Over couple of years back I had gleaned through an image of Santa Maddalena, Val di Funes. Though at that point of time I had very little knowledge of photography, the striking contrast in the landscape, form and light of this place had consumed me wholly. And thus began my relentless research. I don’t drive and it quickly dawned on me that navigating the Dolomites isn’t easy. As I combed through some local photographers from the area who shared my passion, I accidentally stumbled upon my biggest find of the last several years – Federico Antonello. A brilliant photographer, thorough gentleman, well spoken, empathetic and yet gritty at the same time. We developed a great bond during the trip and I have never ceased to admire his intricate knowledge of the terrain and light conditions alike. I’d probably someday get back to the Dolomites just to share a toast with him as much I would for the great scenery around. A story that’d always give me courage and hope was from this trip. As we traversed through the path to Tre Cime, it turned out to be embroiled by a record snowfall, with the hiking ridges being almost non-existent through the 5 km onward journey and overlooking a nearly 9,000 feet relentless drop into a pitless gorge. The first thing that we noticed was that both of us were pretty much the only ones attempting this daredevil feat. We subsequently slipped, clawed, risked and survived it to the summit. And then several fairly awesome shots ensued. However, the road to perdition was far from over. Soon after one of my favorite pictures was clicked, the magnificent golden light was snubbed out of the skies as the satanic clouds took over and left both of us in utter darkness, with no navigation and signs to guide us back. Our eventual celebratory toast at 2:00 a.m. was over some fine Italian grappa and I'd always owe this successful journey to my dear friend Federico Antonello - one of the best photographers on the continent and a righteous man. If you have him by your side, I guarantee you memories that you’d cherish lifelong.
I had travelled to different parts of Italy in different seasons since the 90s. I had experienced good and poor weather but nothing like the extreme weather condition in my visit to Dolomites in late October and early November 2018. It is a bless to have Federico as my private guide. Under those extreme weather condition he couldn’t take me to places which he had originally planned. But he still kept checking the road condition and drove me to where it was safe to visit. He has excellent knowledge about the Dolomites. Thank you so much Federico!!
Ho conosciuto Federico grazie alla passione comune per la fotografia. Posso sicuramente affermare che Federico è un compagno di viaggio ideale, ti trasmette l’energia e la carica giusta per trasformare le condizioni più sfavorevoli in occasioni fotografiche uniche. Federico ha trovato nello straordinario contesto delle Dolomiti il soggetto principale del suo percorso professionale, la ricerca continua e le sperimentazioni in campo fotografico lo portano continuamente alla scoperta di nuove prospettive. Sicuramente chi si appresta a fare un viaggio con Federico non rimarrà deluso, anzi non vedrà l’ora di ritornare lassù in quegli ambienti straordinari dove ritrovare panorami mozzafiato. Grazie Fede.