ISABELLA MAFFEI | FEATURED PHOTOGRAPHER
Born in Varese (Italy) in 1973, where she still lives, Isabella always liked to swim and she made her first dive with mask and snorkel when she was 16 years old.
A true passion for the ocean drove her to become a scuba instructor and manage her dive center, “Deep Avenue” , in Mendrisio, in the Italian side of Switzerland. She started to take underwater photos to her scuba diving students as first tangible results of a new adventure. However, this initial business approach developed soon into a true deep genuine passion.
“UW photography is a form of communication, an universal visual language which meet my ambition to tell without a word the amazing beauty of nature. As the sea has its own laws, as well photography, which includes theory and practice together. I had to study and dive to put in practice what I was dreaming in my soul. Sometimes I found myself disappointed but I never gave up, always thinking that I have still a lot to learn to develop my skills “.
Isabella is already working with a number of magazines, “MARE”, “SCUBASHOOTERS” , “SUB”, “IL SUBACQUEO”, “SCUBAZONE” and “FACCIUNSALTO” combining her passion of photography to writing. She got a number of international awards very much deserved because of her very personal way to use the light for depicting the environment. My way to take underwater photography is my way to communicate using an universal visual language; it comes from my strong ambition to tell, to describe without words the marine underwater perfection.
I fancy the idea to shoot dynamic pictures in order to draw the observer inside the image;I love it so much and I cannot consider anymore a picture as a static, bi-dimensional image…In such trend, I want to develop my future experimentation. I do know is hard, in photography nothing can be improvised and rules, for a perfect canonic composition, must be respected. However with no challenges there is not gain.
Anytime I dive, my Nikon camera is with me, as an added part of my body … My love for the underwater diving builds up however I do not look anymore the Neptune’s Garden through my mask but my camera’ shutter. I started with a simple digital camera, insistively shooting pictures of everything was around me … in the time my passion, I guess I can call it in this way, grown together a new perception of the underwater environment …I was feeling as a writer with no words …
I was desperately in the need of a magic wand to help me to get my ideas true, to carve a moment in an image passing in front of me … necessity brought me to move to a DSLR. To observe the World trough a lens was a way to increase my sensitivity towards the environment. I was even feeling more deep inside it. A digital image is not just a number of pixels, but a powerful way of communication which may be more effective of words.
Besides this, to collect unique images of the Marine World may help to monitor the environment and to contribute to save it, providing to all the spectators (not only the scuba divers) positive feelings and environmental responsiveness.
The emotion arose by a photo can be very devasting; it doesn’t matter if comes from a dyeing turtle cought in an abandoned net or from a beautiful landscape of an intact blooming coral barrier. The sent message is always the same : the importance to preserve and protect the underwater World. “To write by light” is like to weave a plot of an amazing never ending story where we are all embroiled.