Thursday May 16th, 2013 09:23 AM
We live in an age where we’re encouraged to think newer is better. This year’s camera / computer / car (insert your preference here) is better than last year’s, they tell us. So, once in a while, it’s nice to spend some time photographing a very traditional activity.
A team of loggers have been thinning a 40-year-old pine forest near Ezcaray, La Rioja. By taking down some of the trees, those left behind have more room to grow. But rather than dragging down the trunks with tractors they use mules. Using animals means they don’t have to carve new paths through the forest; mules’ hooves damage the mountain environment less than mechanical tracks.
The animals are trained to obey the voice commands of their handlers and watching them work as a team was a real privilege.
Monday January 28th, 2013 06:54 PM
When on assignment for a newspaper I’m always looking for two things. The first is the “wow” picture that stops people in their tracks and, with a bit of luck, makes the front page the next day. The second is a variety and depth of images to complete the portfolio.
My job, regardless of whether its for a press or commercial job or for a wedding, is to tell the story through strong images. To do that you need to have photos which show the big picture but others that give the details. In the case of snowy whether, that means showing how people, animals and general every day life is affected.
In addition I’m always looking for photos which not only appeal to the eyes but to the viewers’ other senses. I want you to feel cold looking at the dog or the cows. And share the joy of my son Nick throwing a snowball and excitement of the girls in a snowball fight.
Thursday November 29th, 2012 10:16 AM
Sports stars, successful artists and business leaders famously have it and so too, it seems to me, do the winemakers I’ve been visiting over the past couple of weeks. The ‘it’ I’m referring to is devotion to what they do.
I’ve been photographing a number of them for Diario La Rioja’s annual wine supplement. At Marqués de Riscal in Elciego, Javier Salamero spoke with tenderness & love about the historic wines on offer. Of course you could argue that he was preaching to the converted as the photo above seems to suggest.
In San Vicente de la Sonsierra I found two mega construction projects. Jose Manuel de Bodegas Viña Ijalba has flattened the top of a sizeable hill by 10m to make a plateau on which he has planted grape varieties from all over the world.Nearby Marcos Eguren has excavated a laberinth of huge tunnels to provide storage for the Sierra Cantabria winery that is being constructed above.
And in Samaniego I watched as Fernando Remírez de Ganuza, who makes some delicious wines, went mosquito hunting. It reminded me of a Monty Python sketch but underlined his dedication to the cause. And made a nice photo too!
Friday July 13th, 2012 11:08 AM
Couples who hire photojournalists not only want beautiful wedding photos but also stories told through the images. There are various ways of doing this – perhaps the most obvious being through a series of photos. You can narrate the day with a portfolio taken over many hours or tell about a special moment with a number of images snapped in a couple of seconds.
But another, more subtle, way I tell stories is through the components I include in the composition of a photo. The above picture was taken in the Zaragoza flat where María grew up. There were lots of family photos on show. As soon as I entered I started making a mental note of what pictures were where, including the picture of María’s mother on her wedding day more than 30 years before.
A few minutes later María and her father were together near this photo. I took a couple of shots, one focused on María and her father, the other on the picture. Perhaps it’s not the most beautiful shot of the day but it is the one that tells the story of two generations of a family.
Client comment: “Thank you for being an excellent photographer. Not only were you excellent but also very popular!!”
Thursday March 29th, 2012 12:17 PM
Over recent weeks some of Spain’s most prestigious chefs, including Paco Morales and Andoni Luis Aduriz, have given talks at Francis Paniego and Luisa Barrachina’s Tondeluna restaurant in Logroño.
Last night was the turn of Juan Mari Arzak, the grand maestro credited with bringing Basque cooking to world attention. Andoni and Francis learnt their craft with Arzak. Without him, Mugaritz and Tondeluna probably wouldn’t exist.
Arzak spoke about everything from his first restaurant to the lunch he served for the Queen of England. And his best tip? It doesn’t matter how good the food is or how exquisite the recipe, if it’s served on a cold plate at the wrong temperature, it’s no good.
I’ve put a gallery with more photos here.