Attilio Bixio is a self-taught, enthusiast photographer living in Potenza, Italy, where he was born in 1967. He works as a construction engineer, mainly designing environmentally friendly buildings. His great passion for photography, which has been always present in his life, exploded in the last year. He usually takes photos of architectures, urban views and landscapes.
A few months ago he submitted a picture to an international competition (the Moscow International Foto Award 2015) for the first time ever. The picture submitted was the only still life picture he has ever taken, and it was awarded with an honorable mention!
It was to my great happiness and surprise a few days ago that I received this email from the jury of the Moscow International Foto Awards—MIFA 2015:
Dear Attilio Bixio,
It is my great pleasure to inform you that your work has been awarded a winning placement in the MIFA Photo Awards 2015! MIFA received thousands of great images from 84 different countries. Entries were judged in Architecture, Advertising, Book, Editorial, Fine Art, Moving Images, Nature, People and Portfolio categories.
MIFA asked the Jury Panel to review each submission based on the following criteria: originality, creativity, composition and most importantly overall impact. The identity of participating photographers are hidden from the jury to ensure fairness and integrity of the MIFA competition.
When I received the email, at first I thought it was a joke. I was very surprised because I started making photos more seriously less than a year ago, so it was incredible for me to win a prize in an international photography award. I took this photo in March 2015, and it was my very first still life photo and one of the first pictures taken with my new camera.
How I Got the Shot
I usually don’t make still life photos, but I had the idea for it when I got home with my wife from buying some food: vegetables, fruits, and pasta.
As I took the food from the shopping bag, I saw the broccoli looking like a tree, the butterfly-shaped pasta, the lemon, the lupine beans (a kind of bean from a plant of the legume family of Fabaceae) and the chives grass.
Immediately a light bulb went on in my head.
So I put all the “ingredients” on a table to create a spring landscape with them. When all the pieces were in place, I took some pictures using my reflex camera with the standard 18-55mm kit lens.
I had no equipment for still life photos, nor a flash, so I put the table near a large window to use natural light.
The table was brown, so I did a little post-processing to desaturate the wood color, and after a slight adjustment on contrast, brightness, and saturation I got the final version of the photo.
Here it is one more time, from original image to final shot: