Conceptual Portraits with a Stunning Interplay of Light and Shadow

Alessio Albi

Photographer Alessio Albi’s images are all absorbed with a sense of melancholy, his subjects depicted in dull lights that are evocative of a sense glum. The people depicted are almost always unsmiling, shot in low-light backgrounds.

Alessio Albi portrait photography

They are pictured in natural, purely outdoor situations lending an earthy quality to his work. The unembellished ambience is a key element in Albi’s style as he draws inspiration from natural settings such as water formations, foggy landscapes, and forest backdrops.

Alessio Albi portrait photo

Albi is a former nutritionist who has unlikely turned his efforts mostly on photography. The twenty-seven-year-old leans towards moody and expressive portraits but has a penchant for natural light sources that he comes across outdoors in his native Perugia, Italy.

Alessio Albi photographer

His portraits primarily feature pensive young women immersed in shadows cast by wild foliage. Albi is also drawn to shooting under overcast weather conditions, creating a light diffuser that softens his images.

Alessio Albi portrait photo series

He is also enchanted by the variety of lighting situations nature can throw at you, saying, “During winter we can have a bright sunny day, and the day after a wonderful fog. Summer light is a bit more difficult due to hard shadows, but I love it because I can shoot in water…”

Alessio Albi photography

To integrate further drama in his images, Albi skilfully uses other elements like plants, grass, trees, and wildflowers that although mostly wildlife, add a touch femininity. He enhances this soft quality by playing with the subject’s flowing hair which works as an effective visual aid, framing every model’s enigmatic face.

Alessio Albi photo

Still, his main ingredient in every photo is natural light. “I love natural light because it creates amazing shapes and volumes that I can’t obtain with artificial light,” he said in a recent interview. “I could spend an entire day waiting for that precise ray of light coming through my window and shoot hundreds of photos only with this light source, because I love the way it interacts with the human body. I also love cloudy days for my outside shooting, because clouds create the perfect light diffuser and add lot of atmosphere to pictures.”

See his pensive, melancholy-laced work here.

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Patricia Ramos

Patricia Ramos

I am a freelance photographer who is no stranger to smudged lenses, long hours in front of the computer, heavy camera bags (and the back aches that ensued) and missing lens caps. If you know what I'm talking about, you probably have as much love and passion for photography as I do.