The Visual Storytelling Academy


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"Man is a storytelling animal by nature"

Umberto Eco

Storytelling is today’s buzzword.

It is all-pervasive.

Now, everything is told as "a story"

but what does - s t o r y t e l l i n g - actually mean?

Or, indeed, how to move from  s t o r y ~ t e l l i n g ?

to s t o r y ~ s h o w i n g ?

Welcome to The Visual Storytelling Academy


Interview at the ILO Agency of the United Nations in Geneva
What is Visual Storytelling?
© The United Nations Agency of the ILO 2018



The 798 of Beijing
Commissioned triptych for private collection
© Fusari / massimedia

Why The Visual?

It has been suggested that, each year, more images are being produced and made public than throughout the whole history of photography prior to 2014.

In a sea of digital information being noticed, or engaged with, even for a second, can make or break your message.

The role of images is gaining momentum in the communication strategies of individuals, business and governments globally.

Though, are image actually used to their full potential?

Unfortunately, I do not believe so.

In turn, I promote the sensible use of Visual Storytelling to establish images as central to multimedia communication on digital platforms.

Visual Storytelling does so by leveraging aesthetics, composition and colour to design eloquent and effective messages.

Designing aesthetics as a sensible, practical and creative tool to change the mood, tone or direction of a message means that you can tailor your output to influence your target audience strategically.

Visual storytelling is your tool to combine advocacy for your cause with the powerbroking potential of your digital audience.


Visual Storytelling is not content in a form.


Storytelling is
digital form
fit for the
visual content


Interactive  Storytelling

Storytelling is easy to call for, but hard to accomplish.

Furthermore, Visual Storytelling content and formats require the appreciation of the several factors impacting on its communication, from the audiences’ background to the unpredictability of today’s unfolding events.

In response, interactive storytelling recognises the acquired centrality of the visual form towards turning multimedia communication into a co-creative digital dialogue.

Since 2010, I have been researching and practising digital forms of interactive storytelling.

Let me show you my latest awarded project on the Tentmakers of Cairo as to how interactive communication enhances the possibilities of today’s visual storytelling.


The Exhibition CatalogueThe Interactive Platform

ABOVE – HH Sultan III bin Muhammad al-Qasimi, Ruler of the Emirate of Sharjah, opening my 2012 exhibition in Durham (UK)

Recent Exhibitions


United Nations Intercultural Communication event – New York (USA), 2017

A retrospective of my photographs from Cairo to China.

The Streaming Museum – New York (USA), 2017

A retrospective of my photographs from Cairo to China.

The Oriental Museum of Durham (UK), 2014

Permanent exhibition – The Tentmakers of Islamic Cairo.

I have been exhibiting regularly since 2003



Why Me?


My name is Massimiliano.

I’m a visual strategist, digital consultant and academic scholar.

My focus is the creation of effective visual storytelling on digital and interactive platforms.

I have worked as a multimedia journalist for 25+ years from Morocco to China.

My client portfolio includes the UN Agencies IOM, ILO and UNESCO, private partners in the business sector, media industries and research institutions such as the British Academy.

I recently consulted for the Kosovo Government and the Diplomatic Institute of the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

I am fluent in Italian, English and Persian. I have a working knowledge of Arabic.

I was awarded my PhD at the University of Exeter (UK) in 2014.

Since then I have been researching, consulting, training and teaching (Senior Lecturer at the University of Westminster).

And – of course – making visual stories


Training & ConsultingA One Page CV



Where will you go next?

  Continue exploring The Academy