Theater, cinema and the photographer who loves them

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Lisa Tomasetti.

However, she never felt comfortable on stage, and at 15 she quit acting. But as her later career shows, she didn’t stray too far from the arts.

“I grew up with actors,” she says. “I really feel comfortable around them and I really respect them and what they do.”

Still image photography is crucial but mostly anonymous work, and Tomasetti says it requires certain characteristics as well as the usual technical skills.

“You have to get along well with everyone and you can’t be a parasite,” she says. “You also have to feel when there is tension on set and read the actors so you can say to yourself, ‘Maybe I should drop that one.’

Tomasetti arrived at college at a time when she said she needed an environment to nurture her artistically. She completed a Masters in Documentary Photography, studying the history and theory of photography. “I really enjoyed having speakers with whom I was able to chat. It was great to have like-minded people talking about your work and their work.

For all that she has done, she considers working with ballet her “dream job”, but she is driven to create her own works, saying “this is my own way of seeing the world”.

Tomasetti’s large-scale photographs, which are part of the collections of the National Gallery of Australia and the Art Gallery of South Australia, often feature her daughter, whom she describes as her muse.

“I feel like when I do my visual arts work, it has to be on a larger scale,” she says. “He has to fine tune the lighting like the great masters and hopefully tell a different story so people in the galleries don’t think, ‘I could have taken that.’


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