Accepting photography as an art, by artists or art galleries, or by the public in general was not easy, in the past. Photographers were considered by painters and other artists to be “coarse, meddlesome, devoid of any artistic ability.” But over time this statement revealed how deceived they were and photography was gradually perceived as a form of expression and could be entirely subjective.

Today photography has several purposes and is accessible to anyone who wants to capture moments and memories of holidays, family or friends. In this way we see one of the most valid social functions of photography.

But looking at another perspective, we can even compare it to literature, as Michael Langford does in Basic Photography. This is because the process of learning photography is similar of learning writing: first you must draw the letters that form the words; then you have to write them down, writing sentences and paragraphs. But of course the knowledge of writing does not transform someone into a writer; you need to have ideas to expose through words.

In this second episode of “What Would the World Be Without?” Gustavo Arrais, recognized as one of the 100 most influential photographers in the world, for 3 consecutive years, by the renowned international competition “Black and White Spider Awards” and in 2015 by the International Color Awards , exposes his vision and his feeling about the art of photography.

A portrait of Gustavo Arrais

He began his career with 18 years old, as an assistant at Estúdio Abril, the largest in Latin America. There he had the opportunity to work with great brazilian professional photographers, for 6 years.

In 1999 he began, in fact, to act as a photographer. He worked for three years in a studio in São Paulo, making advertisement photography, until he set up his own studio alongside the experienced photographer Dercilio Vanzelli. Among his main works, the most prominent are editorial and advertising, and he has also received 2 April prizes for journalism.

With almost 25 years of his career, Gustavo is the author of photographic copyright projects, of which the #LENSLIGHTPROJECT stands out, which will result in a book of portraits of artists from various segments, photographed with an illumination designed and developed solely for the project.

Another work that deserves attention is developed in partnership with his wife. In it, he acts as an official photographer in a major humanitarian cause in Mozambique, through the non-governmental organization (NGO) Fraternity Without Borders, which promotes education, food and health. It is a documentary work that results in shocking images of a country suffering from extreme poverty.

Below you will find a gallery with striking images of this two projects:


Visit the official website: gustavoarrais.com
Social networks: Instagram e Facebook

And for you, what would the world be without photography? Tell us in the comments.


Learn more about this unprecedented On•Z project

‘What would the world be without?’ is a documentary series about the eleven most present arts nowadays.

On•Z and Weedoo Studio of Arts and Films have developed this project, which counts on the participation of artists of different nationalities, so that we can understand the importance of the arts, not only in Brazil but worldwide. This series is born with the intention of making us reflect on the influence caused by each art, both in the development of humanity throughout the ages and their impact on the life of each human being, and in the transformation of the world and society as a whole , leaving the question in the air so that each one tries to answer individually: “WHAT WOULD THE WORLD BE WITHOUT?” [the arts].

Cineasta. Fotógrafa. Atriz. Amante das artes, da natureza e do ser humano!

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