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Giuseppe Santamaria of 'Men in This Town'

Creative People

On a recent trip to Sydney I visited the Foley Street precinct – a little laneway of neighbouring shopfronts in Darlinghurst, each occupied by a creative business, with rent subsidised by  City of Sydney. ONE of the brilliant little businesses I discovered here was Fine Fellow, a mens’ concept store / photographic studio, co-owned by Giuseppe Santamaria – a Toronto-born, Sydney based photographer, fashion blogger and now, publisher.

Men In This Town is Giuseppe’s street style blog, which has accumulated 550,000 followers on Tumblr since its inception in 2010. It was turned into a book in 2014, and in 2015, Giuseppe began publishing a printed magazine titled MITT.

We recently stopped by Giuseppe’s studio and store to chat about his impressive and varied creative output!

31st August, 2017

Inside Sydney concept space Fine Fellow, which Giuseppe Santamaria opened earlier this year. Photo – Nikki To.

Photographer Giuseppe Santamaria launched the Men in This Town Blog in 2010, with a number of spin-off books and MITT Magazine following. Photo – Nikki To.

Men in This Town: Alone in a Crowd‘ book, first published in 2010, on display at Fine Fellow. Photo – Nikki To.

Inside the Fine Fellow store, which is part of City of Sydney’s Oxford Street and Foley Street Creative Spaces Program. Photo – Nikki To.

Store details. Photo – Nikki To.

Issue 6 of the MITT Magazine based on the MITT blog. Photo – Nikki To.

Past and current MITT Magazines (though they never date!!). Photo – Nikki To.

Toronto born-and-raised Giuseppe shooting street style in Sydney. Photo – Nikki To.

Inside the beautiful MITT Mag. Photo – Nikki To.

Giuseppe snaps stylish ladies too, and has published the book ‘Women in This Town: New York, Paris, Melbourne, Tokyo, Madrid & London‘. Photo – Nikki To.

Giuseppe’s adorable dog Baxter strikes a pose. Photo – Nikki To.

Giuseppe studied Advertising and Graphic Design in Toronto, Canada an took an influential summer internship at V Magazine in New York City before landing a junior graphic designer job with Russh Magazine in Australia. Photo – Nikki To.

‘I wanted to take a closer look at who the men on the street were and their particular approach to the many facets of life, beyond their personal style,’ says Giuseppe.Photo – Nikki To.

Lucy Feagins
Thursday 31st August 2017

‘I wanted to take a closer look at who the men on the street were, and their particular approach to the many facets of life, beyond their personal style.’ – Giuseppe Santamaria.

Giuseppe Santamaria originally studied Advertising and Graphic Design back in his home town of Toronto, Canada. A summer internship at V Magazine in New York City opened his eyes to the world of photography and fashion magazines. ‘I eventually, unexpectedly found my way to Sydney, where I landed a job as a junior graphic designer at Russh Magazine, giving me the opportunity to work with some really amazing photographers,’ Giuseppe recalls.

Inspired by the photographers he was working with, as well as the famous photography of Ernst Haas, Saul Leiter and Bill Cunningham, in 2010, Giuseppe decided to pick up a camera and start taking photos. ‘Street style photography was just beginning to boom at the time, so I started a Tumblr that focused on men’s street style on the streets of Sydney,’ Giuseppe explains. He called his blog Men In This Town.

After only a year of shooting, Giuseppe was invited by Tumblr to New York City to help them cover New York Fashion Week. ‘It was an incredible opportunity to push my photography to the next level and gain exposure through the platform,’ he says.

Three years in, Giuseppe found himself in demand for photography jobs and branded blog content, and in 2013 he decided to take a leap, leave his full-time job and start a small creative studio, called MITT Work. He hasn’t looked back!

In 2015, Giuseppe founded the print edition of Men In This Town, a small format, beautifully designed magazine known as MITT.

‘The magazine offers different sections that I don’t think could be replicated online,’ Giuseppe explains. ‘The digest is divided in three sections: Find, which focuses on interesting goods and businesses being made around the world. Meet, which delves into the lives of three men based in various cities around the world. And Observe, which is place for contributors to share their experiences or thoughts on masculinity and what it means to be a man in the world we live in today.’

Interestingly, the magazine has a surprisingly well-balanced readership, appealing equally to both men and women. ‘Anyone can relate to the stories being told, regardless of their gender,’ Guiseppe points out. ‘The magazine is about men, not necessarily made just for men.’

Working from a small studio at the rear of Fine Fellow’s retail store, Giuseppe connects with contributors from Australia and overseas to produce each MITT issue. Having a business partner for the retail side of things (jeweller Clara Ho of Burton Metal Depository) allows Giuseppe the freedom to continue to travel, shoot and remain inspired. ‘Having a partner in this business gives us both an opportunity to still trave,l’ Giuseppe says. ‘I can continue to capture the streets around the world, and meet men with a story to tell.’

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First Nations artists, designers, makers, and creative business owners are encouraged to submit their projects for coverage on The Design Files. Please email bea@thedesignfiles.net