These last few days for me have been very animated. I spent last week in one of the cities in which I have always dreamed to go: New York. But now I’m not going to tell you about the big apple (I will write more than one article on this fantastic city), but I want to tell the last three days have passed.
After returning to Florence on Saturday, I had the Sunday to rest and prepare a new baggage to depart again. This time the destination was Brussels, the capital of Europe. The Belgian city is called the capital of Europe for the presence of numerous European institutions, including the European Commission. The European Commission recently had launched a photography competition entitled “Europe in my region”. The purpose of the contest was to show how European funds for the development of regions and cities had been employed. Thanks to my sister that made me discover the existence of this contest, I decided to participate in bringing three shots that showed the development of European projects. To my surprise and delight, I was contacted in September by the European Commission because I was one of three winners of the competition. Were selected three photos, one was my shot of the tramway in Florence, and the other two were that of Diellza Balaj (citizen of Kosovo, who chose a project for the modernization of agriculture in the town of Decan), and Saara Olkkonen (Finnish, with a picture on the preservation of the ringed seal).
Monday October 10th I flew to Brussels as winner of the competition to participate at the European week of regions and cities (which was held in brussels from 10 to 13 October) and take part in the award ceremony. Plus receive airfare and hotel accommodation, I had the great opportunity to participate in a photography workshop held by the American photographer Emily Smith. After the workshop and lunch in European palace regions and cities, I took part in the ceremony, during which I and the other two girls , as winners, we have showed our photos to journalists present at the event. Subsequently I was interviewed to tell more in detail the origin of the photo and my story. Then the European Commission donated to us a printed copy of our winning photo (which will send us at home and I look forward) and they renewed their congratulations.
As you can imagine I’m full of joy, for many reasons. First of all, I feel a great satisfaction in seeing recognized and appreciated my work. Of course, I’m very happy when people, friends and relatives make me congratulations when I show my shot or my article. But knowing that a jury of two professional photographers and a social media expert has rewarded my photo, is a great honor for me, also because it is the first official recognition. I am also happy because I was given a trip, which gave me a chance to get into the buildings of the European institutions, and has allowed me to spend three days in Brussels to visit the Belgian city. To make it all more magical then was the context of the event; the european week of regions and cities involving all EU countries, and that allowed me to meet and confront with people of different nationalities and cultures. An experience that I will remember for a lifetime.
So thanks to the European Commission, thanks to the photo academy Brussels, thanks to my sister Camilla (who introduced me to the competition and accompanied me on the trip), thanks to my sister Cinzia, mom and dad who always support me and give me many tips, thanks to my girlfriend Martina, that helps me and that always gives me inspiration (in fact, was present while I took the winning photo) and thanks to you who appreciate what I do.
Good light to everyone.