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Worth a thousand words

October 21, 2006|By Joyce Rudolph

Professional photographer Marco Franchina has converted his Burbank photography studio into an art gallery. What makes his gallery unique, he said, is that it features work only by photographers.

The featured photographer will change each month, and for the gallery's debut on Oct. 28, Franchina's longtime friend Bruce Kramer of Eagle Rock will show his photographs taken in India.

The 40 images in the show were taken in Rajasthan while Kramer was on a month-long vacation last year, Kramer said.

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An early riser, he would awaken before sunrise and walk around the village, watching people as they were waking up.

They would invite him in to have breakfast and tea with them, he said.

"The light in the morning is beautiful and is enhanced by all the dust rising from the people walking around," he said.

"It's very hot in the afternoon, so most of the work is done in the morning or at the end of the day, so that's when I could capture the activity of the village," he said.

His favorite subject to photograph was the children, he said.

"I've been all over the world for travel and business and I've photographed people in many different countries and I've found the Indian people, and especially the children in these villages, to be friendly — and as curious of me as I was of them," he said.

Kramer formerly photographed for fashion magazines in New York, Milan, Sydney and Los Angeles.

Now a photographer's agent, he hires commercial photographers to shoot posters and other advertising materials for the film industry, he said.

One of Franchina's favorite photographs in the show is of a boy with a kite. The boy is on a tree, holding on to two of the limbs, and there is a silhouette of a string coming out of his toe.

"It's really quite beautiful, Franchina said.

"That's a piece I would probably get for my own."

When choosing photographers for an exhibition, Franchina said he wants photographs that tell a story, those that are more like photojournalism.

"I'm going to show what I'm going to like," he said. "I come from old-school photography. The photojournalists I admire are Sebastiao Salgado and James Nachtwey who photograph wars and poverty. These guys are the real photographers. I want you to walk by and not just notice a photograph, but see a story."

Kramer and Franchina met while working as high-fashion photographers in Milan, Franchina said.

"We both pretty much started our careers in 1982," he said.

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