Presenting Marta Giaccone

Marta Giaccone is an Italian photographer originally from Milan. In October 2014, she finished her MA program in Documentary Photography at the University of South Wales.

Marta is mostly known for her photographs of people. Her master's portfolio featured a series, mostly comprised of portraits, titled Be Still, My Heart. This work focused on the stories of young mothers in South Wales, seeking to emphasise the story of the individual, as opposed to the common portrayal of teenage motherhood.

Despite being known for her portraiture work, Marta displays a wide variety of imagery on her website. This week I would like to present some photographs she has taken of food, as well as some of her writing about this topic.

Food Photography, as most people in the business know, is more challenging than it may appear. Marta's photographs appeal to me, because of their relation with a more formal design aesthetic, making use of color, texture, and balance within the composition of the frame. Many food sellers also take advantage of such design based principles in everyday scenarios. For example, meat counters in grocery stores across the US will often line shelves with artificial parsley, using the green color to make the red of meat appear more prominent; implying that the food on display is fresher than it may be in actuality.

Aside from aesthetics, cuisine is a cultural topic and a point of great concern in health and wellness. While not vegan herself (she often eats fish), Marta has a lot of positive comments on vegan recipes which I encourage her to share. Below is a short text written by Marta and some of her photographs of beautiful and healthy foods. To see more of her work, including the previously mentioned series, you can visit her website at martagiaccone.com.

Marta Giaccone: On Vegan Food

I love creating healthy vegan recipes because the range of ingredients, once you take out all animal products, white flours and refined sugars, may seem to be quite limited but in reality it's not true. There's so much to draw from and also I've discovered, and still am discovering, so many foods that I'd never heard of before. Coming from Italy - millet, quinoa, amaranth, maple syrup, date syrup, chia seeds. I love finding out that there are combinations of ingredients - such as ground flaxseeds and water - that can substitute staple basics like eggs in baking, that serve the same function and produce the same results. You get really creative.

We are so used to, and addicted to, refined sugars and ultra sweet foods that it takes a while (days or weeks depending on the person) to detox from them; but then you may be surprised at how easy it is to just use a banana or a couple of medjoul dates in a recipe instead of plain white sugar! So much healthier and everything actually tastes better and non artificial.

Another upside is that most plant-based foods are super colorful and it feels amazing eating rainbows!

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