In Italian, when taking a photo, we encourage our subject to smile by saying "sorridi!" ("smile!"), if you are being informal, "sorrida!", if you are being formal. If you were to translate directly from the English and say "dici formaggio!" your subject would be completely dumbfounded! If we happen to be taking a photo of more than one person, we say "sorridete!".
Often these days when teaching, as you turn from writing on the board towards the class, you see a mobile phone aimed at you and a student is taking a picture of what you've just written or the storyboard we are using. We make a joke of it of course: "Johnny Depp has joined us today!", or "When I loose weight, I'll be happy to pose for you!", etc. So yesterday, for fun, I took a photo of my class taking photos of of the board, which reminded me of some photos I took last october of tourists taking photos of Botticelli's The Birth of Venus and Primavera, at the Uffizi Gallery, and, of course, of Martin Parr's famous photograph (above) of tourists taking photos of Leonardo's La Gioconda at the Louvre Museum. Ecco le foto:
At Italia 500 we've been offering Italian courses, in Sydney, since 1995 and one of the most beautiful aspects of learning Italian is that it opens the door to a culture of unrivalled richness and diversity. In this blog we'll be sharing some of our favourite books, movies, places in Italy to visit, music, links to podcasts, information about local and international Italian themed events, and the odd "personal" view, in the hope that it will encourage you to delve further into a culture which continues to inspire us and millions of people all over the world.