Mirrored: Photo series reveals contrasting views
“No cheating,” says Sebastian Magnani of his series “Reflections,” in which the same round mirror is positioned in various environments to reflect different views. What was reflected in real life is what was captured in the photo, he notes—no editing. “I was many times overwhelmed,” he says.
INSPIRATION: The concept for the series sprang to mind when Magnani’s girlfriend was holding a mirror. “I was so impressed by the big contrast between the reflecting light
(the sky from the window) and the apartment (in the dark). So I started to experiment with backgrounds in nature and the reflecting bright light from the sky, trees, and all that’s above.”
LOCATIONS: He needs both a compelling background for the mirror and a compelling reflection in the mirror. He also assesses the available light and the mood of the surroundings. “It isn’t easy to find the right spot,” he says. “I have made tons of photos to get the most beautiful contrasts. But I choose to contrast light, colors, structures, life and death—all of that.”
CREATION: Magnani takes two photos: one with the lens focused on the mirror’s reflection and one with the lens focused on the ground. He merges these photos in Photoshop using a simple circle mask.
EQUIPMENT: His latest creations have been made with a Canon EOS 5DS R and the Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II lens using available light.
CHALLENGES: The right light and an impressive reflection. “There are a lot of possibilities of reflections but not a lot of good ones,” he says. “So it’s not easy to get.”
Amanda Arnold is the associate editor of Professional Photographer.