You would be forgiven for mistaking Lori Cicchini’s photographic work for a painting. Such is the otherworldly subject matter and rich texture of each image she crafts. While her work has reached an international audience, Lori is still very much connected to Canberra, the city she calls home, working with local designers, models, makeup artists and hair stylist to create her signature images.
Lori’s career continues to go from strength to strength. Not only has her work been published in countless publications including Vogue Italia, Lori was recently invited to present as part of the Venice Biennale. She has also been named the ACT’s Top Professional Portrait Photographer for the second time as well as the 2017 AIPP ACT Illustrative Photographer of the year for the third year in a row.
We were privileged to talk to Lori about her time overseas, her passion for her work and to get a cheeky glimpse into what she is working on next.
Leiden: Tell us about your time in Venice?
Lori Cicchini: Venice was a whirlwind, I still can’t believe I was actually a part of the art buzz happening over there right now. The opening week was beyond my expectations; the small city of Venice oozed an incredible vibe in every alley. I met a number of incredible people each with an incredible story to share. I was inspired by numerous genres in art and architecture and was blown away by the offerings the city was displaying during this year’s Biennale. ‘Arte Viva Arte’ is the motto and it has an elated refrain about it. The Gardini and Arsenale are the homes of the country pavilions and I spent countless hours there just absorbing everything I could possibly fit in. I felt like a kid at the annual fair wanting to see all the exhibitions.
L: How did you first become interested in photography?
LC: I first became interested in photography when I returned from a holiday in Europe, funny that I should return to Venice this time with a completely different view of the place. I stood in the same streets and piazzas looking it at all with completely different eyes. I had always enjoyed photography but never took it seriously until I discovered that I wanted to capture emotion rather than what was physically there in front of me. It was from that experience that I wanted to learn more about the tools and experiment with them to capture what as in my head.
L: Your work is very ethereal and is reminiscent of a renaissance painting. Are you inspired by other creative disciplines?
LC: Ahhhh yes, I am definitely inspired by the renaissance period both by it’s paintings and it’s architecture, I have visited many places which continue to draw me back to that period. I love the play of colour and light and how it creates mood and emotion but in saying that I am also influenced by music, its rhythm and lyrics also play an important role in my vision. I am always playing music when when I edit/create my work in post-production. Sometimes my vision starts with the camera and then becomes more meaningful when I create something else from my capture. It’s a bit hard to articulate into words but it’s clear in my mind.
L: Congratulations on your recent accolades. What does it mean to you to have your work recognised in this way?
LC: Thank you very much, it’s important for my personal growth, it continues to push me to challenge my vision and artistic integrity.
L: What is your relationship with fashion?
LC: Fashion I guess is where I come from as an artist, I have a design background which I enjoyed but never really saw myself in from that point of view, I prefer to create a vision from fashion and tell stories within it.
I also enjoy exploring my interpretation of fashion through photography.
L: You often collaborate with designers and publications to produce fashion images. What do you like about fashion photography?
LC: Yes, it’s the story telling I thrive on when I work on editorials. It’s particularly fulfilling when I am commissioned to express my artistic vision within the context of the art directors brief.
L: Do you approach fashion work differently to how you would your other work?
LC: No I don’t believe so, I approach it very much the same way, I often see a story, its all about communication to me.
L: What exciting projects are you working on next?
LC: I have a number of projects on the cards at the moment they are all very different but they all excite me. I am also currently working a personal project which is inspired by my recent travels, it’s a very emotional series which still brings me to tears when I talk about it, I’m not sure how it will end, which in itself is scary but exciting to me, I am looking forward to allowing this project to take me on a creative journey.
Visit Loriana Fotografia to see more of Lori’s work
Top Image – Self Portrait
Photographer: Lori Cicchini
Second Image – Published in Dark Beauty Magazine