistant to cinematographer, from photographer to director (love Super-8!!). My transit - like most of the people in this area - is between professional and personal projects. So it is a real full-time occupation, because in my free time I am still making images.
 Right now I am quite obsessed by the link between melancholy, phantasmagoria as a photography essence (the "presence" of the past in the present, the return of the dead) and the feminine iconography - not only the female body, even though this is my main symbol, but also icons that in the occidental imaginary are related to the feminine, such as the nature, the water, the moon.

- Do you have a favorite photographer?

 I am incapable to list favorite directors, photographers... But two people came to my mind while thinking about this question. One is the Czech photographer Miroslav Tichý. I am extremely touched by his handmade images. The cameras he built combined to his gaze of admiration towards women, made his pictures very authentic. The second person is the young photographer Alison Scarpulla. Her imaging world is beautifully mysterious. I identify myself with her work, not only because she also soaks negatives, but also because of this supernatural and mystic figures.

- Is there any advice you can give to new analogue shooters?

 I believe in the digital era the biggest reason to shoot in analogue is to explore the possibilities specific to this support. Digital also offers its specificities, one medium doesn't replace the other, they complement each other. So, let's experiment what only analogue offer us. (And get a negative scanner!).

Rhaíssa, thank you so much for the interview!

See more of his work at his photostream on Flickr.

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  1. Good job . Your photos and article both are awesome and admirable .

  2. Oh! This article has suggested to me many new ideas. I will embark on doing it. Hope you can continue to contribute your talents in this area. Thank you.
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