Photo Daily: Stefanel Billboard at Quadrilatero Della Moda, Milan, Italy

Stefanel Billboard at Quadrilatero Della Moda, Milan, Italy ©1999

Stefanel Billboard at Quadrilatero Della Moda, Milan, Italy ©1999

I feel very at home shooting in the beautiful old chaotic street of Italy. Cities built for more simple traffic times. Narrow streets, intersecting and crisscrossing in wonderful patterns. And in a city such as Milan, with a certain urgency that doesn’t exist in the more relaxed Italian cities to the south.

Make no mistake, Milano is a fashion capital of the world and the first thing I did when I arrived for my stay in 1999 was to purchase a proper pair of shoes. Not only because I was planning to cover a lot of ground on foot and needed good footwear, but because I had arrived, as only Americans do, with only a pair of sneakers. A last-minute packing oversight.

I was staying with my friend Tonya who was working as an au pair for a nice family there. While she cared for the children, I was free to explore and discover with my camera.

Even though Milan’s tram is an easy and efficient way to travel around the city, as in travels past, I usually opt for walking. I prefer to get a sense of where I am, the distance between things and to start to integrate with the locals. Finding the interesting moments is also much easier when you’re free to stop and consider the visuals around you whenever you wish and not have to worry about mentally making a note of what you just passed out the window.

For this particular photo, it was late in the afternoon and the low sun was creating the most beautiful light through the old man-made canyons near Quadrilatero Della Moda. Reflections off of the tram tracks bounced my way as I positioned myself where the natural lines seemed to guide me. Then it was simply a matter of waiting for an interesting composition of people. With the scooter and the man with the briefcase looking in the same direction, following the diagonal of the street, it was the perfect convergence of compositional geometry.

I love those moments when the chaos resolves in such a magical way.


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