What do you like about Florence, what makes it different from Jacksonville?
There is life in Florence. When I stay here, I like to rent an apartment, not stay at a hotel. Because there isn't air conditioning, you have to open your windows, and that is when you hear everything happening. I can hear people talking to each other on the street below, music coming from the apartment across from me. The other night there was an accident, and I could see and hear all these people helping and acting like a real community.
Do you have any favorite places or things to do here?
I love walking around the streets and finding new places and meeting people. I can walk for 6 hours a day! Today I walked into a private area to take a picture, and got caught. But the guys who told me to leave were nice, and I got to have human interaction. That's a great thing about Florence, is that you can talk with anyone and learn so much. I really love the neighborhoods on the Oltrano side of the river. There is so much to discover there.
For my photography I like to give myself a theme. Now i've been focusing on pairs of things: like two vespas next to each other. I'm also taking a lot of pictures of things I find on the streets. They are little pieces of the life, and things that people don't usually look at. I don't like photographing the usual things, like big scenic views, because those are just part of Florence. It's the little, unexpected things that give Florence it's character.
What do you do with your photography?
Well I would like to set up an online shop for people to buy them, but I don't have that yet. I am a teacher, so that's my job, but I love doing photography on the side. I give some of my pictures as gifts to people too. One time, I took a photo of this giant fish on display at a restaurant here in Florence. It turned out really great, so I framed it and gave it to them. Then, the other day I walked past the restaurant and they had my photo in their window display! It was fantastic seeing it there.
Here are a few introductory photographs that show the "Unexpected Florence":
|"Trash Bins Behind a Palazzo"|
|"The Mystery of the Abandoned Bicycle"|
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