As summer slowly begins to pack its bags, we had a chance to speak with globe-trotting influencers Andrea Tamburrini (@andreatamburrini) and Francesco Innocenti (@franinnocenti ), who were recently added to Pulse’s exclusive talent roster. We were curious to discover what brought them to photography. We also wanted to learn how spending the year surrounded by such a variety of landscapes and cultures influences their creative vision not just for their Instagram accounts, but also for AndyJam, an ambitious writing project in the form of a blog that documents their travels in reportage-style detail.
Their adventure began with a visit to the soaring skyline of New York City in the winter of 2013. Inspired by the urban architecture, cozy coffee shops, and bustling city life, Andrea began snapping shots with his iPhone and posting on social media. Six months later, on a celebratory birthday trip to Paris, he and Francesco joined forces, working together as a team. From that point on, they decided to focus on travel and lifestyle photography. Early content was very aesthetically-driven, and their main influences were US-based lifestyle photographers as opposed to influencers. “Back then, it was more about taking pictures than showing yourself,” Andrea adds, offering a window into the duo’s mindset at the time.
In terms of style and influences, “less is more” is an accurate description of their early photography. They both spoke of minimalism, Nordic influences, plain bright lights and desaturated colors. There was no fancy post-processing, and the words “iPhone-only” were branded on their Instagram bios. A year and a half ago, the switch to a camera became obvious as they sought the creative freedom to shoot in diverse lighting scenarios, from the blinding sun of Santorini to a dim atmospheric train-carriage on the Orient Express. Their style shifted as well, from composed single shot flatlays to storytelling in a journalistic fashion, capturing the scene from multiple angles. The transition to reportage photography was accompanied by the launch of their blog, AndyJam, in March 2017. This new platform details their travels posted on Instagram with a wealth of additional images and text, allowing the viewer to experience the location more intimately. Because of the rushed way audiences generally interact with Instagram, quickly scrolling through different feeds and giving little attention to carefully-worded captions, Andrea and Francesco wanted to find a different medium for expressing all the thoughts and emotions they were experiencing on their journey. An extension of their Instagram accounts, AndyJam highlights the storytelling aspect they cherish in their photographic work while allowing for more experimentation, as they are not restricted to posting a limited number of photographs of a certain location.
Because their year is spent travelling and visiting such a diverse range of countries and cultures, it was interesting to find out how this has impacted their photography. They both agreed that the destination is the main drive for the content produced, and anything from the particular colors, sounds, or quality of light that make a place unique impacts how they choose to capture their experience. In the past, there was a conscious effort to maintain a stylistic consistency on the feed, but their approach has become increasingly open and improvisational, letting the location influence how it will be photographed. They mentioned how, just within the US, it’s possible to go from the frantic, ever-inspiring energy of NYC, to the more laid-back and peaceful experience of a walk to the beach in L.A. Their intention is to create feeds that are the opposite of photographers who slap the same filter on every trip; they let the colors surrounding them act as the true filters, from the deep blue seas of Greece to the warm amber hues of Morocco.
As AndyJam has a section devoted to food photography, we were curious to find out if the duo had any notable culinary experiences during their recent travels. As two Italians who grew up surrounded by some of the world’s finest cuisine, they emphasized the importance of fresh ingredients. Highlights included the cuisine of Portugal, which left them in awe of the variety of different dishes, and Greek food, with a special mention of a signature grilled octopus dish enjoyed on the island of Milos. Speaking of future plans, their eyes lit up when they mentioned Peru. In the works for next year is a safari trip in Botswana, a childhood dream of Andrea’s.
As a parting note, we asked if they had any words of advice or encouragement for young photographers wanting to debut in the travel and lifestyle photography space. They both agreed that the key to success is to take pictures of what you enjoy, and not worry about how many “likes” a certain post will garner. There is a trap in aligning yourself too much with what the big influencers are doing, and offering a watered-down copy of their feeds. A truly authentic profile will attract a niche group of people who are interested in the same things, and this will be the real springboard towards success. We are excited to follow Andrea and Francesco on their upcoming adventures, both in the travel space, but also in the lifestyle and fashion arena.