Sunday, February 9, 2014

The Best Photography Shop in Venice (Updated 8 June 2018)

Marco Missiaja's Pro Photo Italia shop on Calle dei Fuseri (address: San Marco 4367) (all images updated 8 June 2018)

I don't know exactly how many photography shops there are in Venice, but I have no doubt about which of them is my favorite. I first happened into Marco Missiaja's Pro Photo Italia (in its old location) on Calle dei Fuseri in need of a tripod. I later returned for a number of other little things--rechargeable batteries on one day, a memory card on another--and always enjoyed talking to him. A photographer himself, he turned out to be a great source of information (in Italian and English) not only on the subject of gear, but on the practice of taking pictures.

I also appreciated the fact that I could ask him about different lenses I was considering for my camera without ever feeling that his answers were dictated simply by his interest in making a sale. He didn't suggest equipment based upon its cost, nor his profit margin. On the contrary, I've known him to tell me flat out that something I was thinking of buying was not something I actually needed.  


I learned about the Fuji cameras I now use (initially, the Fuji X-E1, now the Fuji X-T1) from him as a result of asking about some of his own framed night shots of Venice for sale in his store. When my old Canon gave out not long after, he allowed me to try out his own X-E1 after I expressed interest in it. Though he remains a fan of Fuji, he recently (as of June 2018) started to shoot much of his own work with a Sony camera. So you can find both Sony and Fuji gear in his shop (along with Canon, Nikon, and other brands) and talk about them with someone who's used both extensively for his own work.

Marco and his partner, Grazia, behind the counter on Calle dei Fuseri 

When I originally posted this in February 2014, Pro Photo Italia actually consisted of two small shops near either end of the Calle dei Fuseri. A short time ago the contents of those two separate storefronts were combined in a single more spacious shop on the same calle, about midway between where the two small shops used to be and a few yards from the Ponte dei Fuseri.

The greater amount of space in the new location allows not only for the better display of photography supplies, equipment, and framed images, but for workshops and events to be held in-store: either in a light-filled ground floor room or a well-equipped photography studio upstairs (see images below).

I've found Marco's prices to be the best not only in Venice proper, but usually as good as any I've seen on the mainland or online. But you can check this out for yourself by visiting his website and online store at: http://www.prophotoitalia.com/

There's also a second Pro Photo Italia in Rome, run by Marco's brother, which I haven't visited yet, but which I look forward to checking out (its address can be found on the website link above). 

But when you're in Venice and in need of photography supplies (however small) or gear (however sophisticated) Pro Photo Italia is the place to go.

The new shop has space on the ground floor in which to hold workshops and events...

...as well as a studio upstairs for workshops focusing on matters of lighting and studio photography


6 comments:

  1. Thank you for this info. I am a Fuji X user and fan myself. I am going to Venice for five days and I will certainly pay a visit to both the outlets mentioned here. Cheers, Geir

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know that I really enjoy going into that photography shop, Geir, and if not for Marco's good advice I don't know if I would have found out about the Fuji X cameras--which I really enjoy using. I hope you'll like the shop, too.

      Delete
  2. Nice post! How wonderful It was to enter those photography shops in the old days, when standard everyday photography was still technically difficult and the owner would be kind of a teacher.
    I'm glad these shops survive, and pretty sure due to the imagination and good work of their owners and attendants.
    I think the photography shop in the link below still exists, not sure, but in 2008 it was like this, so picturesque:
    https://goo.gl/photos/8HvXQ5w8EFFR6RWDA

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The shop you captured so nicely in the linked image does still exist but less as an actual photo shop than as the office of a working photographer. He does have a few used pieces of camera equipment for sale, and some of his own works in various print formats for sale, and will take passport photos and the like on the spot, and will print your own digital images for you, but I think he is more a working photographer than a shop owner, so I'm pretty sure that you can't even purchase a memory card there, for example. But he is quite knowledgeable and quite nice to talk with--we've had some passport photos taken there and he printed an image for us on canvas--but it's no longer the kind of retail shop you photographed in 2008. Fortunately, Marco's Pro Photo Italia still is that kind of shop--and I've always found him to be very helpful with any questions I've had about equipment or technique, too.

      Delete
  3. Does anyone know if either of these shops rent tripods??

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't know if they do, Cheryl, but you might give them a call or email them and ask, they speak English:

      tel: 39.041.839.3094 OR

      email: info@prophotoitalia.com (if you email, specify that you are interested in renting from the Venice store, as there is also a store in Rome run by Marco's brother).

      Delete