This picture slept in my mind for the last two years, so I’m really happy now because I finally made it!
Every time I looked at myself in the mirror, in fact, my bald head reminded me of the moon’s surface. And the image which immediately followed was always the one of the Apollo 11‘s mission taking place on it, with the LEM module, the American astronauts, the flag and all the other memories of this extraordinary event. Put in a psychological way, I really needed to do this photo to free my mind from such an obsession!
So I’ve made a research among the NASA’s public websites in order to find some good hi-res photos, and eventually discovered an incredible archive, created by the enthusiast Kipp Teague in February 1999, containing a lot of digitized images taken from the original film rolls. Those exposed by Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong during the 1969’s mission by means of a customized version of the famous Hasselblad 500 EL camera called EDC (Electric Data Camera).
And that’s it! I took a studio portrait of myself, grabbed a couple of pictures from the online archive and put all the stuff together. The lighting scheme for my portrait must be a rather harsh single-light one, just like it is in our solar system. I ended up with a compromise by choosing the so called “rembrandt-scheme” because I wanted to keep both my eyes visible. Then I cropped the frame just under my nose to get a square final image and a strong focus on the Apollo 11‘s scene of my “lunardream”. Keeping my whole face in the frame would have been too much distracting.
The astronaut you see is Buzz Aldrin, photographed by Neil Armstrong while he was setting up some instruments for the mission’s planned experiments.
This work has made me think of a complete series of self portraits photographed this way. I’ll work on this and post any updates here and on my portfolio page.