After the last interview with Caroline Hunter, picture photo editor at The Guardian Weekend magazine, I met Maria Giovanna Aceti. She has been a 20-year-experienced photoeditor in the media industry.
As soon as I met her she gave me the impression to have a great sensitivity for photography and in fact Maria Giovanna chooses her photographers for DOVE, a well-known Italian travel magazine, with passion and tastefully. In the following interview you can take out some hints and suggestions from Maria Giovanna.
Keep following what is next and certainly you will not only have a nice reading but you will also get a new point of view that can improve your photography.
Hi Maria Giovanna, first of all thanks for your time! For the blog readers, can you please briefly introduce yourself and your daily activities?
Hi everybody! I am a photoeditor and I work for Dove, a travel and lifestyle magazine. Part of my work is selecting photographers who work for the magazine; I usually assign photo projects that I edit at the end. I also select portfolios and look for new talents. I sometimes search for pictures to enrich unassigned projects, too.
How do you choose photo stories for Dove?
In 90% of cases we realize photo projects, because we prefer to have direct experience and exclusivity for our magazine. We rarely buy “already made” projects.
How do you hook your photographers and what are channels you use?
I have a team of photographers who work for Dove as freelancers and from time to time we also work with new photographers. It’s important to me to pick the most skillful hand for each assignment. In fact I always choose photographers according to their own features.
When you assign a project abroad, are you seeking for a photographer based there? Or are you giving the project to someone whose you know history and skills?
I select photographers to go abroad as well, and usually they have already worked for Dove. I rarely look for a based photographer, and in this case, this happens after some careful scouting.
What are the main characteristics that must never be missing in the pictures you use?
The pictures produced for Dove must have a soul. They have to tell a story. They have to give the flavor of the destination. They have to make readers dream of a place through colors, smells, sounds, atmosphere and emotions that the photographer experienced there.
Today smartphones take pictures. What do you think of this new “equipment”?
By now, we never used smartphone pictures… but perhaps in the future this could happen.
What piece of advice would you give to photographers in order to improve the visibility of their content? Or to produce photos for a magazine like yours?
Dove doesn’t publish only landscape pictures. A photographer who works for us must be able to shoot food, interiors, sport activities and people, too.
Through photos, the photographer has to tell a story of the place that is scheduled for a peculiar section of the magazine. So the important thing is to have a correct and balanced image mix among interiors, exteriors, people, food and locations. The purpose is always to give the reader the perception and the mood of that place.
Do you go ‘on field’ during an assignment?
I usually do a brief with the photographer, before departure, telling him or her what kind of assignment I am expecting to see, the mood and flavor which should be transmitted through images. I often keep in touch with them during their work. Lately, I have been doing some photographic experiments to find innovative elements for our pictures, and that’s why I have been “on field” during some projects with great results!
Thank you Giovanna!