Pietro Masturzo, photographer, World Press Photo 2010 Winner. © Sasha Krasnov, 2010

Red October, a former candy plant in Moscow. Having been adored by Soviet kids for the sweet smell of chocolate and candies, now it no longer produces sweets and pastries, having become an exhibition space. In 2010 it displayed an exhibition of the works of World Press Photo winners.

At such grand events the most interesting things happen mostly during the opening event. At that exhibition I longed to see some photos I was impressed by and did not want to miss a chance to have a chat with the victorious photographers.

Pietro Masturzo, photographer, who won this famed photo contest in 2010, was one of the guests expected to make an opening speech. His prize-winning photo showed women protesting against the controversial outcome of the Iranian presidential elections in 2009. In my view, it is an absolutely iconic picture in which you won’t see blood and horrors of war.

Why are they protesting on a rooftop? Probably, to let more people hear them. Or, maybe, to be able to quickly leave the “crime scene” if riot police come after them? It perfectly conveys the emotions of these people who dared to speak out!

I went to listen to what Pietro was saying and somehow, without realizing it, took out my camera and started taking pictures of him. The top photo captures the moment when Pietro was pondering over a question asked by the audience. I liked the poignant expression on his face and how the lamp behind him illuminates his hair.

After he was over with the questions, I approached him, introducing myself as a portrait photographer, and asked if he did not mind me making his photo. We got to one of the well-lit walls and made several portraits.

  • Camera: Pentax 67
  • Lens: Pentax 67 90mm f/2.8
  • Film: Kodak T-Max 400
// Sasha Krasnov